Reporters Voice Outrage at Donald Trump's "Bait-and-Switch" Press Conference

The Hollywood Reporter

Many journalists are not pleased with Donald Trump after he pulled a bait-and-switch at a press conference on Friday morning.

Donald Trump began Friday morning by declaring that he had a "major announcement" to make about his birtherism claims regarding President Obama. Major cable networks subsequently aired his press conference at the new Trump International Hotel in Washington, D.C., waiting for him to comment on the issue he's largely ignored during his 2016 presidential campaign.

For the first 25 minutes, Trump used the time to let military veterans speak about his leadership. Cable networks started cutting away from the event, with anchors chiming in that Trump was playing the media and using the event to promote his new hotel.

"It's hard to imagine this is anything other than a political rick-roll," said CNN's Jake Tapper.

"We got played, again, by the Trump campaign, because that's what they do," added John King. Longtime political journalist John Harwood referred to the announcement as a "tactic."

Trump eventually took the podium to briefly touch on the birther topic, ly saying Hillary Clinton started the controversy.

"Hillary Clinton in her campaign of 2008 started the birther controversy. I finished it," said Trump. "President Barack Obama was born in the United States, period. Now we all want to get back to making America strong and great again."

Conservative news site Breitbart celebrated the media getting "trick[ed]"

Any day that the establishment press gets r㉫ĸ&dagger is a good day. pic.twitter.com/1ROcamQZIc

- Breitbart News (@BreitbartNews) September 16, 2016

Trump's campaign head Steve Bannon used to be the executive chairman of Breitbart News.

Journalists on social media said that the TV pool covering Trump voted to not air the footage of his hotel tour in protest of the "bait-and-switch" event.


BREAK - Trump TV pool voted to pull the camera from Trump hotel tour and not air footage

- Hadas Gold (@Hadas_Gold) September 16, 2016

A source says Trump broadcast pool just erased tape of his tour of the hotel in protest of bait-and-switch w no editorial access.

- Maggie Haberman (@maggieNYT) September 16, 2016

Trump birther statement today was not a "difficult admission," "acknowledgement" or "surrender." It was, like previous statements, a tactic.

- John Harwood (@JohnJHarwood) September 16, 2016

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