The two most visible members of Donald Trump’s administration are Counselor to the President Kellyanne Conway and White House Press. They have both betrayed the American people.
Secretary Sarah Sanders suddenly announced she was leaving her job after two and one-half years working in the Donald Trump administration. She followed Sean Spicer into office, and put her own special spin on the job. What she did was a betrayal of the American people, particularly as one White House correspondent, CNN’s White House Correspondent Jim Acosta saw it.
NPR’s Lulu Garcia-Navarro hosts Morning Edition Sunday and interviewed CNN’s Jim Acosta about what it has been like to work with the Counselor to the President Kellyanne Conway and Sanders. He also spoke about his new book Enemy of the People:
”TALKING TO @LOURDESGNAVARRO ON @NPR @MORNINGEDITION AT THE TOP OF THE HOUR ABOUT THE SUDDEN DEPARTURE OF THE WH PRESS SECRETARY, PLUS MY NEW BOOK “THE ENEMY OF THE PEOPLE.”’
An ethics watchdog government agency, the Office of the Special Counsel (OSC) (not Robert Mueller’s office) had just called for the president to fire Conway in an extremely rare move. It claimed that she had repeatedly broken the Hatch Act, which has prohibited most members of the administration from being involved in political activities and speech. All presidents and vice presidents are exempt.
When a reporter asked Conway about it, her response was “Blah, blah, blah. . . . Let me know when the jail sentence starts.” Conway understood the law, but she simply did not care.
Acosta said that Donald Trump defended her and considered the Hatch Act “no big deal.” POTUS considered it an issue of free speech, which it is not. Then, CNN’s correspondent said this about both Sanders and Conway:
‘THEY IGNORE THE GUARDRAILS OF DEMOCRACY AND CHART THEIR OWN PATHS WITH NO REGARD FOR THE NORMS, TRADITIONS, AND EVEN LAWS.’
Acosta noted that both of the women have a “record of dishonesty and not playing it straight.”
Garcia-Navarro asked him about the impact of the “briefing room,” and he replied:
‘THERE HAVE BEEN MULTIPLE EPISODES OF GIVING FALSE INFORMATION. SARAH HAS LOST SIGHT OF THAT SHE DOES NOT WORK FOR THE PRESIDENT. SHE WORKS FOR THE PEOPLE. SEAN SPICER SET THE TONE THAT VERY FIRST DAY WHEN HE CAME OUT AND SAID THE INAUGURAL CROWD WAS THE “BIGGEST IN HISTORY.”‘
Earlier, Acosta tweeted:
‘WHAT WOULD BE OUR SENSE OF THE TRUTH AND REALITY IF WE HAD NOT BEEN FACT CHECKING TRUMP OVER THE LAST TWO YEARS? FROM MY CONVERSATION ON #NPR.’
Acosta continued with the interview:
‘YOU CAN’T TRUST WHAT THEY SAY. THEN, AT THE END OF THEIR TENURE, SHE (SANDERS) HAS BEEN GETTING CAUGHT IN MISSTATEMENTS AND FALSEHOODS, WHICH IS A VIOLATION OF THE PUBLIC TRUST.’
Garcia-Navarro noted that some people consider Acosta’s manner to be “grandstanding.” The correspondent replied:
‘BEING AGGRESSIVE AND OUTSPOKEN IS WHAT THE PEOPLE EXPECT.’
Then, the NPR host delved further into the nonexistent White House briefings. Acosta responded:
‘IT’S IMPORTANT. QUESTIONS THEY ANSWER OR DON’T ANSWER. THE PRESIDENT HAS HAD 100,000 FALSEHOODS, MISSTATEMENTS. WE ARE FACT-CHECKING IN REAL TIME. HE’S FACTUALLY CHALLENGED. HIS TRUTH, HIS REALITY IS PRETTY DARN WARPED.’
Sanders is the daughter of former Arkansas governor and presidential candidate Jim Huckabee and grew up at her father’s political knee. She has not held a press briefing in 90 days. Acosta said that what she typically does is an exclusive with Fox News on the White House drive. Then, if she has time, she will answer a few questions from the rest of them, the gaggle:
‘THERE’S NO RECORD OF THE GAGGLE. THERE’S ALSO THE PRINT AND FOREIGN MEDIA. IT’S A DANGEROUS TIME TO TELL THE TRUTH.’