It’s been a long time since Sarah Huckabee Sanders graced the White House Press Room’s briefing podium, but on Monday, the Trump administration’s chief liar was back—and just as bad as ever.
After a soporific presentation from acting Office of Management and Budget director Russell Vought regarding the president’s predictably garbage 2020 budget request, Sanders graced the White House press corps with a characteristically brief round of questions and answers where she tried, and spectacularly failed, to defend Trump’s recent assertions that “The Democrats hate Jewish people,” and that they are “an anti-Jewish party.”
“The president’s been an unwavering and committed ally to Israel, and the Jewish people,” Sanders claimed, before flipping the question of whether or not Democrats are actually anti-Semites (they’re extremely not) to claim that Republicans are actually good on the issue of hating Jews (they’re extremely not).
“It should be done the way Republicans did it when Steve King made terrible comments,” Sanders said. “We called it out by name, we stripped him of his committee memberships, and we’d like to see Democrats follow suit.”
When ABC’s Jon Karl pointed out that Trump never actually spoke out against King, Sanders insisted she had, and that should be good enough. “I speak on behalf of the president on a number of topics,” Sanders answered. “I’ve talked about that a number of times, and I’d refer you back to those comments.”
The press corps, however, was having none of it.
Next up was NBC News’ Hallie Jackson, who asked point-blank: “Yes or no, does the president truly believe that Democrats hate Jews?”
Sanders continued to twist and dodge the question, finally replying: “I think that’s a question you ought to ask the Democrats.”
Then came CNN’s Jim Acosta, who asked simply whether “that kind of rhetoric just sort of beneath everybody?”
Sanders began her answer by inexplicably pivoting to abortion. “Look, I think the real shame in all this is that Democrats are perfectly capable of agreeing on the fact that they’re comfortable ripping babies from straight from their mother’s womb or killing a baby after birth,” Sanders said, “but they have a hard time condemning the type of comments from Congresswoman Omar.”
“Democrats don’t hate Jewish people,” Acosta answered. “It’s just silly. It’s not true.”
Acosta went on to raise Trump’s “very fine people” comment after last year’s white supremacist Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, VA, which, Acosta noted, “essentially [suggested] there were ‘very fine people’ in the Nazis.” During that rally, white supremacist James Fields drove through a crowd of anti-racist protesters, murdering Heather Heyer and injuring over two dozen others with his car.
“That’s not at all what the president was stating,” Sanders insisted. “The president has been incredibly clear and consistently and repeatedly condemned hatred, bigotry, racism in all of its forms, whether it’s in America or anywhere else. And to say otherwise is simply untrue.”
It’s almost reassuring to know that even after more than a month away from the White House briefing room, Sarah Huckabee Sanders hasn’t lost her touch when it comes to spewing total bullshit on behalf of the president.