Trump whipped the crowd into fevered chants

Mark Landler and Maggie Haberman at the Times report that Trump blamed the media for the angry divisions in the country.

In an angry, unbridled and unscripted performance that rivaled the most sulfurous rallies of his presidential campaign, Mr. Trump sought to deflect the anger toward him against the news media, suggesting that they, not he, were responsible for deepening divisions in the country.

“It’s time to expose the crooked media deceptions,” Mr. Trump said. He added, “They’re very dishonest people.”

“The only people giving a platform to these hate groups is the media itself and the fake news,” he said.

Mr. Trump also derided the media for focusing on his tweets, which are his preferred form of communication.

“I don’t do Twitter storms,” said the president, who often posts a few tweets in a row on a given subject, with exclamation points.

It was the latest shift in what has become a nearly daily change of roles for this president: from the statesmanlike commander in chief who sought harmony on Monday evening by citing the example of America’s soldiers to the political warrior who, just a day later, preached unapologetic division to his supporters here, eliciting louder cheers with every epithet.

He’s a vulgar trashy brawler with a lot of money, and he got elected. We’re a sick country.

Mr. Trump accused the news media of “trying to take away our history and our heritage,” an apparent reference to the debate over removing statues to heroes of the Confederacy, which prompted the rally by neo-Nazis and white supremacists in Charlottesville.

The president singled out a familiar list of malefactors — including the “failing New York Times,” which he erroneously said had apologized for its coverage of the 2016 election; CNN; and The Washington Post, which he described as a lobbying arm for Amazon, the company controlled by the newspaper’s owner, Jeff Bezos.

Pointing repeatedly to the cameras in the middle of a cavernous convention center, Mr. Trump whipped the crowd into fevered chants of “CNN Sucks.” Members of the audience shouted epithets at reporters, some demanding that the news media stop tormenting the president with questions about his ties to Russia.

Scary enough yet?

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