- President Donald Trump claimed that “no one” has been treated worse than he has by the media, not even former president Abraham Lincoln.
- “They always said no one was treated worse than [Abraham] Lincoln,” Trump said in a Fox News town hall held at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, DC. “I believe I am treated worse.”
- Lincoln faced a famously combative press amid the secession and the Civil War, and his administration repressed newspapers that opposed him.
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President Donald Trump claimed on Sunday evening that “no one” has been treated worse than he has by the media, not even former president Abraham Lincoln.
Asked about his tirades against journalists in the middle of the coronavirus pandemic, Trump turned in his seat to face the likeness of one of America’s most revered leaders.
“They always said no one was treated worse than [Abraham] Lincoln,” Trump said in a Fox News town hall held at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, DC. “I believe I am treated worse.”
Trump has repeatedly berated reporters who have questioned the administration’s handling of the novel coronavirus, an outbreak that top national security officials repeatedly warned Trump about and that has now claimed the lives of 67,000 Americans.
“They come at me with questions that are disgraceful, to be honest, disgraceful,” Trump said at the town hall. “Their manner of presentation and their words. And if I feel that if I was kind to them, I’d be walked off the stage.”
Lincoln faced a famously combative press
Lincoln, who served as president from 1861 to his death in 1865, faced a famously combative press amid the secession and then the Civil War, and his administration repressed newspapers that opposed him.
This was just one reason Lincoln wasn’t treated well by the press. He also led the war that defeated states that seceded from the union at a cost of 620,000 soldiers’ lives, suspended the right of Americans to report unlawful imprisonment, and freed millions of enslaved African-Americans.
One pamphlet from the time called him “Abraham Africanus 1” with a crown on his head.
Lincoln was assassinated in 1865. He was shot in the back of the head while watching a play by an actor who was aggrieved by Lincoln’s freeing of slaves. The 155th anniversary of Lincoln’s burial is Monday.
Overhead photograph of large throng at Lincoln Memorial as Martin Luther King speaks during March on Washington, 1963: pic.twitter.com/rR0Ehc2K4q
— Michael Beschloss (@BeschlossDC) May 3, 2020
The Lincoln Memorial is one of America’s most hallowed grounds. It is where singer Marian Anderson performed to tens of thousands after being barred from the segregated Constitution Hall in 1939. And it is where hundreds of thousands of civil rights protesters gathered in 1963’s March on Washington. Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. gave his famous “I have a dream” speech to that crowd on the memorial’s steps.