White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer on Wednesday short-circuited the White House press corps and took questions from a group of conservative journalists via Skype.
As promised, Spicer debuted what the White House is calling “Skype seats,” which circumvents the independent White House Correspondents’ Association and allows the press secretary to take questions directly from hand-picked sources.
The third question from the “Skype seats” on Wednesday came from conservative radio host Lars Larson, who referred to the press secretary as “Commander Spicer.”
“It’s a pleasure,” Larson declared. “Thank you for your service to America.”
The radio host began his question by complaining that the federal government “owns two-thirds of a billion acres of America.”
“I don’t think the founders ever envisioned it that way,” Larson said. “Does President Trump want to start returning the people’s land to the people? And in the meantime… can he tell the Forest Service to start logging our forest aggressively again to provide jobs for Americans, wealth for the treasury and not spend $3.5 billion a year fighting forest fires.”
According to the press secretary, the U.S. had “counted too much on foreign sources of energy.”
Spicer promised that the Trump administration would “utilize the resources that we have that the federal government owns.”
A subsequent question from the “Skype seats” pressed Spicer about when the Trump administration would reduce regulations on mining and burning coal.
“The president has clearly stated that clean coal is an issue that’s so important to our energy as well as job creation,” Spicer replied. “So whether Kentucky, West Virginia or Pennsylvania or so many other places that rely on coal, bringing clean coal back is good for independence, our economy and job creation.”
Watch the video below from CNN, broadcast Feb. 1, 2017.