In Friday’s briefing, White House press secretary Sean Spicer denied that a tweet from President Trump threatening former FBI director James B. Comey was a threat, insisted that the president maintained a busy schedule and therefore it was hard to be accurate all the time, dodged a question about whether the president tapes White House meetings, boasted about how hard his people work, uttered the mantra “the tweet speaks for itself,” maintained that his shop didn’t, in fact, mislead the public about the rationale for Comey’s firing, even though it clearly did, and lamented how the media is obsessed with small things.

Another day at the office, in other words.

“He’s doing a good job,” said Spicer’s boss, the president, in an interview with Fox News’s Jeanine Pirro. “But he gets beat up.” Asked about the notion that Trump moves too fast for his own PR shop, Trump confirmed that’s true. The solution? “We don’t have press conferences … we just don’t have ’em, unless I have ’em every two weeks and I do them myself,” said Trump. “We don’t have ’em. I think it’s a good idea. First of all, you have a level of hostility that’s incredible, and it’s very unfair. Sarah Huckabee is a lovely young woman. You know Sean Spicer. He is a wonderful human being. He’s a nice man.”

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A nice man who has turned into something far different as White House press secretary. The president’s emphasis on “nice”-ness goes way back. At that famous Aug. 6, 2015, Fox News GOP debate, Trump came under fire from then-Fox News host Megyn Kelly over his awful treatment of women over the years. He shot back, “I’ve been very nice to you, although I could probably maybe not be, based on the way you have treated me. But I wouldn’t do that.” Somehow the president of the United States believes that “nice” personal qualities should somehow insulate himself and his appointees from “mean” media scrutiny.

Asked whether Spicer would be press secretary “tomorrow,” Trump said, “Yeah, he is, sure.” Then he noted that Spicer has been there from “the beginning.”

That’s something short of the full-throated endorsement a guy like Spicer might request from his boss. As evidence has piled up that Spicer & Co. have provided bogus official guidance on the Comey matter, media types are wondering whether there’s any point to having this crew in place at all. Why not just wait for an official statement directly from the president? Trump himself seems amenable to a direct channel, fantasizing about a White House press secretary Donald Trump in his chat with Pirro.

Given his own record on the truth, however, how would this approach solve anything?

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