Audio: CNN reporter confronts Sean Spicer over the no camera briefing policy

30 June, 2017, 00:53 | Author: Malcolm Fuller
  • TOPSHOTISRAELUSTRUMPDIPLOMACY

Acosta got into a heated battle with Spicer earlier this week as he demanded to know why the cameras in the briefing room were not on.

The New York Times reported on that effort, as well as grumbling from other members of the press corps, but The Washington Post reported this week that grumbling is all that's happened - at least so far.

Acosta also made a tweet with a hashtag asking why the cameras were off.

I asked this question of the president when he was running to win the White House, 'Can you withstand the scrutiny that comes with being president of the United States?' He didn't like that question.

A second source close to the administration confirmed the plan and said White House staffers are on board - for now.

In a statement on Tuesday, the progressive watchdog group Common Cause estimated that "there have been only five on-camera briefings by White House press officials during the entire month of June". Televised briefings had been a near-daily occurrence for decades.

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The press secretary ignored Mr Acosta's shouts. Can you tell us why you turned the cameras off?

Spicer has been one of the most visible media personalities of 2017, with his near-daily briefings at the beginning of the administration lampooned memorably on "Saturday Night Live" by Melissa McCarthy.

But then, Bette Midler's never held back on her low opinion of Donald Trump's presidency, so it's probably no surprise that the sharp-witted performer couldn't resist a dig at the US President's under-fire press secretary Sean Spicer, even if it did involve getting a little personal.

But in the larger media war, neither side has much reason to cooperate - and so we can expect this particular battle to continue for the foreseeable future. Why did you turn them off? "Before they became a TV show, these briefings were just about scheduling, setting up logistics, answering a few questions, things like that", Kennedy said.

"If this were happening in a vacuum, I could nearly understand the argument that these daily White House press briefings have become too big a deal, and that it wouldn't be a bad idea to tone it down a little bit", he said.

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