Poor Harris Faulkner! Neither her Republican nor Democratic guest could find a way to make Donald Trump look good with the sudden departure of Anthony Scaramucci. So Faulkner went to the Fox fallback position: take a jab at President Barack Obama.
Right in the middle of what Faulkner and Fox were framing as a “big win” coming up for Trump on tax reform, the news broke that Scaramucci was out of his job as White House communications director after only 10 days. As the New York Times noted, Scaramucci’s hiring “convulsed an already chaotic White House and led to the departures of Sean Spicer, the former press secretary, and Reince Priebus, the president’s first chief of staff.” And, of course, there was that shocking rant in The New Yorker.
Faulkner’s Democratic guest, Simon Rosenberg, laughed. Faulkner was visibly annoyed.
Rosenberg went on to call Scaramucci’s rant “arguably the most disgusting things ever said on the record by any spokesperson of any White House in the modern era of American politics.” But Rosenberg also said that the installation of Trump’s new chief of staff today, General John Kelly was “a step in the right direction” and “an incredible opportunity to help Donald Trump become a dignified, thoughtful leader.”
Faulkner turned to her Republican guest, Mercedes Schlapp, who had worked in the George W. Bush White House to “kind of pick your brain” about “how things go in a White House” when someone new in an important position comes in.
Schlapp replied, “Well, during my time we didn’t have these many personnel changes.”
Rosenberg laughed again.
“OK, fair enough,” Faulkner said. But she sounded annoyed.
Schlapp added that Bush’s chief of staff, Andy Card, taught, “It is all about humility” and “If you get too out of hand or too colorful or feel that you’re too important, then there’s no room for you in that White House.” She added pointedly, “And I think that is the right approach in managing the west wing.”
So Faulkner went to her fallback position – it’s just like Obama!
FAULKNER: Sometimes you kind of lose the presence of your party if you bring in too many of your friends. And actually, you could make that very criticism of President Obama because he brought in a lot of friends from Chicago with him in the very beginning.
Nobody seemed really on board with that line, either, probably because Obama never had any kind of similar chaos.
So after Rosenberg pointed out that almost nobody in authority at the White House knows “their way around Congress,” and that if Trump doesn’t get more who do it will still be “a very bumpy ride” for the administration, Faulkner moved on. Before Trump gets down to bigger issues, she asked Schlapp, “So is now kind of the right time to change some of your messengers?”
Watch Faulkner give spin her best effort below, from the July 31, 2017 America’s News HQ.
NOTE TO MASSES
Time to call all talk radio with this script.
“Is Fox “News” Channel in collusion with the Trump Administration?"
“Thank you for taking my call. I hope Robert Mueller is looking into this right. If I was him I would look into Fox News Channel, the senior executives and hosts involved in this alleged attempt to cover Trump’s involvement with Russia.”