Home / Politics / Military & Defense / The White House’s conference call on the Iran deal was unusual

The White House’s conference call on the Iran deal was unusual

Donald Trump
States President Donald J. Trump arrives to make remarks and sign
a proclamation to honor Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day in the
Roosevelt Room of the White House in Washington, DC on Friday,
January 12, 2018.

Ron Sachs / CNP

  • A White House’s conference call with the media
    apparently went completely off the rails.
  • The call was to brief media on background before
    Friday’s announcement on the Iran deal.
  • Due to technical difficulties, journalists were
    able to speak to one another and make comments — and they did
    not hold back.

The White House’s conference call with the media before
Friday’s announcement on the Iran deal
apparently went
completely off the rails.

White House officials reportedly did not know how to enable the
“listening only” feature on the call,
to CBS.

The conference call informed media that President Donald Trump
would continue to move forward with the Iran deal, but was
postponed 20 minutes because of the difficulties. During that
time, journalists were able to speak to one another and make

They did not hold back.

One journalist said “This White House can’t even run a
f—ing conference call” because “they don’t know how to mute
their line.”

“This is Kim Jong Un calling for Donald Trump,” said

“Can’t this White House even run a press call?” one
journalist asked.

Administration officials on the call responded angrily to
the taunts. One responded to a journalist, saying, “it’s the
illegitimate media that doesn’t know how to conduct themselves.
They can’t mute their f—ing phones.”

Another administration official, angry at the comments made
by the journalists yelled “I think if everyone had half a
brain and common sense and muted their phones, this wouldn’t be a

No questions were taken at the end of the call, with the
White House blaming technical difficulties.

Donald Trump Steny Hoyer Kevin McCarthy
Donald Trump speaks during a meeting with lawmakers on
immigration policy in the Cabinet Room of the White House,
Tuesday, Jan. 9, 2018, in Washington. From left, Trump, Rep.
Steny Hoyer, D-Md., and Rep. Kevin McCarthy,

AP Photo/Evan

Journalists on the call also aired some of their complaints
on Twitter.

“White House background conference call on Iran is CHAOS,”

Foster tweeted.

“The sound of 100+ unmuted lines waiting for a WH
conference call is half modern art, half torture,” Politico’s 
Crowley tweeted

Others on the call found it amusing.

“The White House Iran conference call going on right now is the
most amazing thing I’ve heard in a longtime,” Radio
Free Europe/Radio Liberty reporter 
Mike Eckel

Even if Khamenei wanted to hack this call, it wouldn’t
sound this bad,” Al-Hayat’s
Joyce Karam tweeted

“I just the hope the person in charge of the phones for the
White House briefing on Iranian today plays no role in looking
are the nuclear codes,” BBC’s
Paul Danahar tweeted

Crosstalk between the media and the administration was not
included on the official White House transcript.

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