WH Press Slam Protest Opposition, Blame Trump for Lack of Non-NFL Coverage

Monday’s White House Press Briefing was, once again, insufferable thanks to the questions from the throngs of liberal reports on scene, with this event dominated by defending NFL protesters and blaming Trump for preventing the news media from covering anything else.

ABC’s Cecilia Vega first asked about whether or not Trump “believe[s] that there are very fine people who kneeled yesterday or watching those games or are they all SOBs” to which Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders shot back that Vega was “trying to conflate different things.”

Vega followed up with this doozy: 

I’ll follow up on that there. The President said that kneeling has nothing to do with race. Colin Kaepernick took a kneel, took to his knees in these games, many of these games, specifically because he said black people in this country were not being treated fairly by police. How is that not an issue of race? 

CBS News White House correspondent Margaret Brennan followed with the first of many questions that seemed to place the blame on the lack of media attention for other topics on Trump (as opposed to the press themselves):

Sarah, from this podium you've often expressed frustration on the media and not focused on what the agenda that President has and substantive issues and things he wants to get done, tax reform, et cetera. When did the President decide at this rally that he was going to spend so much time talking about the flag itself and doesn't that distract from the things he's trying to accomplish whether it's tax reform, health care or the efforts in Puerto Rico or the showdown with North Korea? 

Huckabee Sanders responded that she doesn’t “think that talking about the American flag is a distraction for the President of the United States” and it’s something that “every American can get behind, support and celebrate national pride in our country and supporting those that have fought and died to defend it from all different backgrounds.”

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Fox News Radio correspondent John Decker asked a similar version of that later in the briefing, but he came back with this asinine line of thinking, suggesting that Trump’s Twitter feed is the be-all, end-all for what the media covers:

DECKER: You see, Sarah, how it's taken up so much oxygen, right? When the President speaks about that particular issue you see how the majority of questions that have been asked of you so far today have been about this particular issue?

HUCKABEE SANDERS: That's determined by you guys. 

DECKER: He has a tremendous amount of power when he tweets and we report on it and so when he tweets something, it does take away from his legislative agenda, would you not agree? 

HUCKABEE SANDERS: No, I don't because I think it's important for our President to show patriotism, to be a lead or this issue and he has.

On this issue, it’s a pathetic image the media are painting of themselves. Instead of being intrepid, rugged individuals following what they believe the public has a right to know about, the White House press corps offered a picture in which they have a gun to their heads and are victim to only what the President tweets.

The media claim to be looking out for the little guy, but deciding what one person tweets or doesn’t tweet certainly indicates that their work for an audience of one instead of millions. And this doesn’t even begin to the media’s credibility issues when it comes to liberal bias.

Back to the briefing, NBC News chief White House correspondent Hallie Jackson took things even further, wondering if the President has “a problem with the First Amendment.” 

“Not at all. The President is simply stating that pride in our country is a good thing. It's something that we should all celebrate and something that should bring us together and not divide us and standing up for the national anthem is a symbol of that,” Huckabee Sanders responded.

To cap off this briefing, further cementing the media’s opposition to the White House, CNN senior White House correspondent Jim Acosta took a swipe at both NASCAR and the President:

Can I follow-up on what Halle was asking? Why is it that the President over the weekend is going after or seeming to go after African-American athletes and then, this morning, he's putting out a tweet praising NASCAR, which obviously is geared toward a different demographic, and the way they stand in respect in honor of the flag. Is he trying to wage something of a culture war?

Here’s the relevant transcript from September 25's White House Press Briefing:

White House Press Briefing
September 25, 2017
2:22 p.m. Eastern

CECILIA VEGA: Does the President believe that there are very fine people who kneeled yesterday or watching those games or are they all SOBs? 

SARAH HUCKABEE SANDERS: I think you're trying to conflate different things here. Look, we certainly respect the rights people have, but we always need to focus. Again, this isn't the President being against something which is what everyone wants to draw. This is about the President being for something. This is the President being for respecting our country through symbols like the American flag, like the National Anthem and the hundreds of thousands that actually stand versus the few hundred that may have knelt. 

VEGA: I’ll follow up on that there. The President said that kneeling has nothing to do with race. Colin Kaepernick took a kneel, took to his knees in these games, many of these games, specifically because he said black people in this country were not being treated fairly by police. How is that not an issue of race? 

HUCKABEE SANDERS: I think that the focus has long since changed and certainly the message and what a lot has been communicated over these last several weeks through this process and through these protests by these players. 

MARGARET BRENNAN: Sarah, from this podium you've often expressed frustration on the media and not focused on what the agenda that President has and substantive issues and things he wants to get done, tax reform, et cetera. When did the President decide at this rally that he was going to spend so much time talking about the flag itself and doesn't that distract from the things he's trying to accomplish whether it's tax reform, health care or the efforts in Puerto Rico or the showdown with North Korea? 

HUCKABEE SANDERS: Look, I certainly don’t think that talking about the American flag is a distraction for the President of the United States. Again, this should be something that every American can get behind, support and celebrate national pride in our country and supporting those that have fought and died to defend it from all different backgrounds, and so I think again, that that certainly should be a priority of the President but you act like that's all he did over the weekend. We also did a lot of other things and we're continuing to push forward on tax reform, continuing to push forward on health care, continuing to push forward on the safety and security of the border and our country. 

(....)

JOHN DECKER: This is a significant week, a pivotal week for the President, for Republicans. It's an opportunity, some are saying, the last best chance for repealing and replacing ObamaCare, and, yet, much of yesterday, the beginning part of yesterday was focused as far as the President was concerned, on the NFL, on players who take a knee. Can you explain how that's helpful to that effort of repealing and replacing ObamaCare when the President spends so much time on that other issue, the issue involving sports? 

HUCKABEE SANDERS: It really doesn't take out that long to type out 140 characters and this President is very capable of doing more than capable of doing more than one thing at a time and more than one thing in a day. John Gizzi?

DECKER: You see, Sarah, how it's taken up so much oxygen, right? When the President speaks about that particular issue you see how the majority of questions that have been asked of you so far today have been about this particular issue?

HUCKABEE SANDERS: That's determined by you guys. 

DECKER: He has a tremendous amount of power when he tweets and we report on it and so when he tweets something, it does take away from his legislative agenda, would you not agree? 

HUCKABEE SANDERS: No, I don't because I think it's important for our President to show patriotism, to be a lead or this issue and he has.

(....)

HALLIE JACKSON: I think the question has been going around here today, you talk about the President wanting to defend the flag. You know the oath of office was to defend the Constitution. So does the president have a problem with the First Amendment? 

HUCKABEE SANDERS: Not at all. The President is simply stating that pride in our country is a good thing. It's something that we should all celebrate and something that should bring us together and not divide us and standing up for the national anthem is a symbol of that. Jim? 

JIM ACOSTA: Can I follow-up on what Halle was asking? Why is it that the President over the weekend is going after or seeming to go after African-American athletes and then, this morning, he's putting out a tweet praising NASCAR, which obviously is geared toward a different demographic, and the way they stand in respect in honor of the flag. Is he trying to wage something of a culture war? 

HUCKABEE SANDERS: Not at all. The President is not talking about race. The President is talking about pride in our country. What you saw yesterday were players and fans of all races joining together as Americans to honor our service members. That's what the President is talking about. That's what his focus is on.

NBDaily Conservatives & Republicans Liberals & Democrats Sports ABC CBS Fox News Channel CNN Jim Acosta White House Press Briefing NFL Cecilia Vega Hallie Jackson Margaret Brennan Sarah Huckabee Sanders Donald Trump
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