Tag: Sean Spicer

White House Week: A Very Different Bookend [Weekend Update]


[Updated with highlighted transcripts, commentary, and more video.]

The last week of April started with a Monday like recent Mondays, President Trump and the Coronavirus Task Force battling the Democrats posing as reporters. President Trump then changed the media programming formula with a very different look Tuesday through Thursday. There were meetings with three governors, one Republican and two Democrats. The president and the governors came across as competent leaders working together through a crisis. There were events highlighting one group or another of Americans affected by both the virus and the known side effects of Dr. Fauci’s prescription for America. Meanwhile, the Vice President was out of Washington, visiting the Mayo Clinic and then a repurposed GM plant where ventilators were already stacking up on shelves for shipment. I characterized the week as “from the White House Whirlwind Tuesday, through the Wednesday Whirlwind, to the Thursday Twister.” So, would there be another big-time wrestling battle royale on Friday?

No! Instead, President Trump turned the new queen of the cage, Kayleigh “Crusher” McEnany loose on the unsuspecting White House press corps. Their executives should have thrown in the towel, as she outmaneuvered the whole room. That happened earlier in the afternoon, clearing the way for another controlled, presidential event: “Presidential Recognition Ceremony: Hard Work, Heroism, and Hope.” You can hear the left grinding its teeth all across the country.

Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America applaud Republicans for backing Attorney General Jeff Session even in the midst of President’s Trumps invective against him, including the warning from Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley that there is no time left in 2017 to consider another person as attorney general. They express their continuing disgust as six Senate Republicans who voted to repeal Obamacare in 2015 refused to do so now. And they fume as former House Majority Leader Eric Cantor admits Republicans never believed they could repeal Obamacare if they took back control of Congress but used voter anger and expectations to win elections. Finally, rumors are swirling that former White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer might join the cast of the ABC reality show, Dancing With the Stars.

Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America rib Democrats for their new “Better Deal” agenda which looks a lot like their old agenda. The hysterics continue at Pennsylvania Avenue following the resignation of Sean Spicer and the hiring of Anthony Scaramucci, with more possible changes on the horizon for Jeff Sessions and other characters; Jim and Greg remind Americans of Scaramucci’s not-so-conservative political past. It’s unclear what the Twitterverse expected from Discovery Channel’s “Great Gold vs. Great White” event in which Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps “raced” a great white shark, but they are outraged by the use of CGI in place of a real shark — much to Jim and Greg’s amusement.

Member Post


Next on Thinking It Through with Jerome Danner:  I invited a writer and thinker who is influencing me more and more after I heard him on the Eric Metaxas Show.  Dr. John Zmirak is a writer for The Stream and he was a great guest to talk to about President Donald Trump’s first 100 days in office. https://jeromedanner.net/2017/04/15/episode-32-jzmirak-of-streamdotorg-on-trumps-first-100-days-john-zmirak-of-the-stream/ Preview […]

Join Ricochet!

This is a members-only post on Ricochet's Member Feed. Want to read it? Join Ricochet’s community of conservatives and be part of the conversation. Join Ricochet for Free.

Who Can Put an End to This Gaffe Travesty?


I’ve been waiting for someone to proclaim “enough is enough” on the Sean Spicer gaffe attack. I agree that it was a stupid thing to say and was definitely a foot-in-mouth moment, arguably his first and only one. The rule is supposed to be, you do not go into hiding and wait for the storm to pass, you get in front of the cameras, admit you said something stupid, take responsibility for your actions, and apologize. That’s how you do it.

Sean Spicer did all that, on every channel, in front of some of the most hostile anti-Trump MSM-DNC Agents out there.

Member Post


  Sean Spicer will be immediately enrolled into a Dale Carnegie Course for public speaking as a government reform measure. The move follows his did he really just say that? faux pas dropping a ‘Hitler didn’t use gas’ reference in a formal White House Press briefing discussing the Syria situation with national media, world media, […]

Join Ricochet!

This is a members-only post on Ricochet's Member Feed. Want to read it? Join Ricochet’s community of conservatives and be part of the conversation. Join Ricochet for Free.

JV Journalism


Over at The Federalist, @molliehemingway makes an excellent (and rather subtle) argument regarding the press and President Donald Trump. Partial summary:

  1. Several big, recent news stories — some subsequently unproven or discredited — rely on anonymous sources.
  2. Trump and Spicer publicly gripe about it.
  3. Several journalists throw it back at them, pointing out incidents where Trump relied on anonymous sources (specifically, the birther stuff).
  4. Journalists miss that the logical (and highly ironic) conclusion to be drawn from their barbs at Trump is that anonymous sources cannot be trusted.

The smarter response to the administration’s carping would have been to point out incidents where carefully vetted, anonymous sources were both accurate and central to the story’s reporting. This, however, would have taken a little thought and wouldn’t have been as emotionally satisfying as making fun of Trump and Spicer.

Changes in the Daily White House Briefing


With the demise in trust of national news organizations, I now go directly to primary sources. I’ve been watching the Daily White House briefing (at least, the initial briefing). For the first time, they skyped in some local news organizations. Imagine if your own local news personality was one of those asking questions. It connects the administration to — and allowing a direct dialogue with — local cities, bypassing the national news. Brilliant.

Here’s the first question, from a Rhode Island news show on sanctuary cities:

Tempest in a Mall? Not really


“Why care about the crowd size on the Mall for an inauguration, and whether Trump’s was the biggest ever? Why make Sean Spicer’s press conference about it a big story?” Good question. Here’s my answer.

I’m one who agrees in not caring about the issue on a first approach. Does the size of an inaugural crowd has any relation to how well a President will govern? Not that I can see. What’s more, Friday’s event drew a very big audience both in person and in domestic viewership, more than respectable, even if not as big as Reagan I and Obama I. Trump could reasonably point out that more of his strongest followers live far from DC and may not have means to travel for a Friday midday event. TV viewership ratings become ever less certain with Internet viewing, especially the large audience outside the US. In short, I don’t think the White House would have gotten in trouble with fair-minded observers had it simply used the facts, rather than, as they soon became infamously known, “alternative facts.” 

In First WH Briefing, Spicer Upsets Media Pecking Order


The major media have warned that Donald Trump would wage a war on the First Amendment. His quick draw to call out bad reporting, boot disruptive journalists, and mock fake news were obvious signs that the freedom of the press would hang by a squib during the Trump administration.

And, lo, it came to pass Monday that all their fears were realized. Did the new President sent red-hatted mobs to smash printing presses and hijack the cable news to run non-stop ads for Trump Steaks? Even worse. In his first official White House press briefing, Sean Spicer called on reporters from the wrong side of the tracks.

The Media That Cried “Wolf!”


Aesop is said to have been an ancient Greek storyteller, perhaps a slave, whose stories of wisdom were collected and passed down through the ages. None is more famous than “The Boy That Cried Wolf.” For those too young to have been taught the fables in public school, it’s a short and simple tale: A young shepherd boy is tending a flock by himself for the first time. He is instructed by his elders to cry out should a wolf arrive and threaten the sheep. Two or three times, the boy falsely sounds the alarm and three times the elders show up in a panic. The boy laughs and thinks it is great sport. When the wolf finally does come, he screams to no avail, no one shows and the boy himself is eventually devoured.

The analogy with today’s press corps virtually writes itself. For almost a quarter of a century, the media has worked hand-in-glove with the Democratic Party to try to destroy the character of a succession of Republican presidential candidates. To steal one of their own phrases, it became so common place it was “normalized.” So, in 2016 as the late presidential campaign heated up and the charges against Trump were trotted out like clockwork, huge swaths of the nation simply yawned. The press cried, and screamed, and stamped their feet and pleaded that this time was different; this time they actually meant it.

But it wasn’t enough.

The President vs. the Media


If the mainstream media’s relationship to President Barack Obama began as a slobbering love affair, some reporters eventually realized that the relationship had always been one-sided. The press corps may have fallen in love with Obama at first sight, but the president was never really that into them. The most transparent administration in history turned out to be merciless when it came to leaks, substantive interactions were nixed in favor of superficial pressers, and the president was more than happy to bypass the press corps in favor of carefully managed social media when it suited him (as it often did). Don’t take my word for it: This 2015 piece in the Columbia Journalism Review catalogues the pattern admirably.

President Donald Trump’s relationship with the press promises to be, shall we say, different: “Mutual abuse for each other’s benefit” seems about right, though — and this is important — the press keeps getting rolled. Witness the kerfuffle this weekend over the crowd size at the inauguration: