When reporters team up, better journalism ensues. This refreshing clip shows why.

Something strange happened at the White House on July 18.

OK, I guess I'll need to be a bit more specific, as there's a lot of strange stuff happening over at 1600 Pennsylvania these days: Something strange happened during the daily White House press briefing between two journalists from competing news outlets.

NBC's Hallie Jackson was asking Press Secretary Sarah Sanders about President Donald Trump's inconsistent answers on the topic of Russian election interference.


During his July 16 summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin, Trump said that he didn't "see why [Russia] would have" interfered in the 2016 U.S. election. The following day, though, he walked that back, claiming that he meant to say "wouldn't." But on July 18, a reporter asked whether he believed Russia is trying to hack the 2018 election, to which he responded "no," contradicting his intelligence advisors. Later, the White House tried to walk back that "no."

It was all very confusing, so it was reasonable that reporters might have a few questions about it.

"Why should this president have any credibility to Americans in what he says if, in fact, 24 hours later — or in this case, three hours later — the White House comes out and says, 'Just kidding'?" asked Jackson.

Jackson trying to ask Sanders her question. Photo from White House/YouTube.

As press secretaries (in this administration, as well as previous ones) have a tendency to do when backed into a corner on a question they might not have the answer to, Sanders offered a quick response to Jackson and called on another reporter before she got any follow-up questions.

This time, though, it didn't work. A journalist from a competing outlet threw the question back to Jackson. It was remarkable.

"I'm going to keep moving. Jordan, go ahead," Sanders said, calling on Jordan Fabian, a reporter at The Hill.

All GIFs from White House/YouTube.

Jackson persisted, but once again, Sanders cut her off and threw the question over to Fabian.

And once Fabian got it? He gave it right back to Jackson.

Journalism is an extremely competitive industry — but every once in a while, reporters join together in solidarity to advance the underlying goal of obtaining information.

Earlier in July, people wondered whether the tradition of setting aside professional competition for the sake of ensuring an equal and free press — this is exactly why the White House Correspondents Association came into existence — had fallen by the wayside. During a July 13 joint press conference with British Prime Minister Theresa May, Trump waved off CNN's Jim Acosta, saying, "I don't take questions from CNN. CNN is fake news. John Roberts of Fox. Let's go to a real network. John, let's go." Roberts did, frustrating his colleagues.

A number of media personalities chimed in to note that when the Obama administration expressed irritation with the way Fox covered them, they were there to come to Fox's defense.

In response to that criticism, the Trump administration cancelled a planned appearance by National Security Advisor John Bolton on CNN's "State of the Union," citing the network's "disrespect" for the president. This tactic of withholding access to encourage more favorable coverage can only work if other media outlets let it. On July 15, ABC's Jon Karl pressed Bolton on that exact issue, a big win for journalistic solidarity — something that clearly carried over to the July 18 press briefing.

The professional courtesy exhibited between Jackson and Fabian should be the norm.

All politicians and all administrations lie. The Trump administration, however, is in a league of its own. Trump has told more than 2,000 individual public lies since becoming president, according to a Toronto Star report. Trump then acts as though he's being disrespected when a journalist does their job and calls him on it.

For the sake of the truth, here's hoping that journalists continue to stick up for one another.

Watch the full exchange below (starting at about 16:33).

Wear your values with products from PSA Supply Co., an independent site owned by our parent company, GOOD Worldwide Inc. GOOD makes money when you buy these products, and 10% of profits go to The Center for Community Change Action. Use discount code UPWORTHY to get 15% off your first order!
More
BXGD / Flickr and Cody Bondarchuk / Twitter

Sometimes the smallest gesture can turn your entire day around. You find a $5 bill in the pockets of your jeans. There's no traffic on the way home from work. Or by some divine intervention, you get 11 chicken McNuggets in your 10-piece box.

Of course, if you've ever had such a blessing, you know your first thought is, "Must be some sort of mistake."

But do you return the extra McNugget? Nope. You don't even feel an ounce of guilt for it. You dunk it in barbecue sauce and relish it like a gift from the gods.

A former McDonald's employee in Edmonton, Canada let the world know that sometimes an extra McNugget is not a mistake and he's become a viral hero.

Keep Reading Show less
popular
terimakasih0/Pixabay

When Iowa Valley Junior-Senior High School principal Janet Behrens observed her students in the cafeteria, she was dismayed to see that they spent more time looking down at their phones than they did looking at and interacting with each other. So last year, she implemented a new policy that's having a big impact.

Keep Reading Show less
popular
Facebook / Cierra Brittany Forney

Children in middle school can be super shallow when it comes to fashion. To be part of the in-crowd, you have to wear the right shoes and brand-name clothing, and listen to the right music.

The sad thing is that kids that age can be so creative, but they're forced into conformity by their peers.

Some people never escape this developmental phase and spend their entire lives wasting their money on material goods and judging those who do not or can not.

Keep Reading Show less
popular

They say that kids say the darnedest things, and seriously, they do. Anyone who has spent any significant amount of time with young children knows that sometimes the things they say can blow your mind.

Since teachers spend more time around little kids than anyone else, they are particularly privy to their profound and hilarious thoughts. That's why NYC kindergarten teacher Alyssa Cowit started collecting kid quotes from teachers around the country and sharing them on her Instagram account, Live from Snack Time, as well as her websiteand other social media channels.

Keep Reading Show less
popular