The Trump administration is reveling in its recent victory, but it isn’t about to forgive and forget just yet.
On Monday, the White House reportedly sent a memo to TV producers noting guests who preemptively implicated Trump in collusion, followed by a plea to boycott future bookings.
In a memo titled, “Credibility of Guests,” Tim Murtaugh, director of communications for President Donald Trump, listed six notable individuals who made “outlandish, false claims.” This includes Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), who stated during an MSNBC appearance, “The evidence is pretty clear there was collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russians.”
House Intelligence Committee Chairman and Representative Adam Schiff (D-CT), DNC Chairman Don Perez, Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-CA), and former CIA Director John Brennan also made the cut.
The memo asked bookers to challenge these guests–and others proven wrong by Mueller’s report–to provide evidence that prompted such “wild claims in the first place.” Murtaugh then stated that the public has been bombarded with these false accusations for two years, and that “there must be introspection from the media who facilitated the reckless statements and a serious evaluation of how such guests are considered and handled in the future.”
Swalwell responded to the memo on Twitter, doubling down on his claim that Trump was lying about his involvement with Russia.
The only person who has been caught lying about Russia is Donald Trump. If he thinks I’ve made a false statement, he can sue me. And I’ll beat him in court. https://t.co/x9UvPnTqkO
— Rep. Eric Swalwell (@RepSwalwell) March 25, 2019
Many have criticized the mainstream media’s fixation with Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Trump-Russia collusion investigation. It ultimately did not find enough evidence to bring charges against the president. Murtaugh’s recent play, however, did not land well on social media, where journalists lambasted the White House for overstepping its boundaries.
The memo comes right after White House press secretary Sarah Sanders lamented the media’s lack of accountability on Monday morning. “They literally accused the president of the United States of being an agent for a foreign government,” Sanders said in a TV interview. “That’s equivalent to treason.”
Sanders’s statements echoed those of White House counselor Kellyanne Conway, who called for Schiff to resign. During an appearance on Fox & Friends, Conway said, “[Schiff] has no right as somebody who has been peddling a lie day after day after day unchallenged. Unchallenged and not under oath. Somebody should have put him under oath and said, ‘You have evidence–where is it?'”
Fast Company reached out to the White House for a statement, but has yet to hear back.