White House Press Office Gives Up Trying to Explain Trump

White House Press Office Gives Up Trying to Explain Trump January 2, 2019

For the first few months of the Trump administration, Sean Spicer held almost daily press briefings. When Sarah Huckabee Sanders took over, she continued that practice for a while, but now it’s only a handful of times a month, if that. And now the Washington Post reports that the White House press office has pretty much given up on even responding to press inquiries at all, and especially trying to explain Trump’s often bizarre claims.

Instead of “no comment,” Trump’s press representatives often don’t bother saying anything at all…

The White House has had no response to stories large and small in recent days: reports that Trump planned to meet with Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome H. Powell, whom he has criticized (no response to Agence France-Presse); the partial shutdown of the federal government (no response to Reuters or USA Today); a report by an advocacy group that wealthy donors gave $55 million to groups supporting his reelection, despite Trump’s stated opposition to such donations during the 2016 campaign (no response to The Washington Post); Trump’s statement that former secretary of state Rex Tillerson was “dumb as a rock” (no response to CNBC); a piece in the Times reporting that a podiatrist may have helped Trump dodge the draft when Trump was a young man at the height of the Vietnam War.

At the same time, the White House seems to have all but stopped explaining Trump’s bizarre tweets.

After Trump tweeted on Christmas Eve that the border wall “will be built with the Shutdown money plus funds already in hand,” the New York Times sought comment from the White House about what “shutdown money’’ was. It got no response.

It’s hard to blame them. No matter what they say, Trump is likely to contradict it in his next flurry of incoherent tweets, or in an interview with Fox News. It’s a no-win situation for them. But I sure as hell don’t feel sorry for them. Don’t want to get stuck defending and explaining his maniacal ramblings? Then you shouldn’t have gone to work for him in the first place. It’s not like his behavior has changed. This is who he’s always been and you either were too dim to notice it or you just didn’t care. So I’ll not be shedding a tear for you now or, inevitably, when you find out as Sean Spicer has that there’s nowhere to go once you’ve destroyed your credibility with your daily lies.

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