President Donald Trump speaks to reporters on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, Monday, Dec. 4, 2017, before heading to Utah. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

Paul Bedard


The editor of the Washington Post revealed an inside Washington secret Monday about President Trump: He is far more accessible to reporters than former President Obama.

Martin Baron told a conference on journalism ethics that Trump regularly makes himself available to reporters, even if it sometimes comes with criticism of the media.

Twitter coverage of Baron’s comments at the Poynter Journalism Ethics Summit said, “‘It’s not like we had a love-fest with the Obama administration. We tried for 2 years to get an interview. We do better with the current president in terms of access than the last one.’ – @PostBaron”

Another tweet from the conference coverage added, “@PostBaron says Trump is not shy about giving press access: ‘He likes to talk to the press as much as he demonizes us.’”

Many reporters complain about access, but Baron’s comments demonstrated that Trump and his team are chatty. And in many cases, even though he complains about the press, he sometimes makes calls to individual reporters to grant interviews.

Still, access isn’t enough and Baron suggested in a tweet posted by one of his editors that the media should have seen him coming and done something.

“@PostBaron: We should have seen Trump — or someone like him — coming, ‘before he descended the escalator.’ We won’t make that mistake again; reporters are covering every corner of the U.S.,” tweeted Post Homepage Editor Doris N. Truong.

The conference also found reporters worried about their safety. CNN’s Jim Acosta was quoted worrying about threats.

“@acosta: People shouldn’t be coming up to me or getting into Twitter saying they want to kill me. A virus injected into our political bloodstream is potentially lethal – sometimes I get frustrated…I do see a pretty severe crisis in this country,” tweeted a Poynter ethics committee chair, Indira Lakshmanan.

Paul Bedard, the Washington Examiner’s “Washington Secrets” columnist, can be contacted at