White House counselor to the president Kellyanne Conway on Wednesday was confronted over the termination Kelly Sadler, the former White House communications aide who sparked controversy last monthg when an insensitive remark about Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., leaked to the press.
“Why doesn't Kelly Sadler work at the White House this morning?” CNN “New Day” host John Berman asked.
“I spoke to her,” Conway replied. “She no longer works on this complex and there are a number of open positions throughout the administration for those who wish to submit for them, interview for them andIi think that they match up nicely with different individuals, press and communication skills. In addition I know that Kelly Sadler had a career in the private sector before she came to serve.”
Berman asked if Sadler is out because of her joke that McCain, who’s battling brain cancer, is “dying anyway.”
“I literally cannot comment and I wasn't involved with this specifically, but I will tell you that she no longer works here and I talked to her” Conway replied.
“Is she going to work in the administration?” Berman asked. “Are there other administration jobs open to her?”
“Yes, there are other administration jobs open to her and to others that would like to interview for those jobs. They should submit those,” Conway said.
“In your mind, the comment would not be disqualifying for another administration job?” the host pressed.
“I didn't say that,” Conway protested. Deflecting, she offered that the administration is “very happy, again, that 6.7 million jobs are available to Americans all across the country and that this president has invested considerably in workforce development and apprenticeship programs because that will help people to choose all types of careers.”
“You're not closing the door?” Berman asked. “You're not closing the door to an administration job because of what she said about John McCain, pure and simple, correct?”
“Kelly Sadler has been told there are administration jobs that fit with her skill set and her experience and that the rest is really her choice what she would like to do next,” Conway insisted.
“It would be the administration's choice to rehire somebody who said those things about John McCain—that you can't argue with, right?” Berman asked.
Conway accused Berman of re-litigating something CNN has gone over “many times over the last month,” before again insisting she doesn’t comment on personnel questions she just commented on.
“We're diverting because that's what you do when there's a lot of great news about North Korea summit coming up,” Conway argued.