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Jonathan Swan Feb 24, 2017
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Trump was the king of anonymous sources

In his speech at CPAC this morning, President Trump inveighed against journalists who use anonymous sources in their stories, saying "they shouldn't be allowed to use sources unless they use somebody's name."

Oh, the irony.Trump slams unnamed sources as W.H. reveals Priebus asked FBI permission to cite anonymous officials https://t.co/Gj98JDCJNa pic.twitter.com/svwwWOgNRX— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) February 24, 2017

A few problems:

  1. Trump was one of the Manhattan media's most notorious anonymous sources throughout his career as a real estate showman.
  2. For years, Trump would call in anonymous tips about himself to the New York Post's Page Six. Two of his pseudonyms were John Barron and John Miller.
  3. Trump frequently used the phrase "off the record but you can use it," according to the New Yorker's Mark Singer, who profiled Trump in the late 90s.
  4. As the Washington Post's White House reporter Phil Rucker points out, Trump's attack on anonymous sources this morning came shortly after his aides held an anonymous briefing with the press.