On Thursday evening at 10:07 pm, President Donald Trump posted a tweet containing all of seven words — “FAKE NEWS - THE ENEMY OF THE PEOPLE!”
A short time later, CNN’s Don Lemon had to abruptly go to commercial break as CNN’s New York studio was evacuated because of a bomb threat.
According to the CNN, the network received a threat from a caller who said there were five explosive devices in the building. The network later said the threatening call “was received shortly before 10 pm,” before Trump posted his tweet. The NYPD said they responded to a call from CNN reporting the threat at 10:08 pm.
CNN ran prerecorded programming while the building was evacuated. Lemon broadcast from the street for a spell.
CNN's @vausecnn broke back in with live coverage at 11:18 PM EST and Don Lemon continued broadcasting from the street— Jon Levine (@LevineJonathan) December 7, 2018
"About an hour ago, a call was made from the south ... into the CNN offices in New York saying that there were several bombs ... inside of the building" pic.twitter.com/sBMRzdbyMi
Shortly before midnight, the NYPD determined that the threat wasn’t substantiated, and employees returned to the building.
Trump’s rhetoric has consequences
CNN is a regular target of Trump’s abuse. He has repeatedly attacked the network as “the enemy of the American People.”
CNN and others in the Fake News Business keep purposely and inaccurately reporting that I said the “Media is the Enemy of the People.” Wrong! I said that the “Fake News (Media) is the Enemy of the People,” a very big difference. When you give out false information - not good!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 30, 2018
What Trump says has consequences. CNN’s New York City studio had to be evacuated in October after it was sent an explosive device in the mail. It later emerged that Cesar Sayoc, the man behind that package bomb and others sent to prominent critics of the president, is an extreme Trump fan who had tweeted things like, “CNN Sucks.”
Hours before Sayoc’s arrest, Trump was unrepentant, tweeting that he found it “funny” that CNN “can criticize me at will, even blaming me for the current spate of bombs.”
Funny how lowly rated CNN, and others, can criticize me at will, even blaming me for the current spate of Bombs and ridiculously comparing this to September 11th and the Oklahoma City bombing, yet when I criticize them they go wild and scream, “it’s just not Presidential!”— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 26, 2018
Three days later, Trump suggested that the anger Sayoc and others feel toward the press is justified.
“There is great anger in our Country caused in part by inaccurate, and even fraudulent, reporting of the news” Trump tweeted, adding that “The Fake News Media” is “the true Enemy of the People.”
There is great anger in our Country caused in part by inaccurate, and even fraudulent, reporting of the news. The Fake News Media, the true Enemy of the People, must stop the open & obvious hostility & report the news accurately & fairly. That will do much to put out the flame...— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 29, 2018
Trump’s tweet attacking the “FAKE NEWS” on Thursday night came amid a string of tweets in which he attacked law enforcement and pushed unfounded conspiracy theories about special counsel Robert Mueller’s active criminal investigation of his campaign.