Sarah Wins the Prize

By Richard Morris & Eileen McGann

June 20, 2019 3 min read

Sarah Huckabee Sanders has won the all-time prize for surviving, prospering and flourishing in Washington as a member of the Trump administration. Her tenure has been a miracle, and her ability to succeed is unparalleled.

Consider what she has accomplished: She successfully promoted and defended the president to the media even though he was the most hated incumbent chief executive —- by the media — in all of American history.

She survived with her reputation for integrity and honesty in tact, never trying to ease her service by telling the media what it wanted to hear.

And all the while, she retained the backing of perhaps the most fussy president we have ever had. Nobody can match President Donald Trump's record for dismissing his own people. But despite this "off with their heads" mentality that would have shocked even Alice, Sanders stayed on top and kept Trump's support.

Most press secretaries are buffeted between being the president's ambassador to the media and the media's representative in dealing with the president. When the two are on a collision course, as over the years of Sanders' tenure, the task is almost impossible. But she still managed her relationship with the president and the media, keeping the affection and support of the former and winning, at least, the respect of the latter.

She retained her levelheaded demeanor even when bated with the worst of insults. While the media was playing its role in framing the president for the hoax of Russian collusion, she stood her ground — and his. In retrospect, knowing how right she was and how wrong were her tormentors does nothing to diminish our admiration for her skill and balance.

The media wanted to flay anybody they could get their hands on who came from Trumpland. The bodies of almost a hundred public officials attest to this bloodlust. But she won the respect of the natives and navigated their animosity without losing her cool, her virtue or her integrity.

Under fire for two years, Sanders has emerged intact with broad public support and honor. How she did it in front of us at the podium is amazing. How she managed dealing with this demanding president behind closed doors is even more astonishing.

Goodbye, Sarah. Godspeed.

Photo credit: janeannpeters at Pixabay

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