White House discussing moving Spicer to senior communications role

Posted June 20, 2017

CNN's senior White House correspondent Jim Acosta on Monday blasted a White House decision to bar recording equipment from its daily press briefings - saying it makes press secretary Sean Spicer "kinda useless" and allows "evasive answers" to go untaped. In that position, which is considered a promotion for Spicer, he would manage the press office, as well as other branches of the communications department.

"I wish we had some video or some audio from this briefing to share with you, but the White House mandated that we are not allowed to cover the White House press secretary for the United States of America in that fashion", Acosta said.

The new approach represents a departure. "The White House. And it's just, it's freaky", Acosta continued, seeming stunned.

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This comes amid a broader staff shake-up after communications director Michael Dubke resigned in late May after just three months on the job.

With the upcoming changes, Spicer will assume a supervisory role over both the press and communications offices.

Spicer will no longer handle day-to-day press duties, including daily media briefings, and will instead oversee communications for the entire administration.

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Deputy Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders will brief reporters from now on as the White House looks for a replacement.

Spicer's time at the White House briefing room podium in recent weeks has decreased amid rumors that Spicer would soon transition to a different role, with some suggesting the President was unhappy with Spicer's performance in the public-facing role.

While the president would still like Spicer to do briefings from time to time, Spicer's preference is to work exclusively behind the scenes.

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The drama comes after weeks of rumors that Trump planned to shrink Spicer's public role after the president's first foreign trip overseas.