The 2024 campaign of Donald Trump reportedly denied an NBC News correspondent access to cover a campaign event.
What Happened: Vaughn Hillyard, a seasoned correspondent for NBC News, was barred from covering a Trump campaign event in New Hampshire, as reported by The New York Times.
Hillyard, known for his extensive coverage of Trump’s political activities, was supposed to attend the event as a pool reporter on behalf of five major TV networks. However, he was informed by Trump’s aides that he would not be granted access.
Hillyard said in an email with fellow journalists, “Your pooler was told that if he was the designated pooler by NBC News that the pool would be cut off for the day.”
Steven Cheung, a spokesperson for the Trump campaign, verified that the network pool was absent at the New Hampshire event, yet maintained that the Trump campaign does not “bar reporters based on their reporting.”
This incident echoes past occasions where Trump’s team has denied press access to journalists, thereby raising concerns over press freedom.
Later on the same Sunday, Hillyard was reportedly allowed to attend a separate Trump rally at an opera house in Rochester, N.H.
Why It Matters: This isn’t the first instance where Hillyard’s interaction with the Trump campaign has made news.
Back in March 2023, an audio leak revealed that Trump had grabbed Hillyard’s phone and demanded his removal from an aircraft after being questioned about an ongoing criminal investigation during an impromptu press briefing. This incident had occurred after a Trump campaign rally in Texas, as reported by Benzinga.
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