Reince Priebus Echoes Trump's Earlier Suggestion Of Opening Libel Laws To Punish Negative Media

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Remember this tweet?

While there seems to be no end to actual “fake news” sites, these days, the New York Times is not one of them.

Biased news? Without a doubt, but fake, not at all.

Journalists of the more legitimate nature tend to report the news as it comes out. Sometimes the facts change and they have the freedom to update their information with new stories.

Depending on the outlet, you may notice a spin to the left or a spin to the right, but the basic core of information is accurate.

I’ve said over and over again that threatening legitimate news sources, even if they show bias, is dangerous.

Trump seems to have eased up on his anti-free speech rhetoric a bit, but here comes White House chief of staff Reince Priebus to give it new life.

Hitting the Sunday morning talk circuit, Priebus suggested that changing the libel laws to threaten news outlets into giving more favorable coverage to Trump is something they have considered.

“I think it’s something that we’ve looked at, and how that gets executed or whether that goes anywhere is a different story,” Priebus said on ABC’s “This Week.”

“But when you have articles out there that have no basis or fact and we’re sitting here on 24/7 cable companies writing stories about constant contacts with Russia and all these other matters.”

Constant contacts with Russia?

How about proven contacts with Russia or Russian envoys by members of Trump’s team?

Trump has been talking about opening up the libel laws since February of 2016, when he said, “open up our libel laws so when [media] write purposely negative and horrible and false articles, we can sue them and win lots of money.”

“I think that newspapers and news agencies need to be more responsible with how they report the news,” Priebus said Sunday, referring to what he said are articles with “no basis or fact.”

The media are under no compulsion to lavish praise on the president. Sure, they’ve done it for the last eight years, but that’s that bias I spoke of earlier.

You don’t hold a legal threat over the heads of media outlets, in order to determine the direction of their reporting. Any nation that would allow that of a leader is no longer a free nation.

As it is, libel laws are different from state to state, so it would take an amendment to the Constitution to make that happen.