White House fumes at reporters’ focus on Stormy Daniels

White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders ripped reporters on Tuesday for their focus on Stormy Daniels as she fielded multiple questions about why President Trump has not addressed allegations that he had an affair with the adult-film actress.

{mosads}Reporters peppered Sanders with questions about whether Trump knew about a $130,000 payment from his attorney, Michael Cohen, to Daniels to not talk about the alleged affair and why the president has remained silent on the matter.

Sanders referred questions about the payment to Cohen, who has said he paid out of his own pocket and was not reimbursed and that the president and campaign did not know about the payment.

“I don’t think it’s silent when the president has addressed this, we’ve addressed it extensively, there’s nothing else to add,” Sanders said. “Just because you guys continue to ask the same question over and over and over again doesn’t mean we have to come up with new things to say. We addressed it. We addressed it extensively and there’s nothing new to add to this conversation.”

Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, accepted the $130,000 payment and signed a nondisclosure agreement with Cohen shortly before the 2016 election, agreeing not to talk about the alleged affair.

But after The Wall Street Journal reported on the payment earlier this year, Daniels and her attorney sought to get out of the agreement to allow her to talk.

That effort culminated in a “60 Minutes” interview on Sunday night in which Daniels laid out for the first time the details of an alleged sexual encounter with Trump in 2006.

The White House has said Trump denies the affair took place.

On Monday, White House deputy press secretary Raj Shah pointed to statements Daniels had released this year in which she said an affair did not take place. She has since said she was “forced” to sign those denials under threat of legal action.

The president, who is known to attack his political enemies over Twitter, has not publicly responded to the interview.

Sanders said Tuesday that the president is too busy to respond to all of his critics.

“I didn’t say he punches back on every single topic,” Sanders said. “If he did, he would probably be addressing a lot of the stories that you guys write every single minute of the day. He has a job to do and a country to run, and he’s doing a great job with that. That’s why the economy is booming, [the Islamic State in Syria and Iraq] is on the run, we’re remaking the judiciary and pushing his agenda through. Sometimes he chooses to punch back and sometimes he doesn’t.”

A reporter from the Christian Broadcasting Network asked Sanders to respond to a statement from former President Carter, who said Americans want a president with “basic moral values.”

“I think the people of this country came out by the millions to support Donald Trump, to support his agenda and the policies that he’s pushing forward,” Sanders said. “He has been delivering day in and day out on that front. He’s kept a number of his campaign promises. That’s only been within the first one and a half years.

“I think the people that voted for and came out and supported him still do so and do so because they believed in the agenda that he was driving and he’s been delivering on that since he came into office.”

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