It’s tempting to feel a bit of sympathy for the White House media machine, and for the vice president, and for the senior West Wing advisers.
Why? They are working for someone who doesn’t have a clue on how to “control a message,” or even how to conduct the business of being president of the United States.
Donald J. Trump fired FBI Director James Comey. Mike Pence, the vice president, said he acted on the advice of Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Assistant AG Rod Rosenstein. But wait! Trump then said he decided before consulting with Sessions and Rosenstein to fire Comey.
Pence also said that the FBI probe into the Russia hacking matter had “nothing to do” with Trump’s decision to fire Comey. Then, what do you know? The president contradicted the VP directly by saying, yep, Comey was spending too much time on the “Russia thing.”
White House press flack Sean Spicer has been keeping a low profile since the stuff hit the fan. Deputy flack Sarah Huckabee Sanders has been back-filling like crazy, trying to provide some semblance of sense to the chaos that has enveloped the Trump administration. She’s not succeeding, though.
In the midst of all this the president is tweeting himself silly with threats to Comey about possible recordings of conversations. He’s continued his attack on the media, threatening to suspend the daily press briefings.
And the media haven’t yet asked him directly about whether he committed a conflict of interest violation by asking Comey directly if the FBI was investigating the president. Trump had the power all along to fire the FBI boss and he shouldn’t have even thought about meddling directly in an ongoing investigation. Holy cow, man!
It’s tempting, yes, to feel sympathy for the president’s senior staff.
I’m managing to resist falling for it, though. They all ought to have known what they were getting into when they signed on.