White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer hit back against reports on the makeup of President Trump‘s National Security Council, calling them “utter nonsense.”
White House Chief Strategist Steve Bannon will be sitting in on those NSC meetings, and what really got some people to flip out was the mention of the Director of National Intelligence and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff not attending every meeting, but just the ones relevant to their areas of expertise.
A clearly frustrated Spicer criticized the “misreporting” of this and held up memos from the Bush and Obama administrations to make the point that not only is what they’re doing not too unusual, telling the press corps the only word of difference from a similar Obama administration memo is the word “also.”
Spicer said that the CIA director will be brought back into the NSC, specifically announcing that in response to a tweet from former national security advisor Susan Rice:
Chair of Joint Chiefs & DNI are after thoughts in Cabinet level principals mtgs. And CIA?? Cut out of everything? #NationalSecurityCouncil
— Susan Rice (@AmbassadorRice) January 29, 2017
Spicer did not directly address the outcry over Bannon’s inclusion in NSC meetings.
UPDATE –– 2:15 pm ET: During the Q&A with the press, Spicer did address it and said, “Steve’s not going to be in every meeting.”
Watch above, via CNN.
[image via screengrab]
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