President Trump suggested Friday he was prepared to cancel the White House’s daily press briefings unless he did them himself, and only if they occurred “every two weeks.”
In a bizarre interview taped hours after introducing the idea of scrapping the briefing altogether, Trump said he was serious about the possibility to “just don’t have them.”
“Unless I have them every two weeks and I do them myself, we don’t have them,” he told Fox News Channel’s “Justice with Judge Jeanine” in an interview slated to air in full on Saturday.
“I think it’s a good idea … you have a level of hostility that’s incredible and it’s very unfair,” Trump said.
Excerpts of the interview, taped Friday, were released just hours after a morning Twitter rant in which the erratic executive said he might cancel the White House daily press briefing and indicated the information his press office was providing to reporters wasn’t necessarily true.
“As a very active President with lots of things happening, it is not possible for my surrogates to stand at podium with perfect accuracy!…….Maybe the best thing to do would be to cancel all future “press briefings” and hand out written responses for the sake of accuracy???” he wrote in a pair of posts.
Daily White House press briefings have existed in some shape or form for more than 100 years, after first being introduced during the Woodrow Wilson administration.
At the briefing Friday, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer — whose job Trump told Fox News Channel was safe amid reports that it might not be — avoided directly discussing Trump’s threat to cancel the custom, saying only that Trump was “dismayed” with the news media.
“We see time and time again an attempt to parse every little word and make it a game of gotcha as opposed to trying to figure out what the policies are,” Spicer said.
“I think we come out here every day and try to do the best job we can communicating what the President’s done,” he added. “We work very hard to get you the most accurate and up to date information throughout the day.”