Trump campaign is trying to shame TV producers out of interviews with ‘certain guests’

Donald Trump’s 2020 re-election campaign sent a memo to television networks on Monday listing “certain guests” that have been critical of the president, urging producers to question whether those listed have sufficient credibility to appear on news programs in the future.

The letter was sent to members of the media in response to Attorney General William Barr’s broad summary that said special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation did not find the Trump campaign colluded with Russia to influence the outcome of the 2016 presidential election. A senior campaign official, who confirmed the memo’s authenticity to HuffPost, said the letter was sent to producers and hosts at broadcast and cable networks. 

The memo, tweeted by Axios’ Jonathan Swan, was sent by Trump campaign communications director Tim Murtaugh, who wrote that Barr’s summary of Mueller’s report was a “total and complete vindication” of the president. Barr’s summary indicated that Mueller did not establish collusion but it did not totally exonerate the president of possibly obstructing justice to interfere with the probe into Russia’s meddling, despite the administration and its allies taking a victory lap over their interpretation.

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Donald Trump visits a military tank plant in Lima, Ohio
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Donald Trump visits a military tank plant in Lima, Ohio
US President Donald Trump disembarks from Air Force One upon arrival at Joint Base Andrews in Maryland, on March 20, 2019, after traveling to Ohio to visit a military manufacturing facility and attend a fundraiser. (Photo by SAUL LOEB / AFP) (Photo credit should read SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)
U.S. President Donald Trump, center, speaks at the Joint Systems Manufacturing Center in Lima, Ohio, U.S., on Wednesday, March 20, 2019. Trump on Wednesday visited a thriving military factory in politically vital Ohio, a symbol of his success at enlarging the U.S. defense budget, as he sought to turn attention from his inability to return jobs to a failing car plant elsewhere in the state. Photographer: Maddie McGarvey/Bloomberg via Getty Images
U.S. President Donald Trump gestures to attendees at the Joint Systems Manufacturing Center in Lima, Ohio, U.S., on Wednesday, March 20, 2019. Trump on Wednesday visited a thriving military factory in politically vital Ohio, a symbol of his success at enlarging the U.S. defense budget, as he sought to turn attention from his inability to return jobs to a failing car plant elsewhere in the state. Photographer: Maddie McGarvey/Bloomberg via Getty Images
U.S. President Donald Trump speaks at the Joint Systems Manufacturing Center in Lima, Ohio, U.S., on Wednesday, March 20, 2019. Trump on Wednesday visited a thriving military factory in politically vital Ohio, a symbol of his success at enlarging the U.S. defense budget, as he sought to turn attention from his inability to return jobs to a failing car plant elsewhere in the state. Photographer: Maddie McGarvey/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Attendees listen while U.S. President Donald Trump, not pictured, speaks at the Joint Systems Manufacturing Center in Lima, Ohio, U.S., on Wednesday, March 20, 2019. Trump on Wednesday visited a thriving military factory in politically vital Ohio, a symbol of his success at enlarging the U.S. defense budget, as he sought to turn attention from his inability to return jobs to a failing car plant elsewhere in the state. Photographer: Maddie McGarvey/Bloomberg via Getty Images
US President Donald Trump speaks after touring the Lima Army Tank Plant at Joint Systems Manufacturing in Lima, Ohio, March 20, 2019. (Photo by SAUL LOEB / AFP) (Photo credit should read SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)
Attendees stand during the Pledge of Allegiance at an event with U.S. President Donald Trump at the Joint Systems Manufacturing Center in Lima, Ohio, U.S., on Wednesday, March 20, 2019. Trump on Wednesday visited a thriving military factory in politically vital Ohio, a symbol of his success at enlarging the U.S. defense budget, as he sought to turn attention from his inability to return jobs to a failing car plant elsewhere in the state. Photographer: Maddie McGarvey/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Jon Husted, lieutenant governor of Ohio, speaks during an event with U.S. President Donald Trump at the Joint Systems Manufacturing Center in Lima, Ohio, U.S., on Wednesday, March 20, 2019. Trump on Wednesday visited a thriving military factory in politically vital Ohio, a symbol of his success at enlarging the U.S. defense budget, as he sought to turn attention from his inability to return jobs to a failing car plant elsewhere in the state. Photographer: Maddie McGarvey/Bloomberg via Getty Images
U.S. President Donald Trump applauds while arriving to speak at the Joint Systems Manufacturing Center in Lima, Ohio, U.S., on Wednesday, March 20, 2019. Trump on Wednesday visited a thriving military factory in politically vital Ohio, a symbol of his success at enlarging the U.S. defense budget, as he sought to turn attention from his inability to return jobs to a failing car plant elsewhere in the state. Photographer: Maddie McGarvey/Bloomberg via Getty Images
U.S. President Donald Trump gestures while arriving to speak at the Joint Systems Manufacturing Center in Lima, Ohio, U.S., on Wednesday, March 20, 2019. Trump on Wednesday visited a thriving military factory in politically vital Ohio, a symbol of his success at enlarging the U.S. defense budget, as he sought to turn attention from his inability to return jobs to a failing car plant elsewhere in the state. Photographer: Maddie McGarvey/Bloomberg via Getty Images
US President Donald Trump boards Air Force One prior to departure from Lima Allen County Airport in Lima, Ohio, March 20, 2019, as he travels to visit a military manufacturing facility and attend a fundraiser. (Photo by SAUL LOEB / AFP) (Photo credit should read SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)
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Murtaugh accused lawmakers including Democratic Reps. Adam Schiff (Calif.), Richard Blumenthal (Conn.), Jerry Nadler (N.Y.) and Eric Swalwell (Calif.) of “lying to the American people” and making “outlandish and false claims” unchallenged on the air. Frequent Trump critic and former CIA Director John Brennan and Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez were also listed in the memo. 

Each name was listed alongside one quote they’ve made about the president and Russian collusion in the 2016 election. The comments highlighted in the memo were presented without context.

Swalwell responded on Twitter, standing by his statement and accusing the president of lying.

According to The Washington Post’s fact-checking tally of the president’s lies, which was last updated on March 17, Trump has made 9,179 false or misleading claims in the 787 days he has spent in office.

  • This article originally appeared on HuffPost.
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