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Poor Priebus: After 'Face the Nation,' he had no credibility left

White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus' Sunday appearance on "Face the Nation."

Happy Presidents Day.

Watching the opening interview of Sunday’s edition of CBS News’ “Face the Nation,” it was almost impossible not to feel a little sorry for White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus. Of course, no one forced Priebus to sign up as Trump’s right-hand man. And he surely understood that the gig would require him to sink even deeper into bull slinging than had his previous gig as chair of the Republican National Committee. And certainly, anyone in a top White House position is required to parrot the president’s line.

But parroting the line of Donald Trump means committing yourself to lying constantly. And on this particular Sunday it required poor Priebus to lie about alleged lies about his lying boss. So, as I said, I almost felt sorry for him.

Here’s the thing. President Trump has long since taken to calling others liars (remember “Lyin’ Ted” Cruz), but that’s only the tip of the iceberg because ...

Trump was so upset about the recent New York Times piece suggesting a huge amount of pre-election contact between Trump hirelings and Russian intelligence agents — which obviously reinforced the narrative that Russians helped engineer Trump’s win — that Trump decided to escalate his press bashing and state (or, more precisely, to tweet) that the “fake news media” is not so much his enemy as it is “the enemy of the American People!”

“Face the Nation” moderator John Dickerson kicked off Sunday’s interview by quoting that tweet and specifically asking poor Priebus whether the American people are supposed to take that “enemy of the American People” silliness seriously.

So, before he had a chance to talk about anything else, poor Priebus had to choose between conserving whatever credibility he had when he walked into the studio, and saving his job. He chose the latter.

PRIEBUS:  I think you should take [the "enemy of the people" silliness] seriously.

I think that the problem we have got is that we are talking about bogus stories like the one in The New York Times that we have had constant contact with Russian officials. The next day, The Wall Street Journal had a story that the intel community was not giving the president a full intelligence briefing, both stories grossly inaccurate, overstated, overblown.

And it is total garbage. So we spend, you know, 48 hours on bogus stories, and the American people suffer. So I do think it is a problem. And I think that the media needs to, in some cases, not every case, John, but, in some cases, really needs to get its act together.

DICKERSON: The enemy?

PRIEBUS: Well, if you’re not — if the theory is, is that the press is supposed to be a free forum of information to — to speak to the American people, I think it ought to be accurate.

And I think that we have gotten to a place, John, where the media is willing to run with unnamed sources, apparently false leaked documents, to create stories. I mean, we deal with one after the next.

I think that the media should stop with this unnamed source stuff, put names on a piece of paper and print it. If people aren’t willing to put their name next to a quote, then the quote shouldn’t be listed, period.

Call me an old softie, but I had a little pity for Priebus. Below I’ll take the liberty of constructing a better answer that might have gotten him through with a shred of dignity. But first, three problems with what did come not only out of his mouth but also onto videotape for the rest of time.

  1. You can have an argument about whether unnamed sources should ever be quoted. The practice has a long history. And papers like the New York Times and Wall Street Journal have tough policies about when such quotes can be used. It goes through a lot of vetting in the newsroom. Major papers have reasonable standards that have to do with how many sources are confirming the information, how reliable the sources are considered to be, and how certain the reporter and editor are that this is an important story that cannot be published without agreeing to anonymity for one or more of the sources.
  2. I would bet a couple of non-vital organs that poor Priebus has cut many a deal with journalists to quote him anonymously. And I would bet you a couple of fingers and toes that poor Priebus has never complained about blind quotes when they were damaging to Democrats.
  3. And this is the beaut: Poor Priebus works for Donald Trump, who lies constantly, instinctively, reflexively, both on and off the record, with what the law would call “reckless disregard for the truth,” and about matters both important and unimportant. He lies about stupid things like whether his inauguration crowd was the biggest ever, lies that are easily disproven, and even after the lies have been reliably proven, he pretty much never retracts them. Sometimes he stops telling them, and sometimes he keeps telling them after they’ve been proven false, but he pretty much never takes responsibility for telling a lie and I can’t recall very many that he has even retracted.

I’ve managed to make a living in the scribbler’s game for 40-some years. I’ve seldom relied on anonymous quotes and when I did it was both important and necessary and every precaution was taken. I’ve also gotten a few things factually wrong, and I know the pain of having to agree to a correction, but I also know – in a way that Mr. Trump obviously doesn’t – how important it is to correct the record when you say or write something that is false. So the real reason I feel so bad for Priebus is that whatever part of a person’s soul tells him that it’s important to tell the truth, he has had to have it removed.

Oh, and lastly, even if poor Priebus is right and the Times and the Journal got taken in by lying sources, Priebus sold whatever was left of his honor and dignity in this case not to set the record straight, not to make the reasonable argument that you have to be careful about believing information that comes from unnamed sources, but because only to defend his boss’ ridiculous hyperbole that hard-working reporters were “enemies of the American People.”

So, as promised above, here’s my suggestion of a better answer poor that Priebus could’ve used:

“Enemy of the People? Of course not. That’s a bit of hyperbole, but if you put up with the amount of negative press that President Trump does, you might get pretty annoyed too. Still, those stories were wrong and you might notice that they relied very heavily on unnamed sources. I recommend that people bear that in mind when assessing the veracity of statements from people who aren’t willing to put their names to them.”

Of course, who knows what consequences a Trump subordinate might face for acknowledging that the boss occasionally engages in a bit of hyperbole.

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Comments (37)

".....the boss occasionally

".....the boss occasionally engages in a bit of hyperbole."

A "bit"?

Why they don't want to be named

Craig Deare, who was serving as the National Security Council's senior director for Western Hemisphere Affairs, was fired for making statements about Donald Trump, the man who appointed him. He wasn't talking to the press. His remarks were made at a private, off-the-record roundtable hosted by the Woodrow Wilson Center for a small group of scholars. This hardly rises to the level of snitching to the press, and yet he lost his job.
Anonymous sources are troubling. However, without Deep Throat, Nixon would have finished out his term.

Thank you Eric...

Your 2nd last paragraph, where you touch on a sensible response which eludes the Kellyanne Conways of the Trump cabal, would do wonders for Trump and his image, if his soldiers would/could only take a chance on maybe not getting fired.

Todays Republicans

Todays Republicans don't have that part of the soul* or, if they do, it is vestigial; they always have to learn mannerisms that allow folks to easily assume this sort of humanity exists in them.

Trump, of course, demands the less stellar features of the species from Republicans be on display, and since their political survival often depends on hiding them, we have the theme of his new reality show, Fake Executive Branch, but I'm open to other names for it.

*"So the real reason I feel so bad for Priebus is that whatever part of a person’s soul tells him that it’s important to tell the truth, he has had to have it removed."

No Pity

At this point, I cannot feel any pity for Mr. Priebus. It could well be that he had no idea what he would be signing on for when he took the job. That was then: by now, he has had plenty of time to figure it out.

Or is the prestige of working for the President of the United States worth the toll it is taking?

The hypocrisy Priebus is

The hypocrisy Priebus is guilty of is that our President uses "I've heard" or "Many people say that..." and "I've been told that. . . " all the time. It's one of Trump's signature rhetorical devices, to quote anonymously, to start rumors and false information floating out there. To accuse the Washington Post and the New York Times and other carefully-fact-checked and -sourced news outlets of abusing the custom of citing anonymous sources is laughable for its two-facedness.

Beyond that, though, you have to remember that Trumpo is a man of many personal grievances and vindictiveness.

Examples of late? Our new Secretary of State Tillerson wanted a seasoned hand to assist him as Deputy Secretary, but Donald Trump refused the appointment because that diplomatic expert had spoken against Trump during the electoral campaign. Just last week Trump fired six top career diplomats (not political appointees) from the State Department because they, too, were named in anti-Trump campaign news. In other words, Trump will "destroy [their] careers"--he promised that about ten days ago about a state or local law enforcement official that had angered another official. In other words, Trump's first impulse is to punish and crush and destroy individuals--be they news reporters or corporate heads or just plain people--who contradict him or don't "suck up" in the desired manner.

That's the danger faced by sources, who of course want to remain anonymous, that our dictator wannabe will finger them for personal and professional destruction.

And let's remember, too, that much of what Priebus and Trump are calling "fake news" is true because it's based on taped phone calls and actual quotations from Trump himself. Death by a thousand Tweets, so to speak.

Priebus doesn't go as far: I'll give him points for saying that the NYT and Post articles on Trump and Flynn, etc. were not false, just "overblown" or "overplayed"--meaning that they took the news space Trump wanted for his own statements. Priebus essentially said that it is not fake news, but how the press prioritizes the various pieces of the news in ways that do not praise the President, but question his judgements, that is the problem. In that, the press is The People's Advocate and Friend.

Amateurs doing amateurish work

I've been working the other side of the coin for almost as long as Mr. Black so I've spent a good long time contemplating the uses of "off the record", "not for attribution" and other similar constructs. It is a valuable tool for both reporters and sources but - like most tools - is best used by an experienced practitioner. I almost always counsel my clients to avoid it for just that reason.

Whining about when it is used effectively is like complaining about a carpenter who swings a good hammer. When Mr. Preibus whines about it, it's also hypocritical as I agree with Mr. Black that he's almost certainly done more than his share of it.

I suspect what's going on here is a twisted example of the old adage, "I won't ask you to do anything I'm not willing to do myself." Mr. Preibus and his cohort are working for a man who will literally say anything. He lies with abandon, he poses as his own PR person, he contradicts himself based on the audience in front of him. He expects others to do the same. That's why the chilling performance of Stephen Miller two weekends ago - a shrieking, authoritarian chanting that reminded me of the sheep in Animal Farm - earned the Donald J. Trump seal of approval in the form of a Tweet.

Deflection mark the direction

Its interesting to mark the evolution of argument. From "I know I am but what are you?" to removing the issue of argument. Solving problems are the most effective way of dealing with problems. But the current administration is committed to confrontation.

White House in chaos? Declare its a fine tuned machine. Leaks from the White House? Demand the leakers be identified by the press. To both points the solution is not denial, but improving the situation. Take away the issues the press and we the people are concerned about.

I spent a lifetime learning that developing an actionable plan and executing the plan created the best assurance of the survival of the objective and possibly the success of the initiative. Real pros rehearse, real pros plan, discuss, test, seek consensus, adjust and then execute. the Trump administration seems to do none of that - at least there is no evidence. Worst yet, Trump believes that his intuition is his most reliable guide. This from a fellow without government experience, essentially a non reader, a fellow who is pretty good at what he knows, but his knowledge is seriously limited and he is content with that.

But then evidence is overflowing. Its everywhere - the terrorism in Atlanta, the Massacre in Bowling Green, whatever disaster struck Sweden, the mess Obama left the country in, Hillary's emails, sadly the list seems to grow every day. So the alternatives are clear: keep lying, deflecting, accusing, denying, not accepting responsibility - or- fix the damn problems - harder but clearly more effective.

Its only going to get worse

The number cruncher s in DC are worried about getting the government statistics including how we measure the national debt, unemployment, exports, imports manipulated for political reasons, we are now entering the age of Fake statistics! Of course the news is from the enemy: Bloomberg,

https://www.bloomberg.com/politics/articles/2017-02-20/trump-team-foster...

"and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States." Looks like this was a "fake" oath!

Trump administration control

Trump administration control of the major agencies of the Executive branch includes dangers like his elimination or falsification of data (there's a tech-based volunteer"resist" movement across the country to digitally save government data sets, but that's retrospective and doesn't protect future data gathered that Trump's administration may hide or destroy if the data displeases Trump).

It also includes Trump's attempt--this past week--to insist that the FBI suppress and withhold information on its investigations into Trump's campaign and post-election White House contacts with Russia. He put pressure on our intelligence agencies to falsify, by "not having," their information about him and his administration.

Combine that kind of manipulation with suppression of our free press (labeling the press as Public Enemy; personal attacks in briefings on individual reporters; denying briefings access to major and highly-respected national news organizations), and "Houston: We have a PROBLEM."

Hmm, those who have to

Hmm, those who have to operate where the rubber meets the road (Pence, Mattis) are on an "apology tour" shoring up NATO and the Iraqi government. It is necessary to reassure our allies that we will stand by them versus Russia and will not seize a second opportunity to "take the Iraqi oil".

Now who are foreign leaders to believe ? The Vice President or the President ? The Secretary of Defense or the President ?

Nothing like sowing and showing confusion.

The damage is deep and getting deeper.

Priebus serves his master without concept of consequence.

Seems

It seems that only the Generals are able to stray from Trump's story line without severe consequences. Mattis seems able and willing to do so often, thank heavens.

I like your answer much better than the ones he gave. Of course, if the NY Times did say this, "that we have had constant contact with Russian officials. " I think the NY Times owe us citizens some significant proof.

But it's classified intelligence

Only Congress can reveal the contents of classified documentation of these phone calls and other contacts. It was our intelligence agencies that routinely bug the phones of Russian officials (all nation states do this these days, it seems) that have the proof of Trump's campaign people directly in contact with the Russians. Flynn admitted that he did, so it's the Trump statement that \he thinks that's fine that constitutes the American problem here, not his lying to Pence. His lying to the FBI, of course is a felony offense. The content was leaked to the press in summary, but the original data was not. So the media can't "prove" the truth they had revealed to them.

So the only way the public will get the information is for there to be--as Sen. Klobuchar is requesting--a special independent investigative committee, not some combination of the regular Congressional committees. Those regular committees, you see, are controlled by Republicans who suddenly see no reason to investigate seriously, although they spent more than three years on repeated hearings (fruitless) on Bengazi. A GOP House member was quoted as asking why Republicans should be investigating Republicans!

And please: It was Congress, not Obama, who refused to deal with their opposite during the Obama presidency. Gridlock was a Republicans-only phenomenon. As Obama said, he had to admire Sen. McConnell's effective strategy of Never dealing with President Obama. Sad, but effective in creating a situation where Congresspeople never even attended State Dinners at the White House when invited. To not have to speak to Obama.

I don't know about Priebus' soul, but . . .

I do believe that there are a lot of seared consciences, if not completely missing consciences, among this present administration in the White House. Oh, where is Jiminy Cricket hiding these days? Even poor, little wooden-headed Pinocchio had a conscience to answer to, albeit an insect who had to worry about getting trodden on. But, this really is no laughing matter, what is being allowed to happen these days under President Trump's administration. I believe I read where someone said that one of the first things that Vladimir Putin did after assuming the office of President of the Russian Federation was to disqualify the press - to make the Russian public believe that they could not really rely on the Russian press to give them factual stories of current news. Hmmmm, that sounds oddly familiar somehow, doesn't it?

I like the statement given by U. S. Senator John McCain, recently in which he stated that suppressing the free press was "how dictators get started".

And Mr. Black, once again, LOVED your article! My FAVORITE part has to be No. 3, in regards to our new President. Do you think his slacks are flame retardant? Wouldn't they have to be?

sleeping in or golf?

Thankfully I either sleep in or play golf on Sunday mornings. If I had to watch this kind of stuff I would likely be drowned by the coffee coming out of my nose.

A summary of the Trump administration

Those who have ZERO credibility in the Whitehouse are Trump, Pence, Priebus, Bannon, Spicer, Conway, and a free more laying in the weeds. Now these same people must convince over half of America, congress, allies, enemies, and others that they are speaking the truth when they speak. Trump thinks it is a game that no one knows what he means or stands for. The rest of them have lost their credibility trying defend a person who is unable conduct himself in a rational manner. Trump lies about provable things that are demonstrably true. Trump’s so called, finely tuned machine has parts that don’t even say the same thing when asked the same questions. Candidates are choosing not to serve because of Trump. I expect that list will grow. Senator McCain has it right, the Whitehouse is in disarray. I call it grossly dysfunctional. Politicians put up trial balloons all the time with the source of the info being anonymous? Priebus’ anonymous statement is a hypocritical statement. The Whitehouse has a very weak staff whose job is to make Trump sound rational and it isn’t working. There are protest worldwide because of Trump and his fake news. He has made the world less safe and people are feeling it. The beauty of all the protests is that they are massive, widespread, and all have been nonviolent. Trump had to hold a campaign rally to feel the loved again. The problem is he is disliked by a majority of Americans. We have the minority running the country once again. The Republicans in congress are busy trying to stay out of Trumps line of fire to save their own jobs, never mind the country.

I agree with Priebus.The

I agree with Priebus.

The mainstream media -- MinnPost included if it pretends to the journalistic standard that the public expects but can only hope for -- needs to quit operating under the double-standard it applies across the aisle.

This piece is clearly a hit piece on President Trump, as was an earlier piece with "nuts" in the title about the President's press conference of last week, wherein the author continues to "blame Bush", without disclosing the Democratic initiatives that caused the collapse under Bush, perhaps even a contrivance of the Progressive/left.

The MSM failed to properly vett Obama for the voters in 2007 - 2008 and has ever since been a shill for him, failing to disparage him over his gaffes, arrogance, failure to work with Congress, etc., as it now works to disparage President Trump and his administration.

Take a pill, author Black, and MinnPost.

MinnPost needs to quit pretending and should change it name to something like MinnOpPost.

One needn't write a 'hit piece' on Trump

One just has to quote him.
That's Priebus's problem -- he has to figure out how to avoid actually quoting Trump.
And when all else fails, avoid Obama's demonstrable successes in economic growth, employment and healthcare and accuse him of failing to work with a Congress that publicly announced that its only goal was to do everything it could to cause Obama to fail.

The equivalency argument!!

Yes, both sides are bad, but is it really a defense to say, "well they did it first?" It might be fun to do some forensic analysis to determine which political party was the first to be treated unfairly by the so called "mainstream media," but I suspect that exercise would be fruitless. And at what point is Brietbart considered mainstream? After all, a former editor is in the thick of the current administration.

Take the pill

“The mainstream media -- MinnPost included if it pretends to the journalistic standard that the public expects but can only hope for -- needs to quit operating under the double-standard it applies across the aisle.”

I find myself wondering: Just what IS that "journalistic standard that the public expects but can only hope for”? I also find myself wondering, just out of curiosity, what's involved in the "double standard" that MinnPost supposedly applies "across the aisle."

I believe Mr. Trump's vituperation speaks for him. No need for MinnPost or any other media outlet, left, right or center, to make things up that are unflattering to the President. He is, so far, doing that far better than any media personality not named Donald Trump.

Clearly for Some of Our Friends and Neighbors

and Mr. Trump,...

anything they don't like or don't agree with,...

must reflexively be pushed away and rigidly dismissed as "fake news."

It's called a "defense mechanism."

Any other approach risks allowing to enter their awareness,...

information with which they simply cannot deal.

When the foundation blocks of your emotional/intellectual world are made of the same material used to build a sand castle,...

even a single drip of water (truth?) feels like a raging tide of destruction.

Vetting and balanced?

Wouldn't you think we should "Vet" Trumps financial connections to insure we do not have a duplicitous president? Or is that not fair? Seems, last year this time Fox ran a negative story on HRC every day of the week. Seems I tuned into every debate Trump was in, don't need any main stream media to tell me the guy is a bigoted fascist, he did it all on his own, or was that a fake Trump in all those debates? What did the world miss?
PS: And what did the vetting miss about Obama, that he turned out to be better than we expected?

Misplaced sympathy

No one need feel sorry for "poor" Mr. Priebus. People with overweening ambition don't care who they work for, or what they say, or what they do. Mr. Priebus qualifies, having signed on with Trump far enough back that he's had plenty of opportunity to see how the President operates and what his standards are.

Machiavelli would be pleased, I think, with the behavior of this latest prince and his subordinates, and frankly, what strikes me most about the new President and his antics is the Medieval style of his operation. He speaks and behaves as if he were elected King, and that, like any good Medieval ruler, the loyalty of his vassals is paramount — more important than any inconvenient facts, and very useful for delegitimizing viewpoints that are critical of the King's actions or behavior. It's a stance that doesn't allow for any gray area at all — you're either for him or against him, because he won't permit anything that resembles middle ground.

Mr. Priebus didn't have much credibility in this household to begin with. He just has less of it now.

Machiavelli

or Mephistopheles?

Stockholm syndrome

The other day Trump was considered "sweet" and today there is sympathy for an unprincipled White House hack. These are troubling symptoms of the syndrome defined by Wikipedia as follows:

"a condition that causes hostages to develop a psychological alliance with their captors as a survival strategy during captivity.... These feelings, resulting from a bond formed between captor and captives during intimate time spent together, are generally considered irrational in light of the danger or risk endured by the victims. "

To quote Cher, "snap out of it!" Eric.

I also feel sorry for all

I also feel sorry for all Presidents’ spokespersons – they all lie and have to do it with straight faces. But, as Mr. Black pointed out, they know what they are getting themselves into and they are always free to resign.

Now, about this specific case. In theory, it is possible to make a case that media’s job is to tell American people the truth and if it (media) doesn’t do it, it is acting against American people’s interests. It doesn’t get to the point of being an “enemy” which assumes intent to harm but Trump, with his love for exaggerations, may naturally present it as such. And that is what Priebus should have said which is pretty much what Mr. Black suggested except I would have omitted the “Of course not” part. But, that is what he really did except in many more words and without denouncing the “enemy” part but isn’t it just semantics? And how many people would be willing to say explicitly that their boss lies? And what happened to a general who disagreed with Obama?

Now, about Trump’s lies in general. Sure, he lies. But I would like to have an example of his lie which lead to a bad policy decision or of his promise to do something that he didn’t. Those are the lies that matter. Like the ones about “keeping a doctor” or “red lines.” I may be missing those ones so I’d like to know.

Also, we should also understand that Trump-media relation is mutually beneficial. Why do you think NYT and WaPo rating is up?

By the way, here is a good piece about what media has to do: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/ap-national-guard-trump-media_us_58a...

They all matter!

Bad decision:
Build a wall and alienate one of our closest trading partners, start a trade war!
~ $23 Bill price tag, (and nothing better to do with that money) ~ $2100 for each illegal immigrantm, we have heard of opportunity cost yes? .

He has created a basket full of lies about how bad things are: The economy, Obama care, Environment, etc. etc. one would have to be "freeze dried or doing hard time" not to understand that there will be consequences to this level of: Fake Facts, created fear, rhetorical innuendo, etc. etc. .
Seems like saying in the 30's, hey Hitler lied, but nothing bad has happened, (YET) and then WWII and Millions of dead etc. etc. etc. or, whats wrong with lying about Iraq and WMD? Only to find out a $Tril and 36,000 casualties and 14 years later, huh, where did that come from? Some folks have a bit of perception to lunacy, evidently it appears not enough of us.

One example--on "day one" he

One example--on "day one" he was going to label China as a currency manipulator.

Didn't happen.

Oddly enough, on week 2 or 3 he got the trademark rights from China he had been seeking for years.

Best buddies now.

Response

Mr. Wagner, preventing illegal immigration is a very good idea and is exactly what he promised – no lies here. And economy was bad (labor participation rate, wages, poverty, middle class, etc.) and Obamacare didn’t work (too expensive, too high deductibles, no choice) – again, no lies. And one more time – Bush did not lie about Iraq and WMD (everyone agreed at that time with this) and the war was quickly and easily won. By the way, a lot bad happened in Germany in the 30’s…

Mr. Rovick, you are correct – Trump didn’t declare China a currency manipulator so he didn’t do as promise. However, his branding was approved before his election and he will not benefit anyway https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/worldviews/wp/2017/02/16/no-fake-tru... and China stopped manipulating currency and it would have been a wrong decision to call them for that http://money.cnn.com/2017/01/23/news/economy/donald-trump-china-currency/. On the other hand, Trump talked to Taiwan’s leader (for which he was savaged by Democrats) and showing our strength in the Pacific…

fake news

Breitbart's leading light just endorsed pedophilia. Mr. Bannon you have the floor.

The emperor has no clothes

Anyone else reminded of that old childhood story? We have an administration populated by enablers who will try to find a way to spin anything Trump says as the truth, or to deflect and distract from his latest trouble telling fact and fiction apart.

Apparently everyone is too afraid to tell him the truth.

Priebus, Spicer, Conway.... the list goes on. I do not feel one bit sorry for someone who accepts a position at this level of government and checks their brains and morals at the door to do so.

Thanks Eric ....

Good piece. I only differ in regard to not feeling remorse for RP. It is clearly a case of needing to lay in the bed one makes for himself. At this point he isn't sleeping on Trump sheets. However I think he is only a straw man for others. And in particular Bannon. Mr Brietbart is creating the tale being told either in conjunction with Trump or by manipulating him. The the public gets whatever pronouncement of tweet we read or hear and then the underlings defend it usually by insulting us. Some public investigation needs to take place regarding the flow chart and mission of Brietbart. News comments are out there but not much other then that. How is that "source" funded ? What are the credentials of it's employees ? How are employees paid ? What is the management structure ? What is the tax status ? What is the legal record ? And on and on ..,

Methinks thou dost protest too much

Can't the media question Trump and his toadies on why they are always so defensive about everything? AFTER Trump wins he spews garbage about his electoral college results, 3 million or so illegal popular voters, HUGE inauguration turn outs and calls all non-bootlicking news FAKE and the media can't figure out Trump is obviously hiding something? Trump's cognitive dissonance is so out of whack he's gotta go back out on the campaign trail. Somebody look behind the curtain already!

Amused, but sad

Once again, Lefties are spending copious amounts of ink (or watts) analyzing what Priebus "should" have said. He's not speaking to you or I or the other Lefties. He's speaking to the True Believers, the same ones that got them elected. And they don't want to hear they're failing or that anything is "their" fault. They want to believe it's a well-oiled machine and that, if things aren't succeeding, it's the fault of Liberals, Immigrants, the Media, etc.. You guys are analyzing the most efficient way to make an incision while the patient is bleeding out.

I'll bite

Got some suggestions where to stop the bleeding? Especially with folks that aren't as they say, so open minded.

Perhaps

Perhaps Mr. Priebus will talk to his boss about Mr. Trump's use of unidentified sources. The most recent that comes to mind was his response when questioned about the basis for his claim he had won the election with one of the largest electoral college margins in recent history. E.g., "I guess it was the biggest electoral college win since Ronald Reagan."

And then there was this exchange:

You said today that you had the biggest electoral margins since Ronald Reagan, 300 or more electoral votes. In fact, President Obama about 365 electoral votes.

DONALD TRUMP
Well, I’m talking about Republican. Yeah.

QUESTION
(inaudible)

DONALD TRUMP
I was given that information, I don't know, I was just given, we had a very, very big margin.

QUESTION
My question is why should Americans trust you when you accuse the information you receive for being fake when you provide that information?

DONALD TRUMP
Well, I don't know, I was given that information. I was given -- I actually, I've seen that information around. But it was a very substantial victory, do you agree with that? OK thank you, that's...

I found it interesting

During the questioning Trump admitted the information came from Fox News. Who would have suspected that Fox news would give out bad data. They are the masters of fake news.