While it has long been reported that Donald Trump was not happy with the job that Fox News ex-president and Sean Hannity pal Bill Shine was doing at the White House, Fox correspondent John Roberts insisted that Shine abruptly resigned Friday in order to spend more time with his family.
The New York Times reported in January that things were not going well between Shine and Trump. Despite telling people he would accompany Trump to Hanoi for the summit with North Korea’s Kim Jong-un, Shine stayed behind. Politico reported that not long after Shine was hired, Trump "wound up grousing in private that Shine ... hadn’t managed to improve Trump’s image or his fraught relationship with the White House press corps."
Meanwhile, Shine’s new job at the re-election campaign is seen as a face-saver, reported the Times. Politico noted that Shine is expected to "take on something less than a senior leadership role in the campaign."
Yet Roberts, who joined Fox in 2011 and thus worked under Shine for about seven years, either knew none of that or else deliberately painted a false picture for Fox viewers when he reported on Shine’s resignation. By the way, Robert is not some junior correspondent but Fox’s chief White House correspondent.
ROBERTS: While they didn’t give a reason in all of the statements that were released this morning about why he’s leaving, I mean, I can tell you through conversations that I have had with him that he probably wouldn’t mind sharing, that he’s not had a whole lot of time to be with his family. His family did not move with him here to Washington, D.C. So since last June, when he joined the White House, he’s been here by himself – and try to get back to see family, and very often the business of the nation encroaches on your personal life and a lot of times he’s had to either win his way back here very quickly or not been able to leave so that likely factored into his departure somewhat as well.
Not noted? Shine went to Hawaii with his wife during the government shutdown.
Roberts moved on to suggest that the secondary reason Shine left was out of a selfless desire not to be a distraction after bombshell New Yorker article reminded everyone he was collecting money from both Fox and U.S. taxpayers.
ROBERTS: While family concerns were likely the main reasons for Shine’s departure, it was also an article in The New Yorker magazine this week that drew a close connection between the programming side of Fox News and the White House. And one of the things that was highlighted in that article was that Bill Shine was still being paid by Fox as part of his severance agreement while working at the White House. Now, that information was already well known but it’s possible in the context of the broader article, that was becoming a little bit of a distraction here at the White House and one thing that Bill Shine did not want to do was be a distraction to this White House.
Again, though, I firmly believe that family concerns were at the root of all of this.
Watch Roberts spin Shine’s departure below, from the March 8, 2019 Outnumbered Overtime.
Spend more time with family? Really? That is the oldest trope for anyone fired from his job.