A small plane violated the local airspace Tuesday morning, and the White House was out on lockdown.
I wasn’t there, but during the first moments of such a thing, there’s usually confusion about what is happening, and it can be a little scary. Sometimes the lack of information can persist for quite a while.
President Trump and Mrs. Trump are at the White House. Not clear to me if they were taken wherever they get taken during a threat, somewhere deep below the White House. Stocked, I presume with enough Big Macs to last for several months.
Capitol Hill was also evacuated.
I was once evacuated from the White House during such a moment, along with all the staff, with people shouting at us to run. Not pleasant.
White House Press Secretary Stephanie Grisham Monday said the White House has no plans to bring back the daily briefing.
“Ultimately, if the president decides that it’s something we should do, we can. Right now, he’s doing just fine,” Grisham said. “To be honest, the briefings had become a lot of theater.”
She noted the benefit accruing to the reporters.
“They are writing books now. I mean, they are all getting famous off of this presidency, and so I think it’s great what we are doing now,” Grisham said.
It’s a shame there are no televised briefings, they can be a useful way to hold the White House to account. And forcing the White House to think through its answers helps the president and his aides organize and settle their policies. Grisham should at least allow off-camera briefings, which also, long ago, used to occur on a daily basis a few hours before the televised briefing.
But unfortunately, the White House press corps has lost the credibility to make these arguments.
Many members of the White House press corps are serious journalists trying to do their job. But there are also many who are obviously out to get President Trump. And others who might not have an agenda, but who regularly fail to check their bias at the White House gate. And, of course, a few who are complete showboaters, just looking for attention.
Sources said Trump’s tweet Monday recalled a little-known truth: Although Scaramucci was dismissed after disparaging other senior officials in a profane interview, he was on the verge of being fired anyhow.
“The dirty secret was the interview escalated it. The reality was [other] things, that’s where [White House chief of staff John] Kelly lost his shit,” a source familiar with Scaramucci’s termination said. “Everyone in the press watched the expletive-laced tirade and no one went, ‘What else caused it?’”
Kelly, whose first official day as chief of staff was July 31, made firing Scaramucci one of his first official acts. Kelly replaced former Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus, who had been ousted as chief of staff a few days earlier.
Scaramucci’s gravest human resources sin featured telling a female White House official that he heard she was sleeping with a more senior male official, many sources said.
The allegation was widely viewed by sources as “gross” and a clear attempt to intimidate and humiliate the woman.
Well, there’s no Christmas party for the White House press corps this year. President Trump has nixed it.
Every year, the press is invited to feast on White House delicacies, have cocktails, and then meet and get a photo with the first lady and the president. I’ve been to many of these parties – although the Obamas stopped inviting me because they didn’t like me, and I didn’t get an invite last year, probably by mistake – and I can assure you they are wonderful affairs. The lamb chops and the shrimp cocktail are the best you’ve ever tasted.
But who can blame Trump? The press corps invited a comedian who hates Trump to perform at its annual dinner last spring. And the coverage is relentlessly negative.
Why invite a group of people who hate you and who are biased in their work when they claim to be neutral to come party with you?
There’s plenty of grumbling about this, I’ve been told by others who are more connected to the other White House reporters. I’m sure you are all broken up about it and grieving for them . . .
This is a video I took Monday in the briefing room at the White House. Gives you a bit of an idea what it’s like to be in the room with White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders and the reporters.
Here, she argues that the media are partially responsible for the divisions in the country and says just maybe they could occasionally say something nice about President Trump:
You guys have a huge responsibility to play in the divisive nature of this country, when 90 percent of the coverage of everything this President does is negative, despite the fact that the country is doing extremely well, despite the fact that the President is delivering on exactly what he said he was going to do if elected. And he got elected by an overwhelming majority of 63 million Americans who came out and supported him, and wanted to see his policies enacted.
He’s delivered on that. He’s delivered on the promises he’s made. And, if anything, I think it is sad and divisive the way that every single thing that comes out of the media — 90 percent of what comes out of the media’s mouth is negative about this President, despite the fact that the economy is booming, despite the fact he said he would fix the trade deals.
He said he would defeat ISIS and he has. The President has been delivering day in and day out. And I think it would be nice if, every once and a while, we could focus on a few of the positive things the President has done, instead of just attacking him.
This urgent bulletin today from the White House. Among other repairs being done while President Trump is at his club in New Jersey on a working vacation . . . The restrooms on the ground floor and second floor of the West Wing have not been modernized in approximately 40 years. The planned infrastructure improvements… Continue Reading
Okay, that’s a little dramatic. They’ll keep some “Key senior people,” in the White House communications office, which seems to be a very leaky ship after word emerged from a meeting of communications staff that White House aide Kelly Sadler had said Sen. John McCain’s vote on the CIA director didn’t matter because he was… Continue Reading
Reports are circulating that we will see a major house cleaning at the White House to try to exterminate leakers on the White House communications staff. How do we know? Probably the senior White House staffers who themselves leak all the time – and will do the firing – let reporters in on it. I… Continue Reading
White House Counselor Kellyanne Conway Monday evening said she expects heads to roll as the result of leaks of a comment White House communications aide Kelly Sadler made during an internal meeting. “I had several discussions with the president on this very topic today,” Conway said on Fox News, another way of saying that President Trump… Continue Reading