There are countless things Sean Spicer ought to be apologizing for at any given time: His unfounded hatred of astronaut ice cream, inability to interpret simple pictures, and utter disregard for copy editors are just a few of them. Accordingly, Trump’s press secretary has issued the occasional mea culpa for a gaffe, though Dippin’ Dots doesn’t appear to have entirely forgiven him. But his latest blunder is too horrific for many to be waved away with one apology. On Tuesday, Spicer incorrectly stated Adolf Hitler had never resorted to chemical warfare. He then tried to fix his mistake with another inaccurate statement—that the Nazi dictator had never used such weapons against “his own people.” And for his final trick, Spicer invented a gross euphemism for death camps, calling them “Holocaust centers,” because again, he doesn’t really seem to understand the English language.
Spicer’s remorse seemed sort of legit when he visited that most hated (by Trump) of news outlets, CNN, to offer an apology. Of course, he immediately asked for recognition of his contrition, proudly telling Wolf Blitzer that he’s the kind of guy who owns his mistakes. The White House press secretary also regrets the possibility that dog-whistling about whether Jews in Nazi Germany were “real Germans” has drowned out Trump’s accomplishments in the past several weeks, which include taking valuable time away from his golf game to order a military strike against Syria. So Spicer spoke with MSNBC’s Greta Van Susteren this morning to express concerns that he distracted from Trump’s war-mongering with a reference to a previous war.
The latest apology touches on the same beats as the previous one, with Spicer’s admission that he has no business talking about things like history ringing out the clearest. But he’s also very worried that his boss is not happy with the way he diminished the atrocities of the Holocaust by suggesting that they weren’t quite as atrocious as what’s going on in Syria. So, Spicer apologized for taking away from Trump’s “message of accomplishment”: “I’ve let the president down…. On both a personal level and a professional level, that will go down as not a very good day for me.” Apparently, the two haven’t even spoken to hash out this latest gaffe, and since Trump only watches Fox News, it might be a while before Spicer’s out of the dog house.