8 of Sarah Huckabee Sanders' most notorious moments as White House press secretary


White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders’ departed the Trump administration on Friday to return to private life in her home state of Arkansas.

Sanders often experienced feuds with the White House press corps and came under heavy scrutiny for many of her claims and statements. Here are some that stand out from her tenure as President Donald Trump’s chief spokeswoman.


1. The Mueller report revealed she lied.

The special counsel report investigating Russian interference in the 2016 election revealed Sanders admitted her claim that FBI employees had lost faith in then-FBI Director James Comey were “not founded on anything.”


2. She made strange demands of reporters.

During a press briefing shortly before Thanksgiving, Sanders required each reporter in the room to preface their questions with an example of something they are thankful for, creating a series of awkward exchanges.

“I’m thankful for the First Amendment and for this exercise,” said Bloomberg’s Margaret Talev in one instance.

“I think it’s good preparation for Thursday and preparation for your families,” Sanders replied.


3. She defended Trump’s retweets of an anti-Muslim extremist.

After Trump retweeted misleading videos posted by anti-Muslim activists in the United Kingdom. Sanders vigorously defended it.

“Whether it’s a real video, the threat is real,” Sanders said. “His goal is to promote strong border security and strong national security.”


4. She revoked Jim Acosta’s press credentials.

After CNN reporter Jim Acosta refused to give up the microphone during a press conference at the White House, Sanders revoked his press credential.

“This conduct is absolutely unacceptable,” Sanders said.

Acosta ultimately got his hard pass back.


5. She referred to MS-13 gang members as “animals.”

When President Donald Trump referred to certain immigrants as “animals,” Sanders defended the remark to clarify that he was talking specifically about MS-13 gang members.

“This is one of the most vicious and deadly gangs,” she said. “Frankly, I think that the term ‘animal’ doesn’t go far enough.”


6. The White House Correspondents Dinner backlash

When comedian Michelle Wolf roasted Sanders during the 2018 White House Correspondents Dinner, Sanders and the rest of the Trump administration fired back at the comedy routine.

As a result, no administration personnel attended the dinner in 2019.


7. Reading the letter from “Pickle.”

A small child with the nickname “Pickle” wrote a letter to Trump. Sanders then read the letter aloud in a press briefing.

Sanders did this during Anthony Scaramucci’s 11-day tenure as White House communications director and threatened to end the briefing after facing a series of questions about the administration’s ban on transgender Americans serving in the military.


8. Not holding official press briefings.

It has been nearly 100 days since the last time Sanders held an official press conference in the White House briefing room. Instead, Sanders will hold short gaggles along the walkways of the White House grounds.

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