Despite criticism from Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton does not need to hold a press conference at this time.
The Washington Post reports that Trump called attention to the length of time that Clinton has gone without hosting a press conference during his town hall interview with Fox News' Sean Hannity.
“She hasn't had a news conference in like 250 days,” Trump said.
When Trump made the claim on Aug. 17, his guess was short of the actual number of days since Clinton’s last press conference. According to The Washington Post’s Phillip Bump, Clinton had not given a press conference in 258 days.
Trump’s comment seems to have ignited a desire among the American people and the media to hear Clinton speak.
On Aug. 23, Google Trends tweeted that the top trending question about Clinton for the previous 24 hours was, “When was Hillary’s last press conference?”
“She is being protected by the government, definitely,” Trump told Hannity. "I mean, how she got away with the emails is beyond anything I've ever seen in justice. But I have to say, she's being protected, and she's being protected by the media."
In some respects, Trump is correct. Clinton is out of the media’s line of fire much more than he is. But his argument falls apart when he claims that the media and the government are guarding the Democratic nominee in a special way.
Presidential candidates are not required to hold press conferences. Clinton is protecting herself by being smart.
Right-wing website Info Wars suggests Clinton might avoid media attention specifically to avoid questions about her past surrounding her use of a private email server during her time as secretary of state.
This reasoning is justified. As the possible future president of the United States, Clinton wants to move forward and discontinue discussions of her past.
Of course, she receives less criticism than the man who numerous news sources have accused of making distasteful and ignorant comments.
“If one can get past the racism and blatant disregard for the Constitution, the remarkable thing is how flabbergastingly ignorant Trump is about contemporary terrorism and counterterrorism,” a Time magazine reporter said.
Clinton knows that holding a press conference would just provide a venue for criticism rather than a source of information for the American people.
Clinton does not need to hold a formal press conference because the media is so attentive to every interview, release of information or political update that a conference would discuss.
According to information posted on Mediaite, Clinton has participated in more than 300 public interviews in 2016. Those 300 interviews provide the media, the American people and her opponent plenty of information to evaluate her public speaking abilities, policy decisions and promises during the months before the election.
“I don’t think it’s fair to say that someone is shying away from tough questions when they have taken over 300 interviews from reporters,” Clinton’s campaign manager Robby Mook said on "Face the Nation," according to The Washington Free Beacon. "We tried to have the interns look at how many questions she took, which is a much bigger number as you would appreciate, and we haven’t even finished tallying that."
Clinton is not suffering from a lack of transparency, she is not avoiding media attention completely, and she certainly does not need to hold a formal press conference.