Cameras have been banned from White House press briefings, so CNN, and possibly other news outlets, have come up with a decidedly not 21st century solution. They are sending a sketch artist to cover the briefings.
Bill Hennessy, the network’s regular sketch artist for Supreme Court proceedings, headed over to the White House on Friday afternoon and drew Press Secretary Sean Spicer’s afternoon briefing.
He didn’t have his usual easel, but he stood in the back of the briefing room to document the scene.
Twitter had some fun (and outrage) with it:
Don’t make me use the Podium!!!!! pic.twitter.com/5epxTE95vu
— Kate Pugh (@KATPOOH) June 23, 2017
— Evil MoPac (@EvilMopacATX) June 23, 2017
Well, it is a crime scene.
— Amber Fraley (@AmberBobamber) June 23, 2017
Ha! Just like a major trial! Trump the accused, Spicer for the defense, media as witnesses and it should be we the jury
— Donna McGill (@Cat_5_Cane) June 23, 2017
Trump not allowing TV coverage of White House briefings is the equivalent of putting blindfolds on the American people. And it’s DESPICABLE.
— JimAndrews518 (@JimAndrews518) June 23, 2017
This is a sick joke. Trump is not a dictator so quit acting like sheep and stand up for your freedom and rights.
— Tazzy Quest (@tazzyquest) June 23, 2017
Sketch artists have long been common to courtrooms, but they are a novelty for the White House, at least for the last quarter of a century. Every presidential administration for the last 25 years has allowed cameras in the press briefings, but now that the heat is on in the Russia investigation and now with an administration that lies more often than they tell the truth, news outlets have to get creative and good old analog sketch drawings it is. Hennessy isn’t exclusive to CNN. There’s a chance other news outlets might do the same thing.
Alienating the media is perhaps one of the worst decisions in an administration full of nothing but bad decisions. The Bush administration got away with sending us into two illegal wars because they were nice to the media. Instead, the Trump administration has nothing but hostility toward the mainstream media and as a result, for the first time since cameras were allowed in press briefings, the mainstream media is doing its job. In other words, Trump can credit the media near blackout for his low approval numbers and even for the aggressive approach to the Russian investigation.
Featured image via Win McNamee/Getty Images