WASHINGTON: US President Donald Trump has said the media outlets should be mandated to name their sources in their stories, as he slammed the top mainstream American media for their alleged dishonest reporting.
During a news conference at the White House on Saturday, Trump launched an unprecedented individual criticism of Maggie Haberman, White House correspondent for 'The New York Times' and a political analyst for CNN, for allegedly writing inaccurate source-based stories.
"You know what sources say means? Sources say means that they have nobody and they make it up," he said.
According to Trump, sources say is the most often used expression in the 'Washington Post', 'New York Times', and especially the CNN.
"They should really be mandated. To use a name. If there is a source, use a name," Trump demanded, adding that he did not believe that the sources exist.
Haberman has, in a joint byline with her colleague Jonathan Martin, said the Republicans increasingly believe that elevating China's culpability for spreading the coronavirus may be the best way to improve their difficult election chances.
Days ago, a story based on sources by Haberman said the new White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, weeks into his job, "cried while meeting with members of the White House staff on at least two occasions".
Trump described this as dishonest reporting.
"You know she won a Pulitzer Prize for her coverage of Russia, but she was wrong on Russia. So is everyone else. They should all give back their Pulitzer prizes," he said.
"She's a third-rate reporter for New York Times," Trump alleged.
Last week, Trump put her name in one of the video clippings that his office had prepared about the alleged fake narratives of some of the media on his handling of the coronavirus.