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Trump campaign says it will ban Bloomberg reporters from events, rallies

Image: President Donald Trump speaks to the press before boarding Air Force
President Donald Trump speaks to the press before boarding Air Force One on Oct. 28, 2019. Copyright Brendan Smialowski AFP - Getty Images
Copyright Brendan Smialowski AFP - Getty Images
By Allan Smith with NBC News Politics
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The decision comes after the publication, founded by 2020 Democratic candidate Michael Bloomberg, announced it will not investigate its boss or Democrats, while continuing its coverage of Trump.


President Donald Trump's re-election campaign said Monday that it would no longer credential reporters from Bloomberg News to attend campaign events after the publication announced that it would not investigate its boss, Michael Bloomberg, or his rivals for the 2020 Democratic nomination.

"The decision by Bloomberg News to formalize preferential reporting policies is troubling and wrong," campaign manager Brad Parscale said in a statement. "Bloomberg News has declared that they won't investigate their boss or his Democrat competitors, many of whom are current holders of high office, but will continue critical reporting on President Trump."

"Since they have declared their bias openly, the Trump campaign will no longer credential representatives of Bloomberg News for rallies or other campaign events," Parscale added. "We will determine whether to engage with individual reporters or answer inquiries from Bloomberg News on a case-by-case basis. This will remain the policy of the Trump campaign until Bloomberg News publicly rescinds its decision."

Bloomberg editor in chief John Micklethwait responded moments later, saying in a statement that the "accusation of bias couldn't be further from the truth."

"We have covered Donald Trump fairly and in an unbiased way since he became a candidate in 2015 and will continue to do so despite the restrictions imposed by the Trump campaign," he said.

Last week, Micklethwait announced in a memo that the outlet won't do in-depth investigative reporting on Bloomberg or his rivals now that the company's billionaire owner jumped into the race. The news outlet said this was in keeping with its practice of not investigating its owner, and it extended the policy to his Democratic rivals out of fairness, the publication said.

"We will continue our tradition of not investigating Mike (and his family and foundation) and we will extend the same policy to his rivals in the Democratic primaries," John Micklethwait wrote in a memo to newsroom staffers. "We cannot treat Mike's Democratic competitors differently from him."

But Micklethwait said the publication will still investigate the Trump administration, calling it "the government of the day." The policy could change if Bloomberg were to win the nomination, Micklethwait wrote, adding that the outlet will publish investigations or summaries of them from other publications on Bloomberg and his Democratic rivals.

Bloomberg owns roughly 90 percent of Bloomberg L.P., the financial software company he co-founded that owns Bloomberg News. According to Micklethwait's memo, some of the outlet's opinion columnists would take a leave of absence.

Trump's 2016 campaign, citing unfair coverage, barred a number of outlets from official covering its events. Among those publications were BuzzFeed, Politico and The Des Moines Register.

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