NBC White House correspondent Hallie Jackson called out both Sarah Sanders and Trump and questioned Trump’s credibility in a wild press briefing exchange.
Here was the exchange:
Jackson: So let me get my question out. This is the second time in three days that the president or the white house has come out and reversed what the president has said.
Sanders: Actually I’m interpreting what the president said.
Jackson: Why was this president —
Sanders: I was in the room as well and didn’t take it the way you did.
Jackson: Why should this president have any credibility to Americans in what he says if in fact 24 hours later or in this case three hours later the white house comes out and says just kidding.
Sanders: First of all, that’s not what I said. I was interpreting what the president’s intention was and stating the administration’s policy. It’s not exactly what you just explained. We never said “Just kidding.” And I think that you can take the fact that the president has credibility because he saw that he had misspoken and he wanted to clarify that yesterday, which he did. So when he sees that he’s misspoken, he comes out and says that. Jordan.
Jackson: My second question. Just to follow up on my second question — you told Josh the president —
Sanders: Once again, Hallie, I’m moving on to Jordan. Jordan, go ahead.
Jordan: Hallie, go ahead if you want.
Sanders: Actually I’m going to take a question from Jordan.
Jackson: I don’t remember a time the president has publicly called out Vladimir Putin.
Sanders: I think my stating the fact that the president said Russia interfered with our election that’s a pretty big callout of another leader. Jordan.
The press is fed up. They don’t sit there and tolerate being obviously lied to. It was interesting to see White House correspondents who are competitors for a story working together to cut off one of Sanders’ favorite tactics, which is that when she gets a question that she doesn’t like, she cuts the reporter off and moves on to someone else.
Sanders couldn’t name a specific example of Trump calling out Putin. When Trump did say that Putin interfered in the election, he added or it could be someone else. These White House briefings are no longer propaganda platforms, which is why Trump had all but eliminated the daily briefing.
The free press is pushing back, and the Trump administration can’t handle the questioning.
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Mr. Easley is the founder/managing editor and Senior White House and 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