- Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images
- White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders made unfounded remarks to the press about former FBI Director James Comey after he was fired.
- Sanders admitted this to the special counsel Robert Mueller’s office, saying her remarks were a “slip of the tongue” and “not founded on anything.”
- A redacted version of Mueller’s report on Russian election interference was released on Thursday.
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White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders admitted to the office of special counsel Robert Mueller that comments she made to the press on former FBI Director James Comey’s firing were “not founded on anything,” according to a redacted version of Mueller’s report released on Thursday.
After President Donald Trump fired Comey in May 2017, Sanders in a press conference told reporters “countless members of the FBI” had told the White House they’d lost confidence in the former FBI director.
“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,” Mueller’s report said. “Sanders told this Office that her reference to hearing from ‘countless members of the FBI’ ‘was a ‘slip of the tongue.'”
The report added that Sanders “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.”
Mueller's report said Sarah Huckabee Sanders told investigators she made comments to reporters that were "not founded on anything." Here's that moment ???? pic.twitter.com/cqrnTqKDLa
— POLITICO (@politico) April 18, 2019
Sanders’ tenure as White House press secretary has been marked by a contentious relationship with the media that has at times resulted in shouting matches with reporters.
Over the course of Trump’s time in the White House, the number of Trump administration press briefings have declined precipitously, which has sparked concerns from the White House Correspondents’ Association about a “retreat from transparency.”