Two of President Donald Trump’s top advisors went to Capitol Hill in hopes of reassuring uneasy Republican lawmakers about their role in the government — but the visits reportedly didn’t go so well.
Kellyanne Conway, one of Trump’s senior advisors, and Boris Epshteyn, who’s in charge of the surrogate team, met Monday morning with about 100 communications staffers for GOP senators, reported Politico.
The Trump administration claims the meetings ended with an ovation for Conway, but three sources told the website a very different story.
Conway boasted about the successful introduction of Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch last week, but the congressional staffers grilled her on the record number of calls their bosses had received about education secretary nominee Betsy DeVos.
“We said it would be nice to get some cover on this because we’re taking the heat on our own,” a communications director for one GOP senator told Politico. “But there was radio silence.”
In another meeting, congressional staffers asked Epshteyn why lawmakers hadn’t been consulted on the details of Trump’s proposed immigration ban, but the administration official abruptly left after five minutes without taking any questions.
“(We were) trying to figure out who this guy is, and why he’s speaking for them,” a source told the website, adding that congressional aides had been mocking Epshteyn since the aborted meeting.
Conway abruptly ended another meeting, where she dismissed the concerns of voters about DeVos, after a congressional staffer asked her about a “Saturday Night Live” sketch ridiculing White House press secretary Sean Spicer.
The staffer asked Conway if she’d laughed at the sketch, the website reported, but a source said her face “turned to stone.”
A senior White House official told Politico that Conway did not comment on the SNL sketch and insisted that her face did not turn to stone.
“They definitely did not find it funny,” the source said. “And then they walked out.”