You already have a ritual form of combat, an exercise in pulling teeth, and a staple of cable-news-for two decades.
Now the trump team says it can dramatically change the daily White house press briefings change.
And while there are arguments on both sides, it is an advantage for the briefing that Donald Trump and his followers can’t recognize it.
I saw this first hand, when I write “Spin cycle,” my book about the media and the Clinton White House. I found it out by shadowing Mike McCurry, the press Secretary, the decided to the full briefings in front of the camera, much to his eventual regret.
In the prep sessions before the daily briefing and the process is similar to Josh Earnest, and Jay Carney, Robert Gibbs, Dana Perino, Tony Snow, Scott McClellan, Ari Fleischer, and the rest,—the speaker has to anticipate media questions and answers that develop in a ring binder. And in this process, which includes consultation with the Cabinet agencies, forging the administration to clarify its guidelines.
To do, In other words, the discipline of a daily briefing, forcing the government to decide what it thinks.
Now Trump can decide that the government of Twitter, or any other method. Every President tried to bypass the media to some degree. Barack Obama has done it often, podcasts, late night shows, ESPN, Facebook, and other forums as an alternative to the major Newspapers and networks.
But the daily briefing is the only opportunity, the White house reporters, press a top administration spokesman on the day on the developments, controversies, scandals and political debates. And it is a godsend for the regional Reporter, or trade Reporter, have not access a lot and want to ask questions about specific topics or local issues.
From the administration point of view, it is an opportunity to drive a message and take it to the critics. And the press Secretary has the task, take a lot of flak, the hits otherwise, his or her boss.
There is a long history here. Woodrow Wilson held the first presidential press conference. But by Harry Truman, most of these off-the-record Affairs and a President was able to change the assembled pen, to quote the offending. Dwight Eisenhower held the first televised press conference, and Jack Kennedy was the first to regularly spar with reporters in front of the camera. In modern times, even the press have been made Secretary of the interior to stars and lots of news.
As for the presence of the cameras—there are also off-camera sessions gaggles called—everyone knows the game. The TV reporters tend to be a little more bombastic, and are specialized in questions, aggressive questions, you can give back to their news broadcasts. The press-secretaries, in General, a little bit more combative on hot issues, you know, you are likely to reverberate get one sound bite, is that through the echo chamber.
Trump is entitled for the management of its relations with the media the way he does. But it would be short-crop-sighted or downgrade the daily briefings. Also, wouldn’t the removal of the cameras ruin the reality show?
Howard Kurtz is a Fox News analyst and host of “MediaBuzz” (Sundays 11 a.m. and 5 p.m. ET). He is the author of five books and has its headquarters in Washington. You can follow him at @Howard Kurtz. Click here for more information on Howard Kurtz.