White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham has yet to hold a single briefing since ascending to the position of President Trump’s chief spokesperson, but she has made plenty of time for softball interviews with Fox News.
Since taking the job in July, Grisham has appeared on Fox News or the Fox Business Network at least 13 times, during which she has assailed the press and disparaged critics of the President.
Grisham has also appeared for interviews with other conservative television organizations.
Her first interview as White House press secretary was with Eric Bolling, a host on the Sinclair Broadcast Group, the media organization with local stations that pushes a conservative political worldview in some of its newscasts.
And Grisham has also appeared on One America News Network, a far-right media organization that has a history of peddling conspiracy theories.
The interviews on all these networks have been easygoing, with the hosts and anchors refraining from pressing her. Instead Grisham has been allowed to appear on the channels and push the White House’s talking points mostly unchallenged. Grisham has not appeared on any mainstream television outlets.
Prior to the Trump administration, White House press secretaries would typically brief the press on a daily basis. Grisham’s predecessor, Sarah Sanders, stopped holding daily briefings in March, but would occasionally appear at the podium to take questions. If she continues her current practice, Grisham will be the first press secretary to not hold a single briefing.
As of Monday, it has been 245 days since the last briefing from a White House press secretary.
In an email to CNN Business, Grisham said that she will “hold a press briefing when the President wants me to.”
“That is ultimately his decision,” Grisham said. “The briefings, which are meant to inform the public, were becoming a spectacle.”
“In addition, the President himself answers questions on a weekly basis, as do I and my entire team,” she added. “We’ve also had briefings at the podium with subject matter experts, and to be honest many [in the] press have told me that is more helpful.”
Grisham said that she also appears on radio and engages with print reporters, telling CNN Business, “TV isn’t everything.”
That said, Grisham said that she has “no qualms about appearing on other networks,” though she has avoided appearing on them since taking the job of White House press secretary.
Grisham also told CNN Business that she is “dealing with an illness in my family” and has had to “travel across the country often.”
“It’s unfortunate that I have to explain myself weekly, especially on personal matters,” she said.
CNN’s Allie Malloy and Marina Di Marzo contributed reporting.