The White House communications team underwent a major change on Friday, as Press Secretary Sean Spicer turned in his resignation, Sarah Huckabee Sanders was elevated to Spicer’s job, and Wall Street financier Anthony Scaramucci was brought in by President Donald Trump to be the new Communications Director, delivering a new tone in dealing with the press.
“The President is phenomenal with press,” said Scaramucci. “I love the President. The President is a very, very effective communicator.”
While Scaramucci – known by many insiders as “Mooch” – made clear that he thinks the news media does not treat the President fairly, Mr. Trump’s new Communications Director laid out that message in a totally different way in his first few minutes in the White House Briefing Room.
As for Spicer, he will be replaced at the podium by Sarah Huckabee Sanders, who will move from Deputy to White House Press Secretary.
Spicer, who battle relentlessly with the press, and never seemed to have the full confidence of the President, will officially leave the White House in August.
“It’s been an honor and a privilege to serve President Donald Trump and this amazing country,” Spicer wrote on Twitter. “I will continue my service through August.”
While there had been questions that Spicer wanted no part of working with Scaramucci, the next White House Communications Director went out of his way to praise Spicer.
Maybe most notable about the Friday briefing was how Scaramucci dealt with reporters, chiding reporters about their coverage – but not denouncing them in an in-your-face manner, as Spicer did in his very first briefing room appearance, when he complained about press coverage of the crowd size at the Inauguration.
“There feels like there’s a little bit of media bias,” Scaramucci said, “and so what we hope we can do is de-escalate that and turn that around, and let’s let the message of the President get out to the American people.”
One interesting note about Scaramucci, is that like his boss, the President, Scaramucci has given political donations to both political parties. It wasn’t hard to find old tweets that show Scaramucci saying nice things about Hillary Clinton, the need for action on gun control and climate change, and more.
“I hope she runs, she is incredibly competent,” Scaramucci tweeted about Clinton in April of 2012.
But even with donations to President Obama and other Democrats, Scaramucci made clear that he is an unabashed friend and supporter of President Trump.
“The president is phenomenal with the press, and he’s a great communicator,” Scaramucci said.