Sean Spicer and the rest of Donald Trump’s shady administration have become more and more secretive over the past few weeks. One of the ways in which this administration is trying to shut the American public out is by holding off-camera briefings, which are becoming more common now – and the free press is having none of it.
In yet another off-camera briefing that was held on Monday, Spicer got into a testy exchange with reporters, which was started by CNN’s Jim Acosta. During the press briefing, Acosta demanded to know why the White House wouldn’t turn on the cameras, and why they continued to restrict the press.
Acosta first announced his annoyance over the fact that the briefing would only be aired via audio on Twitter:
Back in the press room, Spicer refused to call on Acosta, forcing the CNN reporter to shout across the room. Spicer tried to ignore Acosta and brushed him off by saying, “There’s no cameras on Jim,” which led Acosta to fire back:
“Maybe we should turn the cameras on, Sean. Why don’t we turn the cameras on? Why not turn the cameras on, Sean? They’re in the room, the lights are on.”
Spicer continued to ignore Acosta, but later in the briefing Acosta demanded to know again, “Why are the cameras off Sean?”
Spicer continued to speak to other reporters and tried to ignore the frustrated Acosta, who continued to say, “Can you just give us an answer to that? Can you tell us why you turn the cameras off? Why are they off Sean?”
Finally, more reporters jumped in. April Ryan backed Acosta up and said, “It is a legitimate question.”
OANN reporter Trey Yingst pleaded with Spicer, “Can we get this out of the way, can we address the cameras issue?”
Finally, Spicer decided to give a (pathetic) answer:
“Yes, some days we’ll have them some days we won’t. The president is going to speak today in the Rose Garden, I want the president’s voice to carry the day. Look, this is nothing inconsistent with what we said since day one.”
You can listen to the intense exchange in the press room below:
Many other reporters remarked on social media how “tense” the exchange between Spicer and Acosta had been: