RNC spokesperson Sean Spicer was put on the spot on MSNBC, and when asked to defend Donald Trump, one of the top party officials in the country fell flat on his face.
Transcript via Media Matters:
STEPHANIE RUHLE (HOST): I want to bring in Sean Spicer and really get his reaction to this. He’s the communications director of the RNC. Sean, first I want to say thank you. Clearly you’re in the hot seat. This is not the easiest interview for you to react to. But you listened to it. You heard Hillary Clinton detail essentially the reasons why one could say Donald Trump is a racist. What do you think about that?
SEAN SPICER: Well, honestly, I think it’s somewhat desperate because, look, the Trump campaign is wrapping up probably the most successful second week that it’s had this cycle, and Clinton is having the second worst campaign, started off — last week when they started having to defend the Iran hostage swap ransom money and then these allegations of the emails coming out, and more and more quid pro quo, pay for play with the Clinton Foundation, and so she is pivoting. And she’s now going to start attacking Donald Trump and making up things. Look at what — I mean, literally is she? [She] put an ad yesterday trying to link white supremacists and racism, and this is sort of a new low – go ahead.
RUHLE: Hold on then. Whether — Sean, whether it was a desperate act or not, all those things that she laid out that Donald Trump has said or done, were any of them incorrect?
SPICER: Well, I think the video that they put out yesterday was unbelievably over the top. I mean, I haven’t seen anything like that in 30 years of politics, and the idea that people don’t think that that’s unacceptable– she went out, cherry-picked some supporters, some people that have attended rallies or are supporting Donald Trump. I mean, I could equally have walked through Philadelphia during the DNC and found a bunch of people that have way outlandish, far left-wing, crazy ideas, and done the same thing and made them answer for it, which I think we should probably do as well. I think the idea that they have gone to that level of desperation shows that they know that the polls are closing, and they know that their stale, status quo message isn’t resonating with the American people.
RUHLE: You don’t think, you don’t think —
Sean Spicer is the RNC’s top spokesperson and as of late has been working closely with the Trump campaign in an attempt to try to right the messaging ship. However, when asked exactly what was inaccurate about Clinton’s speech on the alt-right and Trump’s history of racist behavior and discrimination, Spicer couldn’t name a single thing.
The strategy for Republicans in this election is to avoid talking about their own nominee at all costs. When Spicer was asked a question about Trump, he tried to change the subject to Hillary Clinton. Spicer’s horrid interview was a byproduct of the fact that the RNC’s entire strategy for years was to make the 2016 presidential election all about Clinton.
The Republican-led Congressional “investigations” into Benghazi and other right-wing conspiracy theories were designed to center the 2016 election around Hillary Clinton. When Donald Trump won the Republican nomination, he destroyed years of GOP strategy. The election is about Trump, and Republicans have no answers for their nominee’s history of discriminatory behavior.
Republicans have been put on the defensive, and viewers can expect to see a lot more bad interview’s like Spicer’s, if party officials are forced to answer for Trump and the alt-right’s behavior.
Mr. Easley is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association