Sarah Huckabee Sanders had nothing to say to repeated questions about Stormy Daniels' interview Sunday night.
Trump’s extramarital affair with Stormy Daniels continues to dominate the news cycle. But he and press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders are responding to it by saying nothing.
Several weeks ago, Trump tried to get clever about the story by sending Sanders out to pretend that Trump had already beaten Daniels in arbitration. Since that tactic blew up in their faces, Trump has hidden from reporters, and Sanders has relied on tightly scripted stonewalling.
“We’ve addressed this extensively and I don’t have anything else to add,” she replied twice when asked about Daniels at a briefing on March 9.
At Tuesday’s briefing, the first since Daniels’ “60 Minutes” interview, she kept up the avoidance.
Reporters asked about the Daniels affair five times. Each time, Sanders responded with variations of “Look, I can tell you that the president’s denied the allegations. Anything beyond that I would refer you to the president’s outside counsel.”
And on Wednesday, reporters brought up the subject at least three more times. Yet Sanders again claimed that she had addressed the questions she has refused to answer, falsely insisted that Trump has denied the affair, and referred reporters to counsel.
Trump’s conspicuous silence and Sanders’ inartful dodging demonstrate just how frightened this White House is of the Stormy Daniels story.
The affair itself could be extremely damaging to Republicans politically. But Trump’s effort to silence Daniels could also place him in serious legal jeopardy. According to former Trump aide Sam Nunberg, special counsel Robert Mueller is asking witnesses about Trump’s payments to multiple women. And Daniels’ attorney Michael Avenatti has made clear there is much more evidence than his client’s word.
Avenotti has also hinted that any explicit denial from Trump could lead to the release of such evidence.
Trump can’t hide forever, and conspicuous lack of a vehement denial direct from Trump of Daniels’ allegations is notable.
This story is likely to get more difficult for Trump — and more awkward for Sanders.