The White House was caught off guard and by surprise Tuesday when the official North Korean state news agency announced that talks scheduled for next month between President Donald Trump and Kim Jong-un would be canceled if the U.S. did not pull out of military exercises with South Korea.
— Andrea Mitchell (@mitchellreports) May 15, 2018
President Trump for months has been praising the North Korean dictator after he proposed a face-to-face meeting with the U.S. president. Not only has Trump been praising him, he literally acted as Kim’s Minister of Propaganda, tweeting out remarks the 34-year old Supreme Leader of North Korea had made.
But Tuesday’s announcement threw the White House for a loop.
Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders issued a quick statement in response.
“We are aware of the South Korean media report,” Huckabee Sanders said. “The United States will look at what North Korea has said independently, and continue to coordinate closely with our allies.”
The problem, as CNN Chief National Security Correspondent Jim Sciutto and others noted, is that the report came from North Korea, not South Korea.
The Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) is the official state media outlet for North Korea. Yonhap is South Korea’s news agency.
In fact, this is not a “South Korean media report”. Statement came from North Korean state media, KCNA, which speaks for Pyongyang. https://t.co/c0ThtZpFqA
— Jim Sciutto (@jimsciutto) May 15, 2018
Later, an English language version was released by KCNA.
It reads, in part, that South Korea and the U.S. are “reacting to all the peace-loving efforts and good intentions which DPRK has shown with rude and wicked provocation.”
The official English report from KCNA is out: pic.twitter.com/4Qyq9Zvsa6
— Martyn Williams (@martyn_williams) May 15, 2018
Sciutto also makes this observation:
— Jim Sciutto (@jimsciutto) May 15, 2018
As one political writer noted, Kim is playing Trump “like a fiddle.”
North Korea’s Kim Jong Un is playing Donald Trump like a fiddle.
— Leah McElrath (@leahmcelrath) May 15, 2018
Trump has repeatedly signaled that he is jonesing for a deal with North Korea, and for that to happen, the summit with Kim Jong-un has to happen. That gives Kim an opportunity to hold the summit at risk for leverage. https://t.co/e312jgt244
— Colin Kahl (@ColinKahl) May 15, 2018
Kim seeks to use the leverage Trump has given him. Somewhere Bolton is smiling. https://t.co/XTBPUyjtTC
— Jon B. "Globalist" Wolfsthal (@JBWolfsthal) May 15, 2018
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Internet Laughs Out Loud After Trump Press Secretary Stephanie Grisham Says ‘Let’s Be Honest’
The credibility gap that has plagued official spokespeople for Donald Trump resulted in hilarious responses after she began her latest defense of the president with, “Let’s be honest.”
It started when Washington Post reporter David Nakamura noted an unfortunate young man who was stuck sitting next to Trump as the commander-in-chief issued a lie-filled rant about the “overthrow of government” in America.
This young man was invited to a White House roundtable on school choice but he had to sit there as Trump denounced the FBI’s Russia investigation as an attempted “overthrow of government”–even though IG called probe legitimate and not political. pic.twitter.com/WdaYLudGnx
— David Nakamura (@DavidNakamura) December 9, 2019
Grisham, who has yet to deliver a daily White House press briefing, attempted to blame the press for Trump’s rant.
Let’s be honest: the press are invited into roundtables & events on specific topics almost every day – and our guests have to “sit there” as they shout questions on subjects completely unrelated to the event at hand. As always, the hypocrisy here is stark. https://t.co/S7JxDsgf3u
— Stephanie Grisham (@PressSec) December 9, 2019
Grisham was brutally mocked for making such a statement with her credibility issues.
Former Bill Clinton press secretary Joe Lockhart blasted Grisham in a reply.
“Let’s be a little more honest. Most Presidents don’t talk about attempts to overthrow the government and denounce his own FBI in front of anyone,” Lockhart noted. “No excuse for your guy. Sorry that young man had to hear it.”
Here’s some more of what people were saying:
No one thinks you’re ever honest.
— Cheri Jacobus (@CheriJacobus) December 9, 2019
Somewhere in the world it’s happy hour. 🍸
— savvytruffle (@savvytruffle) December 9, 2019
Maybe you could hold actual daily briefings. Isn’t that why we pay you?
— Pam📢🆘 (@PamManos) December 9, 2019
“Let’s be honest” pic.twitter.com/gtM2jwiYDw
— CHIDI®️ (@ChidiNwatu) December 9, 2019
Let’s be honest: you don’t work & yet we pay you a six figure salary.
As always, the grifting in this administration is stark.
— kevin (@KevINthe406) December 9, 2019
Maybe put down the bottle and have a press conference then?
— thesingleplayerguy (@singleplayerguy) December 9, 2019
When’s your next @WhiteHouse presser, Steph?
— Elizabeth Thorp (@ElizabethEThorp) December 9, 2019
Yes, let’s be honest! Maybe if you actually did your damn job and held press briefings, instead of running to your safe place at Fox “News”, then these questions wouldn’t be yelled out at times like this. https://t.co/8D3Si5jwRY
— Jamie Holly (@JamieHolly) December 9, 2019
Are you fucking kidding, @PressSec? The reason journalists have to shout questions about any and all topics is because you refuse to hold ANY press conferences, in a massive break from decades of tradition. You’re a utter joke, doing nothing but spouting Soviet-style propaganda. https://t.co/U4e1DM7yNA
— Mitchesque McConnell (@MitchMcConell) December 9, 2019
‘Busy Testifying’: Twitter Wonders Why So Many Trump Administration Officials Are MIA at His Joint Press Conference
Support for President Donald Trump is dwindling, but no where was it more evident Wednesday than during his joint press conference with the President of Italy.
As ABC News Chief White House Correspondent Jonathan Karl noted, in the audience the “seats usually occupied by senior White House or staff” were “empty,” while the Italian side was full.
This is unusual — As President Trump holds his joint press conference with the Italian President, several of the seats usually occupied by senior White House or staff are empty. Italian side is full. pic.twitter.com/nYJ8JHHK5k
— Jonathan Karl (@jonkarl) October 16, 2019
Many across social media wondered where Trump’s top-level associates were, especially Ivanka and Jared, among others.
Take a look at some of the responses:
Hiding from subpoenas
— Jefferson (@jeffersonalle) October 16, 2019
— Susan Foster (@independent603) October 16, 2019
Too busy shredding. https://t.co/SkIgpIhZ94
— Schooley (@Rschooley) October 16, 2019
Wow. His own staff is embarrassed to be there. No Javanka? People hiding now. https://t.co/PAJ7sq8LhB
— @HuckFinnPeru (@paul_sarria) October 16, 2019
They are all consulting lawyers- obvs https://t.co/YXMaxmvheA
— jim manley (@jamespmanley) October 16, 2019
They are cleaning out their desks https://t.co/TmtwTKia7O
— Debra Richmond (@DebraRichmond18) October 16, 2019
Because they are all speaking with their attorneys in hopes of staying out of jail. https://t.co/WjyiAJ8Chj
— Poppy (@McnaughtJ) October 16, 2019
There in their offices writing up their resignations https://t.co/ujXuVd9byD
— Political Polls (@PoIiticalPolls) October 16, 2019
They are all out interviewing attorneys. https://t.co/dWsVinflyV
— Yes yes yes (@No_No_No_Yes) October 16, 2019
If he is shooting for isolationism….
he is succeeding on a grand scale https://t.co/penO3XO0ej
— Tammie 🕊 (@tlccourville) October 16, 2019
On the phone with their lawyers. https://t.co/pX3lApnpyW
— Whit Stillman (@WhitStillman) October 16, 2019
Trump’s Disastrous Kanye Visit Was Jared Kushner’s Fault – and Left WH Aides ‘Hugely Embarrassed’
New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman told CNN on Friday that Kanye’s Oval Office meeting with Donald Trump did not go over well with White House staff, who were left feeling “hugely embarrassed” for the “speechless and confused” president.
“This was very much a Jared Kushner show,” said Haberman. “Kushner brought Kanye West in to talk about prison reform and job opportunities for inmates after they get out of prison and then this lunch was put on the president’s calendar.”
“You can see Jared Kushner there looking very happy, his wife Ivanka Trump not looking quite as happy,” Haberman added. “That represented the split that you saw within the White House.”
“I heard from other West Wing aides who were hugely embarrassed that that had happened, thought that was not a good look, that this is not a rock concert,” she said.
“The main sentiment I have heard,” Haberman said, “is why have we taken what was a pretty good week for the president with Kavanaugh, which is something that Republican candidates heading into the midterms would probably rather be talking about, and why are we now doing ‘Kanye Week’?”
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