White House Says Antisemitic Website ‘Not Credentialed’ for Media Coverage as Congress Members Deliver Letter of Protest
The White House said on Tuesday that the white supremacist website TruNews was not credentialed to cover press events at the Executive Mansion — hours after two members of Congress sent a letter to President Donald Trump’s acting chief of staff urging him “to condemn the antisemitic comments by TruNews founder and host Rick Wiles and deny TruNews any future access to the White House.”
In their letter on Tuesday to Mick Mulvaney, Reps. Ted Deutch (D-FL) and Elaine Luria (D-VA) asserted that, “Shockingly, published reports suggest that TruNews has participated at press events at the White House, including on Sept. 26, 2018, when President Trump took a question from TruNews during a press conference.”
They added: “On March 28, 2019, Donald Trump Jr. granted TruNews an interview during a political rally for his father.”
The letter to the White House from the legislators followed the outcry two weeks ago over a violently antisemitic rant by Pastor Rick Wiles — the founder of TruNews — while the outlet was streaming a segment on the impeachment proceedings presently facing Trump.
Warning against what he called a “Jew coup,” Wiles declared: “That’s the way the Jews work, they are deceivers, they plot, they lie, they do whatever they have to do to accomplish their political agenda.”
In their letter to Mulvaney, Reps. Deutch and Luria asked: “We want to know why TruNews was granted White House access and what steps are being taken to condemn their antisemitism and ensure such hatred is never welcomed in the White House again.”
A White House spokesperson said on Tuesday that TruNews was not authorized to cover its media events.
“They are not credentialed to cover the White House,” White House spokesperson Judd Deere told The Algemeiner in an email responding to a request for comment on Deutch and Luria’s joint letter.
Antisemitic, racist and anti-LGBTQ content and conspiracy theories are the main staples of the TruNews site. Among the headlines on display on Tuesday were “Trope Fatigue: Leftist Jews Accuse President Trump of Antisemitic Rants,” and “Terror State: Proof Israel Supports ‘Good Neighbor’ Terrorism.”
The outlet was originally founded in 1998 by Wiles, a non-denominational pastor who began his media career in the early 1980s as a sales manager for cable outlets CNN and ESPN.
On his show on TruNews on Sept. 5, Wiles spoke warmly of the relationship between his outlet and the White House.
“We turn down more White House invitations; we don’t go to all of them because we just don’t have the funding and the manpower to go to every single event that the White House invites us to.” Wiles said. “We are very appreciative that the White House invites us to these things.”