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Trump wants agencies to axe NYT, Washington Post subscriptions

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By Dareh Gregorian and Hallie Jackson and Monica Alba with NBC News Politics
Image: President Donald J. Trump
President Donald Trump talk to members of the media as he walks to board Marine One at the White House on Oct 10, 2019.   -   Copyright  Jabin Botsford The Washington Post/Getty Images
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Stop spreading the news.

President Donald Trump plans to direct federal agencies to cancel subscriptions to the New York Times and Washington Post, outlets he regularly derides as "fake news" for writing critical stories about him, the White House confirmed Thursday.

It's unclear how Trump's plan, which wasfirst reportedby the Wall Street Journal, would be carried out or enforced.

"Not renewing subscriptions across all federal agencies will be a significant cost saving for taxpayers - hundreds of thousands of dollars," White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham said in a statement.

It's unclear how many government subscriptions the papers have.

A rep for the Times declined comment.

Washington Post reporters noted on Twitter that their paper offers free digital subscriptions to anyone with a valid .gov or .mil or email address.

In an interview with Fox News host Sean Hannity on Monday, Trump said he didn't want either paper available on the White House grounds.

"The New York Times is a fake newspaper. We don't even want it in the White House anymore. We're going to probably terminate that and the Washington Post. They're fake," Trump said, adding that he'd heard he's gotten worse media coverage than any president besides Abraham Lincoln. "They say he got the worst press of anybody. I say I dispute it."

Trump's campaign, meanwhile, has subscribed to The Times, Journal and Washington Post, according to filings with the Federal Election Commission through Sept. 30. The campaign had no immediate comment.

Trump wasn't always so vitriolic about the Times. As president-elect in 2016, he offered warm words for his hometown newspaper, telling its editorial board he considered it "a great, great American jewel, world jewel."