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Levin: Media claims that Trump is the worst president for press freedom are 'illiterate when it comes to history'

Some prominent voices in legacy media complain that President Donald Trump is the worst U.S. president ever for press freedom, but LevinTV host Mark Levin says that's "because they're illiterate when it comes to history."

On Sunday night's episode of "Life, Liberty & Levin" on Fox, Levin explained to Fox News' Pete Hegseth that past presidents have done far worse to journalists and news outlets than simply call them fake news or criticize their reporting, as President Trump has been criticized for doing.

For example, John Adams and Abraham Lincoln outright jailed some journalists, while FDR used the IRS to go after the media and the Obama administration FBI targeted the New York Times' James Risen and Fox News' James Rosen.

"To say this president, by calling a particular reporter or news operation 'fake news,' is like a dictator, 'it's the worst thing we've ever seen,' is so absurd, is so outrageous," Levin said. "I'm not aware that he's used the FBI, or the IRS, or a Sedition Act to shut down anybody or put anybody in prison, and yet if you ask the Left about FDR, they love FDR."

Levin cites the history in his forthcoming book, "Unfreedom of the Press," which details the history of American journalism from what he calls the "patriot press" that helped spark and support the American Revolution through the Progressive Era to the present day.

Later in the interview, Levin told Hegseth that if the members of the Revolutionary-era patriot press were to look at today's media, they'd be "astonished at how monolithic it is. ... I think Thomas Paine would be absolutely disgusted."

"The media is destroying the free press," Levin explained. "I make a distinction between the media and a free press.We have mostly a media."

You can watch video of the interview here.

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