Former White House spokesman Ari Fleischer had this critical advice for Josh Earnest, whom President Barack Obama named on Friday to succeed Jay Carney:
"The most important thing is to verify the information you're given," Fleischer, who served George W. Bush for more than two years, told Newsmax in an interview. "As the press secretary who says it, you need to be a bit of a skeptic."
Earnest, 39, served as Carney's No. 2 in the administration. A native of Kansas City, Mo., he is a graduate of Rice University who first worked on Obama's 2008 presidential campaign.
Carney, 49, will step down next month after holding the top job since February 2011. He was a journalist for 21 years before coming to the White House to head Vice President Joe Biden's press operation.
Fleischer, 53, who runs his own sports communications firm
in White Plains, N.Y., shared a few pearls of wisdom with Newsmax on how Earnest can make his job easier.
"Double-check inside the White House to make sure that anything and everything you say turns out to be truthful," he said.
"Otherwise, you make a mistake or you get pounded on national TV — and it doesn't feel good."
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