Sarah Sanders is Above the Shame Game

Mika is mad.

Mika Brzezinski, otherwise known as the future Mrs. Joe Scarborough, went ballistic Tuesday on her MSNBC morning show over comments by White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders, who had responded to reporters’ questions about President Trump’s “Pocahontas” jibe the day before.

“What’s wrong with her? How can she do that job?” an exasperated Mika rhetorically asked the head-shaking panel. “How can she look in the mirror every day and say, ‘I am doing the right thing for the American people’ because you are not.”

Mika’s voice shook with anger. “Unbelievable. This is the president and that is the spokesperson for the president of the United States, sitting there, defending his racism. His bigoted language. His stupidity. This is where we are.”

Her sphincter-faced betrothed sat next to her, amused. But that wasn’t all. The woman who divorced her husband last year to hook up with her twice-divorced co-host amid years of cheating rumors continued to slam Sanders’ integrity:

It’s sick. The whole relationship [between Trump and Sanders] is sick. You have taken the oath. You are raising three children. Stop.

Set aside for a moment the audacity of one professional mother (Brzezinski) using the children of another professional mother (Sanders) as a way to shame her. But since Brzezinski is a liberal and Sanders is a conservative, no one bothered to call her out on it. Also set aside for a moment the fact that Mika’s tirade occurred a few days after she and her co-hosts were busted for pre-taping their Black Friday morning broadcast and passing it off as live television. This included “Truth Goddess” Mika informing viewers of how she cooked the turkey with the guts in it and how “it was still a little frozen.”

So, what got Mika mad? It was Sanders’ answer to a question from ABC News correspondent Jonathan Karl, who had asked about Trump’s “offensive” taunt, directed at Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren:

I think what most people find offensive is Senator Warren lying about her heritage to advance her career.


NBC News reporter Kristen Welker pressed Sanders, asking whether it is appropriate for the president to use a “racial slur” in any context. “I don’t believe it is appropriate for him to make a racial slur, or anybody else. I don’t think that it is, and I don’t think that was the president’s intent.”

That was it. Hardly justification for Mika’s morning meltdown. Perhaps nuptial-planning has Mika in a tizzy. She’s already told us how it has affected her cooking. The pressure on brides these days…

But Mika was just piling on to the harsh media criticism directed at Sanders over the past few weeks. Unlike her easily-mockable predecessor Sean Spicer, who was often flustered, emotional, and tongue-tied, Sanders is unflappable. Despite her youth and inexperience, Sanders picked up on Washington’s media game quickly—and she’s beating them at it. She’s much better than Spicer at pivoting back to the White House’s central message or deflecting to another issue (i.e., Warren’s deceit about being Native-American) and this has the anti-Trump mob in a huff. (I’ve have written about other recent attacks on her here.)

Later that day, self-described GOP political consultant Rick Wilson—who should thank God every day that Trump is president because, without Trump, there would be no audience for this toad’s profane, anti-Trump rants on cable news—also went after Sanders on CNN:

The reason she does that is because her job is contingent on her being a serial congenital liar in defense of Donald Trump’s latest outrages. I mean, she probably has some tiny shriveled up husk left in her soul where she realizes this is the wrong thing to do but she does it anyway because otherwise, they’ll replace her.

Wilson went on:

Few presidents go out and sling racial overt code words like that, few presidents go out and crap on the dignity and legacy of people like these code talkers, these heroic veterans, and then send their press secretary out to answer questions in a way that isn’t saying, ‘Wow, the president regrets what he said today. He made a mistake. He truly wishes he had not said that.’ Instead she goes out and tries to bury people in an avalanche of horseshit everyday, because this is her job.

Wilson also accused Sanders of defending something that is “demonstrably racially charged.” Pretty rich coming from the guy who created the 2008 ad tying Reverend Jeremiah Wright to then-presidential candidate Barack Obama, wouldn’t you say? Fending off criticism, even from the McCain campaign, that the ad had racial overtones, Wilson defended his video, telling The New Republic a few days before the election that he is “of the philosophy that you wage a campaign of full engagement and you use every tool in the toolbox.” Wilson also bragged how the ad helped raise more than $5 million for his pro-McCain PAC and later said the attack against Wright was an effort to rally the “ethnic Catholic median male” behind McCain. Seems like this should be the last guy to lecture about race-baiting politics.

Even Thanksgiving didn’t stop Sanders’ detractors from acting like turkeys. Sanders tweeted out two photos of her with the ceremonial White House turkey and referenced an episode of “The West Wing,” when the fictional press secretary had to deal with the bird:

Two of the show’s actors exchanged some embarrassing tweets about Sanders’ shout-out to the show:

Ok, I hate to be the skunk at their “Fantasy Island” garden party, but, guys: You didn’t really work in the White House. Sarah Sanders is no C.J. Cregg because C.J. Cregg is a television character and Allison Janney is an actress who read lines other people wrote for her and who dealt with fictional reporters and a fictional president. Sarah Sanders, on the other hand, is a real person with a real job in the real White House.

Fictional presidential aides weren’t the only folks lacking in holiday spirit. CNN/American Urban Radio Networks correspondent April Ryan, apparently in a foul mood on Black Friday, unleashed a social media conspiracy complete with #piegate and #fakepie hashtags, about the Sanders family holiday dessert. After Sanders tweeted a photo of a pie, saying she “managed to make this Chocolate Pecan Pie for Thanksgiving at the family farm!” Ryan’s Spidey senses were aroused: She posted more than a dozen childish tweets, questioning the authenticity of Sanders’ pastry (yes, I just wrote that):

The New York Daily News couldn’t resist getting in on Ryan’s fun:

Sanders seemed to take the insults in stride, but Ryan couldn’t even graciously accept Sanders offer to bake her a pie the following week:

Considering how Sanders is getting under everyone’s skin, she must be doing something right. And it’s unlikely these personal attacks will stop anytime soon. Maybe they will tell her children there is no Santa Claus? At this rate, it’ll be interesting to see how low they will go.

Look: it’s not “whataboutism” to contrast the harsh interrogations and personal, mean-spirited criticism Sanders now faces compared to how her two male predecessors in the Obama White House were treated. After all, these were the mouthpieces for an administration that lied about Obamacare, the Benghazi terror attacks, and the IRS scandal, just to name a few whoppers. Until his final day, Josh Earnest forcefully and facetiously peddled the Trump-colluded-with-Russia fable, even citing the dossier and helping legitimize Buzzfeed’s initial story on the document. It’s too bad Earnest and Jay Carney did not get the Sarah Sanders treatment.

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