In a role most of us wouldn’t wish on our worst enemies, Spicer sought to defuse criticism of Trump’s expensive trips to Florida, his golfing habit, baseless wiretapping claims, and the ongoing investigation into Russian links.
These are five WTF moments from his latest briefing.
1). Describing $2m dollar ‘Winter White House’ trips as “part of being president”
And while many former presidents did travel to their respective homes or on vacation, they didn’t do so as early or as often as Trump has.
2). Suggesting Trump’s prior criticism of Obama’s golfing habit was valid because the pair “use golf” differently
Despite dozens of tweets criticising Obama, Trump sees no hypocrisy in his golfing habits.
And then claiming that Trump’s golfing “serves US interests”
Because of tee-time diplomacy.
3). Announcing Trump won’t apologise for suggesting Obama ‘wiretapped’ him, despite the FBI confirming he didn’t
4). Looking ‘visibly shaken ― frightened’.. ‘nervous, defensive, irritable’
Some commentators said Spicer appeared ‘shaken―even frightened’ during the briefing.
“This could well be the beginning of the end of this Administration,” one pundit tweeted.
5). Claiming former Trump Campaign Manager Paul Manafort played a “minimal role”.. then backtracking
In perhaps the biggest eyebrow-raising moment, Spicer sought to distance the White House from former Trump advisors who may now be subject to an FBI investigation into links with Russia.
In doing so, Spicer suggested the man who managed Donald Trump’s presidential campaign “had a very limited role” - despite at least two months in charge.
“Obviously there’s been discussion of Paul Manafort, who played a very limited role for a very limited amount of time,” Spicer said.
And he described Michael Flynn, the former national security advisor, as a “volunteer” on the Trump campaign.
Manafort managed the campaign between April and August last year, before resigning after links to a pro-Russian former Ukrainian President were exposed.
Spicer later clarified: “Just so we’re clear, I’m not dismissing Paul Manafort as a hanger-on.
“I believe Paul was brought on sometime in June and by the middle of August he was no longer with the campaign, meaning that for the entire final stretch of the general election, he was not involved.”