The New York Times’ Katie Rogers and Maggie Haberman write about how former Fox News co-president-turned-White House communications director Bill Shine seems to be losing his influence over President Trump.
According to the Times, a longtime associate of the late Fox News chairman Roger Ailes said that by hiring Shine, President Trump was convinced “he was getting Roger,” someone who built Fox “with a keen eye for aggressive political strategy.” But that doesn’t appear to be the case.
The Times writes:
But Mr. Shine, according to his critics, has shown little understanding of the conservative media beyond the cable news ecosystem and his former network — the one place where the president does not need much assistance, and where Mr. Shine has few remaining admirers.
Mr. Shine has survived mainly by fulfilling the president’s desire to be in charge of his own messaging.
It has gotten to the point where Shine -who joined the administration in July 2018 – is seeing his role in the administration now been confined to “stagecraft,” and the President has “openly expressed skepticism about what he has done.”
During a sitdown with TV news anchors (who the president regularly calls “fake news”) prior to Tuesday’s prime time address, Pres. Trump reportedly criticized Shine and other administration officials who were in the room about the upcoming visit to the border. “It’s not going to change a damn thing,” Trump supposedly said, knocking the plan as a photo op urged on him by “these people behind you.”
President Trump has been demanding more positive news coverage, which he has not exactly received as of late. He feels that Shine was supposed to help make that happen, according to the Times.
But the two do seem to share a love for aggressive exchanges with journalists and news outlets.
The infamous Trump-Jim Acosta exchange, which resulted in the CNN chief White House correspondent having his White House press pass temporarily pulled, reportedly excited Shine. “This is going to be fun,” he apparently told White House press secretary Sarah Sanders.
The Times writes:
White House aides said Mr. Shine could not have planned that a confrontation between Mr. Trump and Mr. Acosta would take place, or known that it would turn into a fight that ultimately went to court, and insisted he was referring simply to the president’s feistiness before he went to the podium.
But Mr. Shine’s willingness to encourage a confrontation that led to Mr. Acosta’s White House access badge being pulled — something that aides for months had kept the president from doing — is in keeping with much of his private advice to the man he now works for.