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Tag Archives: Sean Spicer

Priebus, Spicer Weaned Trump Off MSNBC and CNN

Former White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus and ex-Press Secretary Sean Spicer got President Trump to stop watching CNN and MSNBC in the morning – basically as a matter of survival since it was forcing them to spend the day dealing with his reactions, according to the New Yorker.

“Early on, usually we could count on the president watching Morning Joe first thing, at 6 a.m.,” one White House official told me. “He’d watch an hour of that. Then he’d move on to New Day for a segment or two. Then he’d move on to Fox.”

Senior staffers worried about this pattern of behavior: By the time his day was formally under way with the daily intelligence briefing in the Oval Office — scheduled as late as 11 a.m. — the whole world was often thrown off course, wondering whether there were “tapes” of his conversations with a fired FBI director (May 12, 2017, 8:26 a.m.) or if a TV host had been “bleeding badly from a face-lift” at Mar-a-Lago (June 29, 2017, 8:58 a.m.).

With the hope of calming him down, then–chief of staff Reince Priebus and then–press secretary Sean Spicer began a subtle campaign. “It got to the point that they were just like, ‘We need to get him off these channels and onto Fox & Friends or else we’re going to be chasing down this crazy-train bullshit from MSNBC and CNN all day,’ ” one former White House official said.

Like all other ideas, this had the highest chance of implementation if Trump believed he’d thought of it on his own. Priebus and Spicer worked talking points about the network’s high ratings and importance to his base of supporters into conversation until, eventually, it stuck, so that the president’s television consumption is today what the current White House official called “mainly a complete dosage of Fox.” The former official added, “Trump’s someone who loves praise more than he likes hate-watching Morning Joe.”

Look, everyone mocks President Trump for tuning into Fox all the time. But think about it. How could anyone survive psychologically hearing wall-to-wall negative commentary about oneself?

Sure, Trump can be volatile and reacts strongly to things, but nobody could live like this. The mainstream media spends almost no time on Trump’s accomplishments – not even looking for ones that aren’t obvious – and constantly focuses on bad news about him. Often, what’s written – especially that labeled as “news analysis” – is op-ed stuff by journalists who simply won’t even try anymore to check their opinions at the door.

I’m glad to hear he has at last stopped watching Morning Joe, which has been on an anti-Trump Jihad for more than a year and has simply become unwatchable because it is obviously just a personal tool for the agenda of its hosts, Mika Brzezinski and Joe Scarborough. And I’m glad he’s instead on the couch at Fox and Friends, lest he end up on the couch of a medical professional.

Spicer Becomes a “Pariah” and Washington Affirms Its Hypocrisy

Other than possibly making money off the speaking circuit, former White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer is apparently unemployable. His “dishonesty” from the podium and the notoriety brought by Mellissa McCarthy’s Saturday Night Live sendups have made Spicer the man nobody in Washington wants.

In an excellent and not necessarily unsympathetic piece, Politico media columnist Jack Shafer writes that Spicer is unique in the annals of Washington in that he doesn’t seem to be able to get a new Washington gig or bounce back from his own infamy.

Shafer writes:

Since leaving the White House this summer, he has gained admittance to a circle of one: He has become a Washington pariah. Nobody wants to be anywhere near him, but everyone wants to talk smack about him. He’s not just a punchline. He’s become a national laughing stock ever since his cameo on the Emmy Awards this week, where he attempted a joke about his most famous White House lie.

It seems anyone can have a second act in Washington except Spicer.

Washington routinely forgives its philanderers, drug addicts and alcoholics, embezzlers, perjurers, bribers and bribees, liars, burglars and tax evaders, granting them the redemption of another term in office or a job in a lobbying shop or think tank after their scandal passes. It even absolved a drunk who killed a young lady, giving him a prince’s funeral when he died.

The last line, for those of you who only know him as “the Lion of the Senate,” is a reference to Ted Kennedy, who killed Mary Jo Kopechne when he drunk-drove off a bridge with her, left the scene, and then failed to alert authorities for hours. And liberals who worshipped Kennedy are worried about Donald Trump’s treatment of women.

Sure, Sean went a little too far at times, even for a White House flack. But every presidential press secretary lies. That’s the job. I’d say the only two press secretaries I’ve seen in 20 years covering the White House who made a serious attempt to tell the truth were Dana Perino and the late Tony Snow, who each worked for George W. Bush.

Sean made the mistake of not being as smooth at it as others and doing it for a Republican, sins that got him lampooned on SNL.

The dirty little secret in Washington is that everyone likes Sean. He willingly took on a role in which he was directed to be extremely confrontational, but Spicer has been around for years and probably maintains most of the goodwill he had built up as a guy who was knowledgeable, tried to be helpful, and was easy to be with. But now he’s got the cooties bigtime, and no one will touch him.

Of course, while he was press secretary, confrontational or not, everyone was kissing his feet begging for access and information. The same networks that today won’t hire him as a commentator because he supposedly lacks credibility would gladly have had Spicer on the TV tube to talk all he wanted when he was powerful. Now that nobody needs him, Washington’s hypocrites have mounted their high horses to trample Spicer with abandon.

Who knows, maybe Trump will bring him back. Then everyone will get off their high horse, because it’s difficult from there to get to his feet.

Sean Spicer Cashes In

Former White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer is going to make some serious money pretty soon.

He has signed up with Worldwide Speakers Group, which will schedule him for engagements talking to various business groups that will pay top dollar to have Sean address their members. “Few in Washington are as well-equipped as Sean to pull back the curtain and dissect what’s really happening in the nation’s capital,” WSG proclaims

Well, that’s certainly true, Sean has been around forever, serving as communications director for George W. Bush’s trade representative before doing the comms job, as well as strategizing, for the Republican National Committee.

He’s become a household name since getting lampooned on Saturday Night Live, a treatment he pretty much deserved. But let’s be clear, while the lengths Sean had to go to were at times a little longer, every White House press secretary deceives the public. They all pretend otherwise, but that’s their job.

Sean has labored for the Republican cause for years, taking jobs with the government and the RNC instead of grabbing much more lucrative PR gigs in the private sector. I’m glad to see he’ll be making a lot money.

Here’s the video of Melissa McCarthy doing Spicer on SNL. Personally, I think it’s one of the funniest bits I’ve ever seen on the show. I felt bad for Sean, but it became his ticket to fame . . . and now, fortune.

Sean Spicer Resigns as White House Press Secretary

White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer Friday resigned following the appointment of financier Anthony Scaramucci as communications director.

According to Politico, Scaramucci had the support of Jared Kushner, Ivanka Trump, National Economic Council Director Gary Cohn, and Deputy National Security Adviser Dina Powell and was opposed by White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus and Spicer.

The appointment seems a major blow to Priebus. Priebus and Spicer are extremely close and had for years run the Republican National Committee together, with Priebus and its chief and Spicer as director of communications. President Trump has repeatedly expressed frustration with Priebus to associates, but has so far kept him on.

Scaramucci has served as a TV surrogate for Trump and has long backed the president. With Spicer’s departure, Sarah Huckabee Sanders was named White House press secretary.

Report: Spicer Leading Search for Own Replacement

From Politico:

White House press secretary Sean Spicer is leading a search for his own replacement at the briefing room podium as part of a larger plan to shake up the White House communications operations, according to two people with knowledge of the effort.

Last week, Spicer and White House chief of staff Reince Priebus reached out to Fox News personality Laura Ingraham about the role of press secretary and Daily Mail editor David Martosko about the role of communications director, according to a White House official.

Spicer and Priebus have had preliminary discussions with Ingraham and Martosko met with chief strategist Steve Bannon last week, according to the White House official.

Ingraham declined to comment. In a phone call, Martosko said “I can’t hear you,” and then hung up. He did not respond to an e-mail inquiry.

Spicer Doesn’t Quite Say that Trump Has Confidence in Rosenstein

White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer Monday gave an unusual answer when asked if President Trump had confidence in Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, offering up instead a meaningless statement that the president has confidence in everyone who works for him.

First of all, that’s doubtful. I’ve never known a boss who had confidence in everyone working for them and wasn’t itching to fire someone.

But either way, that’s not one I’ve heard before fro a White House Press secretary, though I wouldn’t rule out that some such thing has been said. Does the president have confidence in . . . ?  is a time-honored question at the White House that is either answered with a direct statement of confidence or a dodge. Today’s answer was a dodge.

Rosenstein of course is responsible for appointing Robert Mueller as special counsel to investigate the Russia collusion charges. Or more accurately, Russia collusion hearsay.

Trump tweeted Friday: “I am being investigated for firing the FBI Director by the man who told me to fire the FBI Director! Witch Hunt.” That would be Rosenstein, who wrote a letter supporting the removal of James Comey, and for whom Mueller technically works.

Good chance Rosenstein will either be fired or quit in a huff over the dissing from the White House.

Spicer Can’t Say Whether Trump Has Confidence in Sessions

White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer today did that old Washington dance that sometimes augurs the end for a presidential advisor, declining to say that President Trump has confidence in Attorney General Jeff Sessions. “I have not had a discussion with him about that,” Spicer said under repeated questioning from CBS’s Major Garrett. “If I… Continue Reading

Trump May Take Spicer Off the Briefings

President Trump is considering curtailing the role of White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer, ending his time at the lectern doing on-camera briefings, scaling back the sessions altogether, and possibly revamping his press team. According to Politico: The press secretary, who has turned into a household name over the past five months and garnered sky-high television ratings… Continue Reading