NEW YORK: Donald Trump has not hidden his distaste for the press, describing them as "dishonest," "sleazy," and "not good people," despite receiving more than $2 billion worth of free media during his campaign.
The president-elect's comments have raised concern among journalism advocacy groups, who fear Trump will restrict press access during his presidency. On Wednesday, 15 journalism associations, including the National Press Club, the Society of Professional Journalists, and Reporters Without Borders, wrote an open letter to Trump calling for regular press conferences, access to his key decision-makers, and a spirit of openness and transparency during his leadership.
Thomas Burr, president of the National Press Club, penned the letter. He wrote, "We call on you to commit to a protective press pool from now until the final day of your presidency. We respectfully ask you to instill a spirit of openness and transparency in your administration in many ways but first and foremost via the press pool."
Burr stressed the critical role of the press in the letter.
"Citizens depend on and deserve to know what the president is doing," he wrote. "This isn't about access for the press itself, it's about access for Americans in diverse communities across the country."
The letter does not directly address Trump's specific attacks, but the president-elect is continuing to express his discontent with the media on Twitter. In the first days after the election, Trump tweeted about his frustrations with how The New York Times covered his transition. And on Wednesday morning, he continued his criticism after the newspaper's report on the state of his transition period.
Australia, New Zealand, and more. I am always available to them. @nytimes is just upset that they looked like fools in their coverage of me.— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 16, 2016
This story first appeared on campaignlive.com.