(New York, NY) — The Trump administration said it was compiling a “dossier” on Washington Post reporter David Farenthold and other reporters covering the president’s businesses. PEN America’s Nora Benavidez, director of U.S. free expression programs, said the following:

“The White House is practicing one of President Trump’s favorite tactics: to target journalists whose coverage he dislikes in an effort to silence them. Such blatant attempts to intimidate or discredit professional journalists, whose job it is to uncover and stand up for the truth, should fail, but a U.S. administration wielding the power of the state against a free press has more insidious, far-reaching effects. The danger this type of retaliation poses to journalists everywhere—and to the people who would learn from their work—is one of the reasons PEN America sued President Trump in 2018, and it’s why we must all continue to speak out in defense of press freedom and the First Amendment.”

PEN America sued the Trump administration in 2018 to stop using the mechanisms of government to punish reporters. Learn more here.