Sanders won't answer direct question on Stormy Daniels payment

White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said the president has already won arbitration, calls White House a "very functioning place of business."
13:53 | 03/07/18

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Transcript for Sanders won't answer direct question on Stormy Daniels payment
Hey there and welcome to the briefing here of on the ABC news political director Rick Klein joined here by Katherine folders and Jordan felt some are or White House team so. I like conflict the president said yesterday hours later. He's got more conflict that he can possibly hope Gary Cole and Al the big staffing move liberally noose is that moves markets guys I mean that I hope I'm that important Sunday. But it that you can you could create a stock market rally or sell off base and your very presence inside a job or not he's gone after all the stuff. They're theaters they you know it's not have normal app business turnover. But in fact he's very abnormal for their eat this much turnover in the first year. The White House it please act crippling turnovers on his administration. Double talker rate and I'm so clearly a lot of chaos they are out and you mention anything exclude Catholics but not. Chaos to him means that you did the other day that his narrative is often of course hours after that week he lost them. Gary kind of who was also ahead as he gets you thinking about I'm resigning in the wake of the Charlottesville comments that the study says yes and that briefing. You know if this is a chaotic how do you do find chaotic and as you saw your fingers dodges questions and got into him. She said we've had in this storm first year we continue to do that great thinking that got and that night since then and everything house. And I find handing. And she called it very functioning place of business you you're over there all time. He does it you have the sense that this is a quote barely functioning with the business right now given all that the movement and some of the policy of our vehicles that the times. You know hotline. Former White House officials on the yesterday crazy time it looks like it's getting even crazier now pretty much sums it up we. There have been kind of a stabilizing carry it in this White House and we're seeing kind of hinges come off again. The press staff are hurt in intact with its been more of their days. You know behind closed doors not accessible. To eat yet there's a lot of shake up going on air and it definitely tripled down our model. Emma there's also uncertainty right when when the president tweaks that and more people make Allen also has White House for speaking men is that median and I mentioned yesterday but as somebody is semi messes it says it displaces starting to fill up like the apprentice you know we we don't numbers next selves about the bachelor ever. You don't want to be at least not now compared to that today. But it does as I mentioned that policy ramifications we've seen watching the markets there's a lot of conservatives if it massive sell off doesn't seem to happen. At least not yet heartbeat to handicap but it's tied to this issue of tyrants the Gary clones line in the sand was tariffs against their bad idea. President has made clear he is going to it to move forward with the tariffs we don't know exactly when we're going to see that specifically we've gotten some indications. It also seems that the try to soften a little bit again today her from the White House that the maybe some parked outside a case by case basis particularly for our neighbors here in North America. Yeah and outlaw act is not unexpected right because the president is the one who plowed ahead with making this announcement last week in the administration was not ready to make that announcement he's tears. We're not ready now. You know that it expects to grow this week but. Of course is what the issue victory come decided I'm gonna fall on the sword over. I because he's argument all along that this is free first the positive impact that these tax cuts that pat. I'm hits and he's not there even though the president's sex life to city in his. In his White House during come stuck his neck out in disagreement the president on this and now he's got the. He's not it is I think opinions inside the White House he used capital right now I I was struck by this given what's at times were people on the hill are saying I don't agreement is from the president. Usually though it's about public statements personality things. I don't remember policy issues that Republicans lining up as much as they have for Mitch McConnell Paul Ryan right on novelists say Mr. President don't do this this is bad idea. He had the respect from Republicans from his own party. I'm on Capitol Records is quite strong in and a lot of that Republicans mansion client particular. They fear a trade war. And eat the president back to work on out has been striking he says trade wars are good things that and Patrick Wirth and yesterday he was Bakken. Back saying that street Louis you know might not be nothing I don't have pushed back is suspect but he doesn't seem to keep botching. So much on this except for in the hedging a little bit on the country's. So this very policy in place of business is getting a little less populated meeting by the gate here ABC news reporting today that there are several other departures that are of their imminent Europe may be lower level people. Later they should secure. This came up. During the rob border incidents a couple of weeks back it was highlighted by the fact that don't trust her losses appearances Jarrett is still there he's in Mexico today. Having a meeting there but we are learning there are several people that are losing their jobs and lower level because it they had. There isn't surprised yeah you know Katherine has a lot of the great reporting honest but now it's not surprisingly know that Kelly decided to clamp down on. And this is really an unexpected sight is this telling is that's telling eighty it's a reaction to Kelly's mental that he issued in the wake of the AM. We're supporters in the rights of these these departures and that we're learning about as you mention are are lower level but. Other people who are being terminated or reassigned more issues related to their security clearances so. I would not be totally unexpected we also expect that more people. Edu perhaps may be gone by the end of the week but it definitely reaction to his. OK and that next up today's stories backs are mcdaniels back in the news not just because she continues. Headline. Gentlemen's clubs openings but because of an oven and a new a new pieces of information that's come out now which is a lawsuit. She is doing for what she's pleased as. The confidentiality that it doesn't apply there's that blank dean a suited him and the president and the presidential signature. That there was never applied to that. You guys hurts our standards there she was asked directly by. Courtroom shortly before college definitely a moment ago did the president know about this page did he authorize and we didn't get that once again. Yeah he hurt Sarah they're saying that. The president specifically has denied the allegations but would she want to answer was whether had. Knowledge of this 130000. Dollar payment. Work might get off rice Michael Collins me get so it's interesting question after question hasn't posted here on this on this topic and it she just answer this. It's a separate opinion from the city they destroyed us for the White House wanted to say I want to go back to the issuer does talk about I'd love this quote. Very functioning place of business. So you just left the you're not do you not agree with that brick hunted. I don't know I just got back from a to call my workplace are now very comforting place of business that's a new thing it that I don't think you can to have does that dazzle people. But my goodness I meaty the president says he likes conflict we've been talking here about the difference between conflict and chaos. What's your read of this I mean Gary Cohen leaving markets moving all of these staff changes it doesn't feel very. And now I mean Ellis goes on such as condit's it's hope hicks its key Schiller it's so many of the president's. Up close close personal friends and aides who who are now Klein and and I was really struck right one caveat Sarah Sanders answered to me today I was asking her about this issue White House turmoil which of course they deny that there is any turmoil here. She says Americans elected president trump. To be the leader and and they did there is no argue with that but this is a president as are all presidents who needs. Confidant who needs an inner circle who needs. Loyalists and allies and the circle of those people here in the west wing by the day it's shrinking and shrinking dramatically. And I think the real question facing this White House going forward is. Can they function can they govern. They do the business that they have to do. In the midst of all these distractions there's just no way to argue that these are not distractions and most of the briefing today. Was consumed by questions about whether the president. At that basic a level of these questions most of this White House briefing today was consumed by questions about whether the president has had an affair with porn star. If that's not a distraction I don't know what is. I would agree with that I think that's a fair assessment Cecilia but. I'm Gary Cohn is he going to be the last ago I'm that's kind of a loaded question a leading question Cecilia but but what it was a single to you. That Gary Conn decided this is the moment where enough is enough I can't take this anymore he was a guy that had a lot of stature. In that west wing the president respected him because of the success at Goldman Sachs he's gone what kind of where does that leave well. It leaves a void in what Matt you know bid though the role prescribed to Gary Cohn here in this White House is. Was sort of that stabilizing. Voice inside the west wing he was. The counter to a lot of the policies in this White House about the president's. Very laudatory. A statement about Gary Cohn there and so. All the record they're delivering niceties to each other and Gary Collins released his opening statement as well saying that it was an honor privileged to serve in this administration. I don't doubt that both of those men believe those two things. Behind the scenes though we know that Gary Cohn has been very upset he was upset about the president's comments in Charlottesville. He thought the trade war fight and lost and now he is out the president said this is very much the type of controlled chaos that he likes to see two sides. Can have a conflict. Fight it out in front of him and that's how he makes his decisions I think there is a method. To what many say would be madness in that and that is certainly president trumps way of governing. The problem is there isn't and now know. There's no counter voice inside this west wing if the president wants to see two sites I don't know who fills that void that Gary Cohn is leading piping and asked if this is going to be the last one out. The only thing I can tell you that I know for sure a year and I happen to my job here Rick. Is that I cannot predict what is going to happen in the next two hours and both of the women standing there right Eckstein who worked with me every day in his right how could face the exact same thing. Guys are whipped it out on the bulls calls here all right so you there's there's a very functioning place of business right behind you can get back inside. Get back to that figure you know you be on world news tonight a couple hours expects the sale I got. I want to move on guys the politics my favorite my favorite topic always there is in the show and asking you don't look. Season is upon us Texas happened yesterday and oh all I want about a couple of quick thoughts of you guys Democrats had a very good night. Record turnout Texas Buckley you know historians Republicans. Actually had we more turnout. And more than that because we're talking by the president here president's coattails were all of the candidates up without a doubt that he endorsed. Won their primaries that for me stupid a lot of Republican politics. Outlook and it is also in taxes week we should throwing out there and that presents a has broad appeal there that we should. Note that you haven't president does still have. You know that glimmer in his eye when he gets up on C police opposite seat packing they're in through the red meat and the crowds still loved it he still has. That Keogh and you know we've seen him defy the odds over and over again. We'll see if Tony teens another year for that we know that the White House is eating. Take kind of at Bok the historical trend to meet here mid term year losses for them. I thank you note that it Democrats definitely have some traction this year so we'll have to. If I'm White House political operation I am pointing to two beat teams yesterday once had Cruz who has been very close the president for clashing with him so publicly and so. So blatantly during during the primary campaign he has full want more for trial he cruised to it is his victory no real concerns there and more interesting than that. Man George P. Bush. Low energy says its own son he decided to endorse trump trump endorsement back and he coast past the primary challenger to and he is able to. The probably closer to re election as Texas like. Tell anything he hit exactly these these are our hot spots especially when you think about. The buses that the crew the the road ready do you think about. Or isn't during the campaign it is actually Vincent is that it's definitely an elected president we know that he'll be. A central figure in the isn't internal actions Jordan yachts and he's talking about but he is he did seem a little worried that seat back when he was spent the majority of its kind are is time. Saying get out and vote knew he was worried about turnout says. Study were at a Pennsylvania nicely on the trail Joseph Biden was just there yesterday the other beat Texas headline. The heat wave is starting to exit to make itself known. Women female candidates in more than half of the Texas congressional districts a lot of firsts are starting to pop up against Texas as you point out. Moderates they almost as red as Jordan's C a and aren't that doesn't have to worry for today's show guys any quick thoughts that you want to equally earlier. Yeah you know client is thinner people let's assume it said because it's so true that you hearing Eric it's only Wednesday. Ahead in the Bible and I don't let this daily tablet we felt like it was. Friday so he really just can't predict it anymore and no you sure Hank and that. But I'm left with is stormy the end yes there were quite a few questions and speech freaking out topic. But this happened becoming a full blown scandal you know like Monica Lewinsky sort of situation which just goes to show. That this is an unexpected story line effort in this White House anymore. You know we've seen so many allegations. And you know stories about the president's sexual relations but it's really not all that surprising anymore and it's not taking up as much oxygen is as you think. It might. In in this sort of situation. Hamas and number. Believe that's it. Arrogance and so. All right that's our addition to the of the reviewer for today please download the ABC news that he wants us all the time at And we look back right here next time with the briefing room.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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