Okay, admittedly this is a dog bites man story. Sarah Huckabee Sanders, President Trump’s folksy apparatchik, lies all the time. She lies reflexively, casually, resolutely, constantly. She lies with righteous indignation. She lies with scorn for anyone who might bring up the truth. She lies the way that Steph Curry shoots a basketball, unencumbered by second thoughts, as effortless and natural as blinking. She piles lies atop other lies, building a kind of city of lies where liars can gather to worship before the lie king. The truth is the creeping in of heretical doubt; lying is the true faith.
It is not in the nature of Sanders, the White House Press Secretary, to admit that she is a liar. But the Mueller report reveals that under oath, she admitted to federal investigators that she lied about the firing of former FBI director James Comey. She falsely told reporters that she had “heard from countless members of the FBI” supporting the firing that “the rank and file of the FBI had lost confidence in their director.” When met with skepticism, she repeated this utterly false claim, elaborating as she went, multiple times.
When asked by Special Counsel investigators, she it was a “slip of the tongue” and an unfounded comment made in the “heat of the moment.” What we regular folk might call a lie.
Here’s the relevant passage from the Mueller report:
In the afternoon of May 10, 2017, deputy press secretary Sarah Sanders spoke to the President about his decision to fire Comey and then spoke to reporters in a televised press conference. Sanders told reporters that the President, the Department of Justice, and bipartisan members of Congress had lost confidence in Corney, “[a]nd most importantly, the rank and file of the FBI had lost confidence in their director. Accordingly, the President accepted the recommendation of his Deputy Attorney General to remove James Comey from his position.” In response to questions from reporters, Sanders said that Rosenstein decided “on his own” to review Comey’s performance and that Rosenstein decided “on his own” to come to the President on Monday, May 8 to express his concerns about Comey. When a reporter indicated that the “vast majority” of FBI agents supported Comey, Sanders said, “Look, we’ve heard from countless members of the FBI that say very different things.” Following the press conference, Sanders spoke to the President, who told her she did a good job and did not point out any inaccuracies in her comments. Sanders told this Office that her reference to hearing from “countless members of the FBI” was a “slip of the tongue.” She also recalled that her statement in a separate press interview that rank-and-file FBI agents had lost confidence in Comey was a comment she made “in the heat of the moment” that was not founded on anything. …
The President’s draft termination letter also stated that morale in the FBI was at an all-time low and Sanders told the press after Comey’s termination that the White House had heard from “countless” FBI agents who had lost confidence in Comey. But the evidence does not support those claims. The President told Comey at their January 27 dinner that “the people of the FBI really like [him],” no evidence suggests that the President heard otherwise before deciding to terminate Comey, and Sanders acknowledged to investigators that her comments were not founded on anything.
Sanders is paid around $180,000 a year by taxpayers to provide information from the White House to the free press and the American people. It’s really something to watch her lying in the video above with such animal certainty. The Mueller report now reveals she was simply making stuff up without any basis in fact at all. One might conclude that you can’t take anything she says at face value. Her tongue just keeps slipping.