CBS’s Major Garrett Spars with Deputy Press Secretary

By Chris Ariens 

During today’s White House briefing CBS’s Major Garrett asked deputy press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders if the communications office was given “all of the best information to relay to the American public, through us,” about the firing of FBI Director James Comey Tuesday night.

“I think we were absolutely given the information that we could have had at that time. It was a quick-moving process,” she said. “We took the information we had, as best we have it, and got it out to the American people as quickly as we could.”

Garrett: And would you say that that information was accurate then or is more accurate now?

Huckabee Sanders: I would say after having a conversation with the president, you don’t get much more accurate than that.

Garrett: So by that standard, should reporters and the country essentially wait for a pronouncement from the president before believing that which is stated on his behalf by the White House communications staff?

Huckabee Sanders: Look, Major, I’m not going to get in a back and forth. In this process, I gave you the best information I had at the moment. I still don’t think that it contradicts the president’s decision. You guys want to get lost in the process.

Garrett: I don’t believe asking a question and getting an answer is lost in the process, Sarah, with all respect.

Huckabee Sanders: And I’m answering those questions.

She was also asked how it came to be that the American public got its first glimpse of a meeting between Pres. Trump and Russia’s foreign secretary on Wednesday via a Russian Government tweet.

“Usually independent media in the U.S. is typically invited into those meetings. Why didn’t that happen in this case?,” a reporter asked.

“It varies, actually,” she said. “Proper protocol was followed in this procedure.”