Trump threatens to cancel briefings; Spicer back at podium

The Trump administration was criticized this week when Deputy Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders struggled to reconcile conflicting statements made by President Trump regarding the firing of FBI Director James Comey.

- As commentators on cable TV called President Trump firing Federal Bureau of Investigation director James Comey an abuse of power, the president was startled and infuriated by how his action was being received, according to a person with knowledge of his reaction.

Ahead of Trump's inauguration, the White House floated the possibility that it would move the press briefing room out of the West Wing.

But at the same time Stone says he wants to testify, since members of Congress' panels involved in the Russian Federation probe "have disparaged me publicly".

But when asked if Spicer was safe in his job as press secretary, Trump demurred, saying "he's been there from the beginning".

He then ordered for the lights to be turned off and stood in darkness between two tall hedges as he answered questions from reporters.

The only problem? Press Secretary Sean Spicer was evading reporters by standing either in or "among" bushes on White House grounds.

Like many administrations, the relationship between Trump and the press has been tense.

Another source close to Spicer added, "Keep in mind Sean is following military orders, not military suggestions".

Trump's remark on social media came just hours after The New York Times published an account of a dinner he shared with Comey a week after he was sworn in. The president, a devoted viewer of coverage about himself, has given several interviews, most recently to NBC News' Lester Holt on Thursday, although he has favoured Fox News' friendlier venue. Spicer huddled with his staff among bushes near television sets on the White House grounds, not "in the bushes", as the story originally stated. "We took the information we had as best we have it and got it out to the American people as quickly as we could".

Spicer said Trump's "robust schedule" means that "sometimes we don't get an opportunity go get in to see him and get his full thinking".

In the Fox interview, Trump seemed to herald his own work ethic.

Explaining his decision, Trump said: "James Comey will be replaced by someone who will do a far better job, bringing back the spirit and prestige of the Federal Bureau of Investigation". "Another president, I won't use names, but another president doesn't doing what I'm doing".

This is an important exchange.@jeffmason1 pushes again and again on Trump's "tapes" tweet.

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