In His Most Pathetic Move Yet, Sean Spicer Blames Reporters For Trump’s Cowardice

On the day when it came out that President Trump is thinking of only holding one White House briefing a week, White House press secretary went on Laura Ingraham’s radio show to blame the White House press pool for the Trump administration’s cowardice. You see, the real problem, according to Spicer, is the reporters want to be YouTube stars.

To punish reporters for having ambitions and doing their jobs, the Trump White House went dark on the free press. This is their narrative. You can’t make this stuff up.

White House press secretary Sean Spicer went on Laura Ingraham’s radio show to offer President Trump’s base a false talking point to justify the Trump White House’s cowardice, while smearing the reporters who cover the White House, saying they just want to become YouTube stars. Which is sort of a bizarre talking point from a reality TV show star, but the Trump administration isn’t known for their self-reflection.

Ingraham referred to the reporters as “vipers”, to set the tone that she doesn’t care about freedom one bit.

“There’s a lot of them that want to become YouTube stars and ask some snarky question that’s been asked eight times,” Spicer told Ingraham of the White House’s decision to go dark, although of course Spicer didn’t acknowledge that the White House has gone dark. We are deep in alternative fact universe here, so hang on.

The questions are being asked again and again because they are not being answered.

“And that’s right, that’s their right to do that. But it’s our job to make sure that we’re providing updates and readouts of what the president is doing and the advances he is making on his agenda,” Spicer said, pushing the goal post right past the importance of being able to ask questions that actually get answered, like ‘Does the President have a taping system in the Oval?’

“And so there is a bit of snarkiness now with the press because, again, a lot of them are more focused about getting their clip on air than they are of actually taking the time to understand an issue,” Spicer said, seemingly unaware that he was actually speaking about his boss, President Trump, and himself, rather than the White House press corp, because Spicer has done nothing as Press Secretary but offer propaganda in hopes of getting that clip on the air.

Freedom is not totally dead, y’all, because Spicer said it might be possible for the off-camera briefings to have audio and they turn the cameras off because this administration wants “substantive discussion.”

“The nice thing about turning the cameras off sometimes, and I find this, is that it is not performance art, as you call it, that you end up having, I think sometimes, a more substantive discussion about actual issues because they’re not trying to get their clip,” Spicer said.

“They’re not trying to figure out, ‘How do I get on TV? How do I ask some snarky question?’ You can actually focus on the substance of the issues,” the Press Secretary who uses his precious time to announce misleading, inflated propaganda to soothe his boss’ very fragile ego.

Freedom isn’t about forcing the press not to be “snarky”. They are allowed to be snarky, although I take issue with this description because the questions being asked are not snarky, they are vital and it’s not the reporters’ fault that this White House can’t or won’t answer them.

“And so days on which the president was speaking, we would generally do an off-camera gaggle. It’s a tradition that has been held for a while,” Spicer offered up rather desperately.

In fact, gaggles are less formal and often limited to only pool reporters, due to limited space or because they take place on Air Force One when the President is traveling.

There is no tradition of limiting access and doing briefings in the dark just because. There isn’t some magic that makes the press not need to know answers to questions about the White House’s position on an air strike, for instance, just because the President spoke elsewhere. This is conflation that suggests Spicer is saying the President answers questions directly. He does not, typically, and when he does, his answers can’t be taken on face value.

This refusal to answer questions is what leads to frustration by the press. The job of the press is to check the power of elected politicians, to get answers for the people. Their job is not to be nice to the President. This premise is absurd and just goes to indicate what a problem we have in Trump.

The Trump White House can’t answer even the most basic questions from reporters, like “Does the President believe in climate change?” So instead of doing their job by figuring out answers to easy questions like that, they’re blacking out press access and blaming reporters for doing their job.

This interview on Laura Ingraham’s show was nothing more than red meat for the base. It’s indicative of where the Right stands that they no longer care about freedom of the press or democracy, they will back Donald Trump even as he destroys the most basic checks and balances on his power.