April Ryan: Trump White House "Will Go After You" When You Report The Truth, "They've Tried to Discredit Me"

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April Ryan, self-declared "dean" of the White House press corps, said President Trump is trying to create a "conspiracy theory" with the Mueller investigation, like he did with birtherism, so people believe him "and not the truth."

Ryan, an author of a new book, also shared her fear of retribution from the Trump White House, especially when you report "the truth." The veteran reporter told CNN's Don Lemon they have "tried to discredit" her and warned, "if they could do what they're doing to me, they can do to others." What the Trump White House is doing to her is not made clear.

"The truth, the other side of the story about stories that affect people that this White House wants to change the narrative on," Ryan said Thursday night. "And when you report the truth, they go after you and how there is a lingering effect that lingers, not just on me, but on others."





"If they could do what they're doing to me, they can do to others and they have done it to others. They've tried to discredit me. They have lied on me. They've even said that I have taken money from Hillary Clinton, which is a total falsehood and a lie," she said.

"What people need to understand and the takeaway is, is if they do diminish the press, specifically, someone who's been there, considered a dean for 21 years," Ryan told Lemon.

Ryan feared that the "taxpaying public" will not find out what's going on in the house of the person that was elected president.

"If they diminish us -- this is something John McCain said, if you suppress the press, it begins a dictatorship. But not only that, if you suppress the press and stop us from asking questions or that piece of accountability, the American public, the tax-paying public does not find out what's going on in the house that the person that they elected to be in the seat of power is doing. So it's important that what the Founding Fathers put in place is still in place," she said.

Ryan said Trump is not interested in "unity" and has a knee-jerk reaction that Democrats are evil and not to talk. He doesn't think about the good of the country, Ryan said, "it's all about him."

"This president has clearly made a dividing line that, you know, Democrats are evil, we don't want to talk," she said. "It's not about unity, it's not about the good of the country, it's about a knee-jerk reaction, in a lot of ways, it all centers around what he thinks or how it affects him. Even from his Supreme Court nominee down to a promise he wants to keep about a wall that Mexico probably won't pay for. And also, you know, just how he thinks of this Russia investigation and what he says about the press. It's all about him. We've gone into a totally different day."

Ryan explained her belief that the president is "trying" to "create the conspiracy" that the Mueller probe is a witch hunt. She said he is trying to create some sort of "silver ball" so his base will believe him and not "the truth."

"Here's the bottom line. This president understands the severity of this and he is very clear minded as to what's going on. What he's trying to do is create the conspiracy that it's a witch hunt. He's trying to create this, this silver ball for his base who supports him on Russia, to believe him and not the truth. His own Justice Department is not conjuring occupy something to go against him, even though he and Sessions have this hate relationship," Ryan said.

April Ryan says Trump has put the nation in a crisis:

APRIL RYAN: You know, this is a president who some would say has put this nation in a crisis, a political crisis. And we're working through it, trying to figure out where we will land. When I look at how Donald Trump handles things, Joe Biden was absolutely right. There was a relationship with John McCain and Joe Biden. And there are so many on Capitol Hill who have had that kind of relationship. It's not about party. They can still talk about an issue. Whereas this president has clearly made a dividing line that, you know, Democrats are evil, we don't want to talk -- it's not about unity, it's not about the good of the country, it's about a knee-jerk reaction, in a lot of ways, it all centers around what he thinks or how it affects him. Even from his Supreme Court nominee down to a promise he wants to keep about a wall that Mexico probably won't pay for. And also, you know, just how he thinks of this Russia investigation and what he says about the press. It's all about him. We've gone into a totally different day, Don.


April Ryan says Trump is "on edge" right now and is trying to "create a conspiracy theory" to hurt Mueller:

DON LEMON, CNN HOST: The president, April, telling Bloomberg News that he views this Mueller probe as an illegal investigation. I mean, pair this with the Twitter tirade. Is this a president who's on edge right now? What's going on at the White House?

APRIL RYAN: Oh, yes, he's on edge. He's been on edge for a while, particularly after Cohen did this -- he pleaded guilty.

Here's the bottom line. This president understands the severity of this and he is very clear minded as to what's going on. What he's trying to do is create the conspiracy that it's a witch hunt. He's trying to create this, this silver ball for his base who supports him on Russia, to believe him and not the truth. His own Justice Department is not conjuring occupy something to go against him, even though he and Sessions have this hate relationship.

This is real. This is about rule of law. This is not about a witch hunt. And this is something that the president clearly understands. But once again, he's trying to create a conspiracy theory, just like he did with birtherism and had to go back and say, that's not true.


April Ryan on Sessions:

DON LEMON, CNN HOST: Trump confirming that he'll keep Sessions on until at least November. Do you think that that's a relief to Republicans on Capitol Hill?

APRIL RYAN: I don't know if it's relief or they're just trying to figure out what to do. One, Don, you have to look at this the midterms are very important. They play into this. It's about, if he does this, it could be a fractured party. Also, there would be hell to pay with confirmation hearings if he does try to do this. And it's about politics. It's about the midterms.

This president is keenly aware that he's got a lot of Senators who are very upset with him about Jeff Sessions. So he's got to play this the right way. And he's trying to use his wiggle room by pressuring them to do it, to get him out, to get Jeff Sessions to leave versus him doing it, where it could be obstruction of justice.

But it just, the optics of this are just totally off. For this president to be wanting to do this, when Jeff Sessions is the head of the Justice Department that is overseeing or in charge of this Mueller investigation. This is just, it's just the optics are terrible for this president.


April Ryan on what people can expect in her book:

APRIL RYAN: The truth, the other side of the story about stories that affect people that this White House wants to change the narrative on. And when you report the truth, they go after you and how there is a lingering effect that lingers, not just on me, but on others.

If they could do what they're doing to me, they can do to others and they have done it to others. They've tried to discredit me. They have lied on me. They've even said that I have taken money from Hillary Clinton, which is a total falsehood and a lie.

You know, this book, it reads like a novel, but it's the truth. But it's about the First Amendment. And what people need to understand and the takeaway is, is if they do diminish the press, specifically, someone who's been there, considered a dean for 21 years.

If they diminish us -- this is something John McCain said, if you suppress the press, it begins a dictatorship. But not only that, if you suppress the press and stop us from asking questions or that piece of accountability, the American public, the tax-paying public does not find out what's going on in the house that the person that they elected to be in the seat of power is doing. So it's important that what the Founding Fathers put in place is still in place.

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