Now that Trump's lawyers have contradicted a statement Sarah Huckabee Sanders made a year ago, she suddenly can't comment.
Trump’s participation in covering up his son’s now-infamous meeting with the Russians at Trump Tower to obtain dirt on Hillary Clinton is blowing up for a lot of people, including White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders.
At Monday’s press briefing, several reporters asked Sanders about her Aug. 1, 2017, claim that Trump “certainly didn’t dictate” the cover story Donald Trump Jr. put out about the meeting.
That assertion was contradicted by Trump’s own legal team in a newly revealed memo sent to special counsel Robert Mueller and published Saturday by the New York Times.
And now Sanders isn’t “certain” about anything.
“You said last August that president Trump did not dictate the statement about the Trump Tower meeting during the campaign, but the lawyers wrote to the special counsel that the president did dictate that statement,” reporter Jordan Fabian said. “What’s the reason for that discrepancy?”
Sanders twice refused to answer, referring Fabian to Trump’s lawyers.
Moments later, New York Times correspondent Peter Baker pressed her specifically about her own statement.
“In August, you said he ‘certainly didn’t dictate’ the statement,” Baker said. “I’m wondering if you can tell us the basis of your comment when you made it in August. Do you think that still stands? Is that still an operative statement, or do you retract it?”
“This is a reference back to the letter from the outside counsel,” Sanders said.
“It’s from your statement in August,” Baker pointed out.
“I understand, and it’s also pertaining to the president’s outside counsel,” Sanders replied.
“What was your basis for saying it in August?” Baker asked again.
Sanders told Baker she wouldn’t “get into a back and forth,” and again referred him to Trump’s lawyers.
At that press conference last August, Sanders told Fox News correspondent John Roberts that Trump “certainly didn’t dictate, but you know, he, like I said, he weighed in, offered suggestions, like any father would do.”
But as Trump’s own lawyers have now confirmed, that was a lie, either told to Sanders by Trump, or told to those reporters by Trump and his press secretary. Either way, she is now tying herself into absurd knots to avoid admitting as much.