Josh Earnest: Blame Donald Trump For Mixed Messaging, Not Sean Spicer


Former Obama press secretary Josh Earnest responded to Sean Spicer‘s claim on Friday that he does not always have time to meet with President Donald Trump before heading into the briefing room.

The comment was an attempt to explain the White House’s flood of conflicting statements regarding Tuesday’s firing of FBI director James Comey. Trump undermined comments from Spicer and deputy press secretary Sarah Sanders in a Thursday interview, in which he claimed he had long planned to fire Comey.

Speaking with MSNBC’s Katy Tur, Earnest emphasized the “grave responsibility,” of ensuring the information relayed from the president to the world is accurate.

Earnest did provide something of a defense of Spicer, saying he’s “sympathetic to Sean’s plight when he says that there are days where he can’t get into the Oval Office before he does the briefing.”

Earnest made sure to lay the blame for hiccups in communication between Spicer and the president on Trump:

“That’s not Sean’s fault, that’s the fault of the President of the United States, who needs to empower his press secretary and his spokespeople to understand what he’s thinking and be able to accurately relate it to the world.”

Earnest also said that while the current White House controversy is self-inflicted, they will face serious problems “when there’s a genuine international or national security crisis” and the world tunes “into the White House briefing wondering what the president thinks about it.”

According to Earnest, if the press secretary hasn’t spoken to the president beforehand, “that’s going to be a problem.”

Watch above, via MSNBC.

[image via screengrab]

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Aidan McLaughlin is the Editor in Chief of Mediaite. Send tips via email: Ask for Signal. Follow him on Twitter: @aidnmclaughlin