Posted: 7:07 am Thursday, August 4th, 2016
By Jamie Dupree
One thing that has been missing from the 2016 campaign over the last eight months is reporters asking questions of Democratic Party nominee Hillary Clinton out on the trail. While she has done individual interviews with news organizations, Clinton has not held a news conference or press availability with reporters since early December of last year.
Usually on a campaign for President during the primary phase, reporters get a crack at the candidate – for at least a couple of questions – sometimes once a day, maybe every other day.
But that has not happened with Hillary Clinton since after a town hall that she held in Fort Dodge, Iowa on December 4 of last year.
Can anyone imagine Hillary Clinton holding a wide-ranging, lengthy news conference like this? Especially on a regular basis.
— Ari Fleischer (@AriFleischer) July 27, 2016
Maybe if you paid Hillary $700,000 she would do a press conference? NYT, think about it.
— Lewis Amselem (@TheDiplomad) August 2, 2016
The lack of access has not gone unnoticed by Donald Trump.
“Hillary Clinton hasn’t had a news conference in I think 242 days,” Trump said during a stop in Virginia earlier this week.
“She doesn’t do news conferences, because she can’t,” Trump complained.
While Trump routinely denounces the press, and even bars certain news organizations from his events, he sticks up for reporters when it comes to Clinton and her lack of access.
“Number one, she’s so dishonest, she doesn’t want people peppering her with questions,” Trump added.
“It’s a disgrace,” Trump said. “Maybe we’ll force her to have one.”
"I think it's time for Hillary Clinton to do a news conference," says Trump.
— andrew kaczynski (@BuzzFeedAndrew) July 27, 2016
Major news organizations have also pressed the issue – but it’s gone nowhere.
— ABC News (@ABC) July 29, 2016
I guess it’s possible Clinton may go the rest of the campaign without holding a news conference. We’ll see over the next three months.
About the Author
Jamie Dupree is the Radio News Director of the Washington Bureau of the Cox Media Group and writes the Washington Insider blog. A native of Washington, D.C., Jamie has covered Congress and politics in the nation’s capital since the Reagan Administration, and has been reporting for Cox since 1989.