White House press secretary Sarah Sanders defended her colleagues on Tuesday for their controversial handling of domestic abuse allegations against ousted Trump aide Rob Porter, and said the president's communications team is not always as up to date as other officials on sensitive topics.
Porter resigned from his position as staff secretary last Wednesday after facing accusations of spousal abuse from both of his ex-wives. The White House has repeatedly declined to state when exactly President Trump's chief of staff John Kelly was made aware of the allegations, and maintained that Porter was terminated "40 minutes" after he was publicly accused.
That claim has raised several questions in the days since Porter's exit, including whether Kelly misled other staffers about the situation and timing. Politico reported Tuesday that Sanders arranged a meeting for Porter with four national reporters after the news about him broke last week, which led several media outlets to question how he could have been terminated within 40 minutes if he was engaged in a lengthy off-the-record exchange with reporters during that same timeframe.
Asked on Tuesday if she felt that Kelly "misled" her and other White House officials about the allegations against Porter and the timing of his departure, Sanders declined to answer.
"We're simply stating that we're giving you the best information that we're going to have," she said.
"Obviously, the press team is not going to be as read in maybe as some other elements at any given moment on a variety of topics, but we relay the best and most accurate information that we have and we get those from those individuals," she said.
Kelly told the Wall Street Journal earlier Tuesday that his handling of the Porter news "was all done right." His comment came days after deputy White House press secretary Raj Shah said the president's team "could have done better" in its overall response.