3. SOUNDBITE (English) Sean Spicer, White House Press Secretary:
"Well, I think you guys are well aware of the president's concern about spills of -- of classified and other sensitive information out into the open. It's something that should concern every American. And the president's made it very clear for -- since -- since he took office that that's a big concern of his. And so, the idea that classified information made its way into the press is something that I think, while we're asking all of these questions, is one of the ones that I think the senator should ask. How did that information get -- get out into the -- the open like that? I think that is an equally important question that, frankly, isn't getting asked.
(Reporter question: But did the president believe that Sally Yates was the leaker in this...)
Again, I think the -- the tweet speaks for itself. What he's saying is that the Senate should ask those questions."
4. (Q) Is it a violation of the conflict of interest agreement that Jared Kushner came to?
5. SOUNDBITE (English) Sean Spicer, White House Press Secretary:
"I think I would refer you to the company on that. This had, Jared has done everything to comply with the ethics rules to make sure and that had nothing to do with him per se, he wasn't involved. And secondly, I think we've talked about this before that the president and Congress are looking entirely at how to look over the entire visa program, all the various visa programs, and whether or not they are serving the purpose that they were intended to, whether or not we're making sure that we do what's in the best interest of the American worker and so we're going to continue to work with Congress on that."
6. Wide cutaway of briefing
7. Cutaway of reporter asking question
8. SOUNDBITE (English) Sean Spicer, White House Press Secretary:
(Q) Are you concerned that they're trying to escalate tensions even further. Do you consider these Americans hostages and what are you doing diplomatically, back channel or otherwise, to try to get them released?
Spicer: "Obviously, this is concerning. We're well aware of it and we're going to work through the Embassy of Sweden that has an embassy in North Korea, through our State Department to seek the release of the individuals there but I would refer you to the State Department on that."
White House Spokesman Sean Spicer underscored President Donald Trump's tweet Monday morning that the Senate Judiciary Committee should ask former Acting Attorney General Sally Yates if she knows how classified information was leaked to the media.
Spicer made the remarks at the daily White House briefing shortly before Yates was to testify before the Committee about potential Russian interference in the U.S. presidential election and concerns she raised to the Trump administration about contacts between former national security adviser Michael Flynn and the Russian ambassador.
Spicer said leaks of classified information "should concern every American," but he didn't elaborate about if or why the White House believes Yates was the leaker of classified information.
He was also asked about the sister of Trump's son-in-law, Jared Kushner, courting Chinese investors using a much-criticized federal visa program that provides a path toward obtaining green cards.
Spicer said the incident "had nothing to do with him per se," adding that Kushner has done "everything to comply with ethics rules.
Regarding the announcement by Pyongyang that North Korea has detained another instructor with U.S. citizenship at Pyongyang University of Science and Technology, Spicer called it "concerning," and added that the U.S. is working through the embassy of Sweden to "seek the release of individuals there."
Sweden handles U.S. consular affairs in North Korea, including those of American detainees.