CNN contributor April Ryan believes White House press secretary Sarah Sanders should have to pay for the reporter’s security costs.
“Oh, I get approached a lot, when I’m walking from my car, when I’m walking to my car, when I eat. Anywhere I go. I mean, they have put a target on my head, and I don’t know who’s who sometimes,” Ryan told The Hollywood Reporter in an interview published on Tuesday.
“I’ve had death threats. I’ve had craziness … Do I have a bodyguard? Yes, I do. Am I paying for it? Yes, I am. And, I think [Sanders] should have to pay for it, especially if she’s stirring it up with her boss,” she added.
Ryan, who is a White House correspondent for American Urban Radio Networks, did not state why her employer is not paying for her security.
The reporter is currently promoting her book, “Under Fire: Reporting from the Front Lines of the Trump White House,” due to be released next month.
“What’s happening is unprecedented. I am a member of the press corps, one of the deans of the press corps now… I’ve been under attack. And lied on. Treated terribly. And if I don’t tell the story, you won’t get it. So, I’m putting it out there, because people see one side of it,” said Ryan.
“They’re still very angry at me for asking the question, ‘Mr. President, are you a racist?’ And that’s why I’m on a list,” she claimed. “Since when is asking a question of a president making you a criminal? Or making you an ‘enemy of the people’?”
Ryan explained that she is on a “blacklist” of White House reporters that includes CNN chief White House correspondent Jim Acosta and CNN White House correspondent Kaitlan Collins.
Ryan stated that Sanders “should be ashamed of herself for going out there, saying some of the things that she’s said. She tries to insult my intelligence. And not just my intelligence, the world’s intelligence.”
The reporter recounted that Sanders has tried to bridge the gap between them baking her a pie, and the two also went to dinner, but Ryan charged that the press secretary “continues to berate me.”
In an interview with Variety in April, Acosta and Ryan raised the specter of Trump’s negative rhetoric toward the media leading to a journalist getting physically injured.
“The moment that a journalist gets hurt in the United States of America because of rhetoric coming from the president of the United States, we have suddenly become something less than the United States,” Acosta said.
Ryan agreed adding, “Sarah (Sanders), anyone in there in the administration who is calling the media fake, is throwing gasoline on the fire.”
Earlier this month Acosta pushed Sanders to state that the media is not the enemy of the American people.
“I think it would be a good thing if you were to say right here, at this briefing, that the press … are not the enemy of the people. I think we deserve that,” he said.
Sanders fired back: “It’s ironic, Jim, that not only you and the media attack the president for his rhetoric when they frequently lower the level of conversation in this country. Repeatedly, repeatedly the media resorts to personal attacks without any content other than to incite anger.”
“The media has attacked me personally on a number of occasions, including your own network; said I should be harassed as a life sentence, that I should be choked,” she continued. “When I was hosted by the Correspondent’s Association, of which almost all of you are members of, you brought a comedian up to attack my appearance, and call me a traitor to my own gender.”
Sanders further pointed out, “(A)s I know, as far as I know, I’m the first press secretary in the history of the United States that’s required Secret Service protection.”
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