White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders is known for keeping cool under pressure and always appearing calm and collected no matter how tense the White House press room gets.
But even she couldn’t hide her exasperation with President Donald Trump as he gave an interview to Bloomberg News in the Oval Office.
The interview has been making waves for various reasons, and from the look on Sanders’s face, she may have been expecting as much.
The moment came as the president refused to say whether or not he thought his recently deceased rival, Republican Senator John McCain of Arizona, would have made a better president than Barack Obama, to whom McCain lost the 2008 election.
I think Sarah may be looking forward to the day she gets to testify against Trump. pic.twitter.com/69zEUnUd29
— She persisted (@CaseyHinds) August 31, 2018
Twitter users were quick to speculate just what was going through her head at the time.
she knows he is a lunatic. She should quit while she still has a bit of sanity left.
— weekender (@lovelifetodaypl) August 30, 2018
It’s not surprising that the McCain question, which Trump refused to answer but on which he said he had a “very strong opinion”, would irk Sanders. According to aides, she was the leading force behind the president’s attempts to walk back what many thought were disrespectful and petty reactions to the senator’s death.
— Grant Stern (@grantstern) August 31, 2018
Sarah Sanders had pressed Trump to lower flag, with help of White House Chief of Staff John Kelly, who also reportedly encouraged US leader to sign proclamation to keep flag lowered for McCain. Trump says ‘she had nervous breakdown’ based on his reaction. https://t.co/tMZ0m1NVED
— Murf (@MurfAD) August 31, 2018
It’s reported that Huckabee Sanders drafted the original statement on McCain’s death that Trump refused to give, opting instead for this tweet.
My deepest sympathies and respect go out to the family of Senator John McCain. Our hearts and prayers are with you!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 26, 2018
It’s been reported that Sanders was “99 percent” behind the decision to lower White House flags back to half-staff after they’d been raised not 48 hours after McCain’s death.
However, it hasn’t done much for Sanders’s reputation.
The press secretary is often accused of routinely lying to the press, hindering its function of reporting to citizens the inner-workings of the government that affect us all. Trump’s comments about her “nervous breakdown” haven’t done much for her in terms of public sympathy.
The McCain comments are what upsets Sarah Huckabee Sanders? But the U.S. govt stealing children? Just another day at the office.
— Momma Speaks (@MommaSpeaks) August 31, 2018
are we supposed to feel bad for Sarah Huckabee after the endless lying and general awfulness?
— Lord Longbeard (@js7976) August 31, 2018
— Totally Sassy Ali (@totally_ali) August 31, 2018
Someone get her a tissue…. zero sympathy for Sanders. pic.twitter.com/Izgdn4evac
— NurseMom (@RiseUpAbove) August 31, 2018
The question of how Sanders’s conscience plays into the agendas she champions at the podium has been a popular one. However, she hasn’t always seemed unfazed.
When the White House held a press briefing on Take Your Child to Work Day, one little boy asked Sanders what the administration was doing to make children like him feel safe to go to school. While she insisted that the White House was making moves to do so, her tenacity didn’t hide her tears.
While the White House Press Secretary may have moments of fleeting emotional transparency, her defense of inhumane policies like family separation, for many, negate any sincerity she may show.