Tags: Trump Administration | gingrich | trump. shut | down | white | house | press

Gingrich to Trump: Shut Down the White House Press Briefings

(Fox News' "Hannity")

Saturday, 13 May 2017 11:54 AM

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich Friday called on President Donald Trump's threat to close down the daily White House press briefings, saying that instead the administration should focus on reporting "the big goals" to the nation.

"Donald Trump is not the chief entertainer of the United States," Gingrich told Fox News' "Hannity" program. "He's not the chief wrestling match with the elite media. He's the president of the United States with a big job and some very big goals. What they ought to do is get out of all of this junk. They ought to focus on the big goals."

Part of that includes reporting to the nation on those goals, Gingrich continued.

"They ought to report to the nation on the big goals," he said. "Ignore all of these reporters. Close down the press room. Send the reporters off. They can go to Starbucks across the street. I don't care where they go. These people are not committed to the truth. They're not committed to being neutral. Why would you hang out with a bunch of people who despise you?"

That would create a whole new tradition of reporting directly to the American people instead of through the press, the former speaker said.

"Maybe say to the American people, send in your questions and we'll take the best five questions and answer them by name," said Gingrich. "'Sallie Jones of West Virginia asked us this today.' But get beyond the elite media and treat them as the dishonest opponents, which is what they are, they're dishonest opponents pretending to be reporters."

Gingrich said he has read the transcripts of late President Franklin Delano Roosevelt's first press briefings, and learned FDR had some strict rules.

"They were all off the record," said Gingrich. "You could quote a senior White House source, but never him. Anyone who broke their confidence, if he said it's 'off the record,' it was never again allowed in the press briefing. That's how he started the very first meeting with the press after he became president. There's a pretty good lesson there."

On Friday, Trump suggested in a tweet that he might cancel "all future press briefings" and later told Fox News' Jeanine Pirro that he might follow through on that and give briefings himself every two weeks.

Meanwhile, the White House Correspondents' Association (WHCA) on Friday said White House briefings and press conferences are vital, as they allow journalists to ask questions from the nation's highest public officials.

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Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich Friday called on President Donald Trump's threat to close down the daily White House press briefings, saying that instead the administration should focus on reporting "the big goals" to the nation.
gingrich, trump. shut, down, white, house, press, briefings
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2017-54-13
Saturday, 13 May 2017 11:54 AM
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