Sarah Huckabee Sanders, the daughter of a lying bigot who became infamous for her work as deputy White House press secretary and later White House press secretary for another lying bigot, will leave the White House at the end of June.
That bigot in question, President Trump, made the announcement last week on Twitter (naturally). Trump described Sanders as “a very special person with extraordinary talents, who has done an incredible job!” Sanders will be returning home to her native state, Arkansas, where her soon to be former boss has already offered some professional advice: “I hope she decides to run for Governor of Arkansas – she would be fantastic.”
Following the announcement, Sanders joined Trump and other White House staffers at an event officially devoted to criminal justice policy to praise Trump and the other nefarious characters who work under him.
“I’ve loved every minute, even the hard minutes,” Sanders said. “I love the president. I love the team that I’ve had the opportunity to work for.”
I’m not vomiting in my mouth a little bit, you are.
In a fairer world, Sarah Huckabee Sanders would be a pariah. She is a professional liar who worked under a pathological liar. She was also not especially good at her job given her legacy will ultimately be the death of the White House press briefing. To wit, the announcement of her departure arrived on the 94th day since she last held a daily press briefing.
She is also a racist. During an off-camera press briefing in July 2017, reporters asked Sanders about the role easy access to guns played with violence in Chicago. “I think that the problem there is that it’s a crime problem,” Sanders said in response. “I think crime is probably driven by morality more than anything else.”
It takes a lot of nerve to be a self-professed Christian who routinely feeds falsehoods and propaganda to the public on behalf of a would-be dictator who is practically all of the seven deadly sins wrapped into a human being whose skin is the color of Sunkist soda to touch on the morality of others, but this is why Sarah Sanders served in her position as long as she did. She is shameless. She is soulless. She is consistent in her insufferableness.
Unfortunately, we know the world isn’t fair. Look at the racist game show host currently serving as president. Worse, look at the fate of all those who have left the White House.
Sean Spicer, the pathetic liar Sanders succeeded, may have turned down a slot on Dancing with the Stars, but it’s disgusting that he was offered the chance to embarrass himself with his lack of rhythm all the same. Even worse is the post-White House position he did accept: visiting fellow at Harvard University. Harvard students may have gone on to mock what he had to say, but Spicer should have never been extended an invitation, to begin with.
There is also Hope Hicks, whose relative silence in the public sphere made her appear less villainous than her colleagues, but she played a pivotal role in both the Trump presidential campaign and his administration. Both are racist, xenophobic, and sexist in terms of both rhetoric and policy. When Hicks left, she went on to become the chief communications officer of Fox, a new entity bred out of the Walt Disney Company’s acquisition of most of 21st Century Fox. In other words, complicity in the horrific has borne no other consequence for Hicks other than now being paid handsomely.
There is Omarosa Manigault Newman, who was shoved out of the White House and ended up writing a tell-all entitled Unhinged: An Insider’s Account of the Trump White House, which went to number one on the New York Times best-seller list. She may never be able to walk around an Essence Festival in peace ever again, but I’m sure the money Omarosa earned from the book and whatever else came after it helps her get through.
As for the man who helped get rid of her, former White House Chief of Staff John Kelly, his post-White House moves just might be the most revolting. Along with paid speaking gigs, Kelly has now joined the board of Caliburn International, the parent company of Comprehensive Health Services, which “operates four massive for-profit shelters that have government contracts to house unaccompanied migrant children.” In other words, Kelly, who mind you tried to protect a woman beater and made racist remarks squarely aimed at Black women, is now profiting off of the Trump administration’s cruel treatment of migrants — including locking babies up in cages.
The others haven’t fared so badly either. White supremacist Steve Bannon continues to score jobs and attention. Oh, by the way, apparently Bannon may have the chance to slither his way back into the White House. Anthony Scaramucci continues to be asked to appear on television despite saner people’s pleas for standards. Reince Priebus has joined the Navy; that doesn’t sound as rage-inducing as the others, but he still isn’t worth a damn either.
Why wouldn’t Sarah Sanders be rewarded with the governorship when so many of her fellow villains have done pretty good for themselves?
Already, the same media Sanders helped mislead and malign is rewarding her.
On Monday, the New Yorker published “Is Sarah Sanders The Future of the Republican Party?” In it, Sanders confirms to Paige Williams that she is seriously considering jumping in the next Arkansas gubernatorial race in 2022.
“For three and a half years I was focussed on serving the President on his campaign and in the White House, and now we’ll take some time to reflect, spend time as a family, and decide what’s next,” Sanders explained.
What most vexes me about that story is that despite the plethora of reasons to not praise her, some members of the political press do so anyway.
“Everybody’s worried about who Trump will pick next,” one reporter told Williams. “Whatever Sarah’s flaws were, we could work with her. We’re afraid he’ll pick one of these Fox News personalities who doesn’t actually try to get answers for reporters behind the scenes. What if he puts some crazy hack in there?”
These fools. They’re all crazy hacks. Still, their inability to see that and to chronicle one of the most corrupt and cruelest administrations in history is why Sanders may get her wish to become governor, and after that, God knows what else. It’s not totally surprising. After all, those Bush administration folks who pushed torture and lies to launch a war have done alright for themselves.
But it is angering all the same. It says that no matter how awful any of these people are, they will go unpunished. That their abnormal actions can be sanitized. That none of Trump’s minions will have to reap what they have sown.
And if that is the case for them, how well do you think Donald Trump will do when he leaves office — well, if we can even rid ourselves of him?