The first general press conference since the weekend started ninety minutes late, lasted thirty minutes short, and brought forth pointed questions to Sarah Huckabee-Sanders which left her squirming for room. The second question of the session challenged Trump’s tweet regarding the FBI spending too much time investigating collusion with Russia and too little time investigating the Parkland Florida shooter, the spokesperson was essentially asked: “Does the president really believe there to be a nexus?”
Huckabee-Sanders doubled-down on the tweet, stating that, indeed: “Yes.” Trump truly does believe that with respect to the Trump campaign colluding with Russia, such “collusion” remains a “hoax” and the FBI needs to get off the issue and focus on more critical evidence.
This is extraordinary. The White House press secretary presumes to prioritize for the FBI and, in doing so, tells the FBI to lay off its investigation of the White House, lest more high school children die.
If it does not appear to sound “weird” or “wrong,” it is only because this is the Trump administration. The idea that any other administration throughout history, would stand at the press podium and tell the FBI that it bears partial responsibility for the deaths of children because the FBI will not drop an investigation into the White House’s possible criminal behavior is outside the bounds of what we deem conceivable. Only because this is the Trump administration does this not sound so outrageous as to require immediate removal from office.
Moreover, Huckabee-Sanders clearly could not have been more defensive regarding why Trump cannot be tough on Russia. She called President Trump “far tougher” than President Obama on Russia, but then could only cite the increases in military spending coming under Trump. But, “military spending” only becomes adversarial when one is willing to use the military against a nation, and Trump has shown no inclination to take even mild action against Russia. Huckabee-Sanders ignored the fact that President Obama imposed significant sanctions upon Russia himself, kicked out diplomats, took compounds, and enforced the sanctions congress levied. Once again, we see a White House more comfortable attacking other Americans than saying anything that could be construed against Russia. Trump would rather attack a former American president than the president that attacked America.
The one positive that truth-seekers can take from the press availability today is that the White House is clearly on the defensive, and is thus aware of the depth of trouble around them. It is hard to believe that the “lateness” of the press conference and the short duration indicates anything but fear of the questions laying about.