Sean Spicer is now confiscating staffers' phones in a desperate attempt to pretend to appear that this administration can do anything about preventing leaks. Even news of this ham-handed attempt was leaked, which probably just shows how much contempt is out there already.
I'd say this was embarrassing, but then again, everything about this administration has and continues to be a national and international embarrassment.
The White House has had it up to here with leaks. Trump's administration is so fed up with the amount of information being released — unsanctioned — to the media that White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer has allegedly begun conducting surprise phone checks on his staffers, though he has declined to comment on the claim. In an ironic, but not altogether surprising twist, Spicer's most recent attempt to crackdown on leaks was, well, leaked.
Frustrated that information discussed in a communication staff meeting last week had been leaked to the media, Spicer reportedly went into full-blown jealous lover mode. According to a Politico report published on Sunday, the White House press secretary called another meeting with the same staffers. Spicer then allegedly demanded staffers surrender whatever phones and electronic devices they had on them at the time for a random "phone check" reportedly meant to suss out any potential leak culprits. Checks were allegedly done on both staffers' personal and government-issued devices and was overseen by White House lawyers, Politico's sources claimed. Bustle has reached out to the White House for comment.
Spicer also reportedly warned those present in the meeting against using encrypted and confidential messaging apps like Confide or Signal, saying their use was a violation of the Presidential Records Act. Spicer's warning likely stems from reports which surfaced earlier this month claiming Republican operatives and White House staffers had begun using Confide, an end-to-end encrypted and screenshot-protected texting app, to communicate more freely.