During his first official press briefing on Monday, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer was challenged on some of his recent false statements, and he said that the Trump administration sometimes disagrees with the facts reported by the media.
About a half-hour into the press briefing, ABC’s John Karl asked Spicer if it is his intention to always be honest with the American people during press briefings. This came two days after Spicer stated that Trump’s presidential inauguration was the most well attended in history, something that is demonstrably false.
“I believe that we have to be honest with the American people,” Spicer said. “I think sometimes we can disagree with the facts. There are certain things that we may not fully understand when we come out, but our intention is never to lie to you.”
Asked about the incorrect numbers Spicer provided on Saturday about D.C. Metro public transit, Spicer said that that this was the data he had been provided at the time.
Spicer did, however, double down on his statement that this year’s inauguration was the most watched ever, saying that this is true if you factor in all the people who viewed it on social media. This may be true, though it’s different from what Spicer said over the weekend; he originally stated that it was also the most watched inauguration in person, even though Barack Obama’s 2009 inauguration clearly drew a bigger crowd.
As he did over the weekend, Spicer went on to criticize the media for its coverage of Trump, focusing on a false report that briefly spread on social media recently that Trump had removed a bust of Martin Luther King Jr. from the Oval Office. The reporter responsible for this quickly apologized; Spicer accepted the apology on Twitter, although today he said that this was not really an apology since it wasn’t directed at him but was instead directed at his colleagues.