Marsha Blackburn's advice for Trump team: "Be very judicious" with your words

Rep. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., with Major Garrett and Steve Chaggaris, May 18, 2017.

CBS News / Nicole Sganga

On "The Takeout" podcast this week, Rep. Marsha Blackburn said the president and his team need to change their ways, in order to avoid continuing to create self-inflicted controversies.

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Blackburn said she's concerned "that there seems to be a lack of structure and discipline," regarding the serial controversies currently swirling around the Trump White House. Blackburn, who was a vice chair of the Trump transition team after the election, was responding to Tennessee GOP Sen. Bob Corker's comment earlier in the week that the White House is "in a downward spiral right now."

Blackburn suggested the president's political opponents are relentlessly working against him, and the White House isn't doing itself any favors with its lack of decisive strategy and communication.

"With as much as is coming at this team, and there I do think that they have to realize that many in the media and many on the other side of the aisle are not going to work with them, and they do have to realize that there are those that served in previous administrations who maybe do not wish them success. And because of that, they have to approach each day as saying 'let's not give them something to talk about. Let's not make news by our process. Let's be very judicious about what we choose to say,'" she said.

Blackburn feels that in this case, change needs to come from the top, and Vice President Pence and President Trump need to exert some control.

"I do think that it is time for the president and the vice president to put the team in the huddle and say, 'Okay, you know, anybody who's talking out of school, cut it out,' she continued.

As for Mr. Trump's preferred mode of communication, Blackburn added, "Would I be tweeting? No."

For more from Blackburn's conversation with CBS News Chief White House Correspondent Major Garrett and CBS News Political Director Steve Chaggaris, listen to "The Takeout" podcast, available on iTunesGoogle PlayStitcherSpotify and And follow "The Takeout" on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter: @TakeoutPodcast.

Producers: Arden Farhi, Nick Fineman, and Katiana Krawchenko


Twitter: @TakeoutPodcast

Instagram: @TakeoutPodcast


  • Steve Chaggaris

    Steve Chaggaris is CBS News' senior political editor.