President Donald Trump rose to the defense of White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders on Friday and denigrated one media report that she would soon be leaving the administration.
Sanders is the administration’s point person for dealing with the media, which has developed an antagonistic relationship with the Trump White House.
A report by CBS, based upon unnamed sources, had said Sanders and principal deputy press secretary Raj Shah would be leaving. The report said Sanders would leave the White House by the end of the year. The CBS report then went on to portray a White House in turmoil and suggest that it was unable to fill vacancies.
Trump was asked about that report on Friday in an interview on “Fox & Friends.”
“I don’t think so. And look, at a certain point, everyone sort of leaves, you have to leave. I’m sort of just staying, I’m like a ship — just keep going,” he said, according to The Daily Caller.
“But Sarah loves this job, and she’s announced not with me. I read the same report. Somebody put it out, I think it was CBS, which she said is a false report. It’s fake news. But, at some point, I’m sure she will leave, like everybody leaves, and we’ll get somebody else. Sarah has done a fantastic job. I don’t think she’s leaving. In fact, she was very insulted that they came out and said that. So, I don’t think she’s leaving,” he said.
Trump also said that Sanders was a “very talented person.”
He added that Sanders showed more class than the media during a White House dinner when she was attacked by comedian Michelle Wolf.
“They treat her very badly,” Trump said of the media, according to The Hill.
“What they did to Sarah at the White House correspondents’ dinner … the only difference I would’ve done, I would’ve walked out,” he said.
“I thought she should have walked out, instead of sitting there,” he added, saying that she “took the high road.”
Sanders also pushed back against the report of her departure, tweeting out her mock bafflement that CBS knew her plans better than she did.
“Does @CBSNews know something I don’t about my plans and my future? I was at my daughter’s year-end Kindergarten event and they ran a story about my “plans to leave the WH” without even talking to me. I love my job and am honored to work for @POTUS,” she tweeted.
The tension that is part of many media briefings flared Friday when CNN’s Jim Acosta asked Sanders to reply to a comment Attorney General Jeff Sessions had made earlier in the day, according to Fox News.
“Can I just ask a second question, completely unrelated, on these children who are being separated from their families as they come across the border?” Acosta asked. “The attorney general earlier today said that somehow there’s a justification for this in the Bible. Where does it say in the Bible that it’s moral to take children away from their mothers?”
Sanders told Acosta it was “very biblical to enforce the law” but that she could not respond to the specific comment Sessions made because she had not seen it.
Acosta continued to press Sanders until she snapped back.
“That’s not what I said. I know it’s hard for you to understand even short sentences, I guess, but please don’t take my words out of context,” Sanders said.
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