The White House press corps erupted in laughter when White House press secretary Sean Spicer admitted that President Donald Trump doesn’t really believe that job reports from the Labor Department are fake.
The Labor Department on Friday released a strong jobs report showing the US economy added 235,000 jobs in February. During his White House press briefing later in the day, Spicer was asked about Trump’s previous claims that positive job reports under the Obama administration were “phony or totally fiction.”
“I talked to the president prior to this, and he said to quote them very clearly. They may have been phony in the past, but it’s very real now,” Spicer replied, prompting laughter from reporters in the room.
“I know it was delivered as a laugh line from Sean and got laughter in the room from reporters — I’m not so sure all of America will laugh at that,” CNN political director David Chalian said afterward.
“It is an admission of blatant hypocrisy,” he continued. “I mean, it’s like the most traditional politician thing you could do — which is not Donald Trump’s brand necessarily — to say that when it is not in my favor I’m going to say this, and when it is in my favor, I’m going to say that. That is the thing about politicians most people in the country don’t like. So I don’t know it is necessarily a joke. It is a total admission of blatant hypocrisy.”
“Spicer’s breezy dismissal of the question was a tacit admission that Trump had indeed lied when he trashed good employment news during the administration of his predecessor Barack Obama,” Jon Levine wrote at Mediaite. “If the fourth estate treats future administration falsehoods as a joke, they will become the fake news which they have so often been accused.”
Given the reaction on Twitter, many Americans were in fact not laughing:
glad everyone just laughs off trump being a pathological liar https://t.co/eKqLvkTKZH
— Brian Tashman (@briantashman) March 10, 2017
He also lets us know when job numbers are real and when he lies about them. So let's just laugh it off and continue to laugh at trump's lies https://t.co/PiXmFb6J0G
— MJiAmTheResistance (@mjcastro360) March 10, 2017
.@PressSec quotes Trump on jobs report: "They may have been phony in the past but they are very real now." Laughs. Just a joke. Deplorable.
— David Corn (@DavidCornDC) March 10, 2017
@voxdotcom I'm outraged, offended, saddened and more hopeless- are all the reports in on the joke? Making a mockery of the American public
— Zoe Hess (@ZoeHess13) March 10, 2017
— Michael J Lando (@MJL_Uncensored) March 10, 2017
@MSNBC Real funny–everyone accepting that our President is a serial liar & does so when it fits his own view of alt-reality. Ha-Ha-Ha.
— Hari Bhajan Khalsa (@HariBK) March 10, 2017
@MSNBC I don't know what is more appalling, him saying it or the press all laughing at that absurdity.
— Nate Mcg (@gamer_politics) March 10, 2017
Spicer quoting Trump on jobs report: "It may have been phony then but it's real now!" Everyone laughs. So Trump's lying is funny now?!
— Don Alt Rump (@Subject2DVision) March 10, 2017
Sean Spicer jokes jobs numbers "may have been phony" before but are real now. Press laughs. Lying is now embedded. https://t.co/JXpxDKBJE1
— glitterbitch shauna (@goldengateblond) March 10, 2017
Trump just confirmed he was undermining confidence in government data for purely cynical purposes: https://t.co/TFd5RilFeA
— Daniel Dale (@ddale8) March 10, 2017
There’s no respite from Trump’s vindictiveness and foolishness
As we know, even in the midst of a national emergency, Donald Trump could find time and bandwidth to continue his retribution campaign.
He dismissed Michael Atkinson, the inspector general for the intelligence agencies, for doing “a terrible job,” satisfying his own thirst for vengeance for anyone who actually adhered to law and practice over blind loyalty to Trump himself. Indeed, asked about it the next day, Trump underscored his action by saying, Atkinson “was no Trump supporter, that I can tell you.”
It was an act that we once would have labeled corruption, by Democrats and Republicans – that is using the office for personal purposes – if Congress and too many Americans had not since become inured by so many like instances.
This is how Taiwan and South Korea bucked the global lockdown trend
As the coronavirus pandemic sparks global lockdowns, life has continued comparatively unhindered in places like Taiwan, South Korea and Hong Kong after their governments and citizens took decisive early action against the unfolding crisis.
At first glance Taiwan looks like an ideal candidate for the coronavirus. The island of 23 million lies just 180 kilometres (110 miles) off mainland China.
Yet nearly 100 days in, Taiwan has just 376 confirmed cases and five fatalities while restaurants, bars, schools, universities and offices remain open.
The government of President Tsai Ing-wen, whose deputy is an epidemiologist, made tough decisions while the crisis was nascent to stave off the kind of pain now convulsing much of the rest of the world.
Republican ex-lawmaker with coronavirus scolds Wisconsin GOP for forcing voters to risk their health
On CNN Tuesday, former Rep. Charlie Dent (R-PA), who is himself dealing with a bout of COVID-19, chastised the Wisconsin GOP for doing everything in their power to block the state elections from being moved — and forcing many voters to stand in line and risk exposure to the virus to cast their ballot.
"I have to tell you, here in Pennsylvania we have a Democratic governor and Republican legislature," Dent told host Don Lemon. "They postponed the election here from April 28 until June 2. Without any controversy. Everybody agreed it was the right thing to do and they moved on. I'm surprised Wisconsin took this risk, knowing they don't have to."