On his first day back to the press briefing room since President Trump returned from his travels abroad, White House press secretary Sean Spicer went head to head with the mainstream media on Tuesday.
Asked about the numerous reports claiming that President Trump is ready to shake things up at the White House by replacing some of his top staffers, Spicer rejected the reports by saying the president is “very pleased” with his staff and is more “frustrated” with the spread of “fake news.” That statement immediately ignited a firestorm between mainstream reporters and Spicer.
CNN’s Jim Acosta challenged Spicer to give one example of a fake news report. Responding instantly, Spicer called out two reporters who spread lies via Twitter over the weekend . The reporters, who write for the BBC and Politico, both reported a false story claiming the president wasn’t following the translation of a NATO speech by the Italian prime minister.
Acosta replied, “reporters make mistakes.” Then a reporter from the New York Times claimed Spicer was exaggerating the meaningfulness of the tweets. “Your trip was all over the front page,” the Times reporter said. “You’re making something out of one tweet instead of the vast majority of coverage.”
“With all due respect, I think when you see instances like that get perpetrated over and over again, that is frustrating,” Spicer replied. He added, “So you get to decide what is big and what is not.” He continued, “a lot of things have been pushed out based on unnamed unaccountable sources, and that is very troubling.”
After the exchange was complete, Spicer ended the briefing by walking away from the podium. Reporters called out his name asking him to stay. Spicer rejected their calls.
You can watch the heated exchange below:
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