“Former White House photographer has the photos to prove that Obama was the better man – and president. “I’m also trying to correct some of his lies and falsehoods with photographic proof.” ~Pete Souza
Pete Souza known for being non-political
Freelance photographer and former photojournalism professor Pete Souza has served two presidential administrations, working first as the Official White House Photographer for President Reagan and most recently as the Chief Official White House Photographer for President Obama and the Director of the White House photo office during his administration.
Souza is considered by most to be non-partisan with the New Republic writing in 2011 that: “Pete Souza can easily be seen as something of a p.r. man for Obama; however, he’s no partisan acolyte, having previously served as official White House photographer for President Ronald Reagan.”
Souza starts taking aim at Trump
However, all that changed with Trump’s inauguration last year.
As The New York Times reported on April 27th of 2017: “Pete Souza, the former chief White House photographer who became so close to President Obama that he held his wedding in the Rose Garden, is encountering newfound notoriety on social media for a personal Instagram account that has subtly taken aim at President Trump since Inauguration Day.”
With more than 2 million follows on his Instagram account, Souza has gone on to become a powerful – and oftentimes hilarious – voice of resistance to the Trump regime with the publication of his latest book, “Shade, A Tale of Two Presidents,” on October 16, 2018 being the latest effort.
“Shade, A Tale of Two Presidents”
Souza sat down for an interview on CNN‘s “The Lead with Jake Tapper,” which aired on Friday.
"I don't want people to forget the first 500 days of the Trump administration, which is what this represents … I'm also trying to correct some of his lies and falsehoods with photographic proof," says former presidential photographer Pete Souza about his new book, "Shade" pic.twitter.com/6U4cg4FKiE
— The Lead CNN (@TheLeadCNN) November 23, 2018
Tapper started the interview by showing a couple of examples of photos from Shade. Noting that there are “some serious things” that Souza is “saying about the last president and the current one, ” Tappers asked Souza: “What do you want people to take away from the book?”
Souza responded that among other things he wanted to provide “photographic proof” to correct some of Trump’s “lies and falsehoods.”
I don’t want people to forget the first 500 days of the Trump administration, which is what this represents and all the craziness that happened. I’m also trying to correct some of his lies and falsehoods with photographic proof, whether it be the inauguration day crowd, whether it be him saying that Obama did nothing about Russia meddling and here’s the meeting where Obama confronted Putin.
Continuing, Tapper asked Souza if he imagined that he would be using his photographs “as an example” of “how a president should behave.”
“Not at all,” Souza responded, “I never would have expected I would be doing this. If John McCain or Mitt Romney had been president, I wouldn’t be doing this because they respected the Office of the Presidency and that’s what we don’t see from this president.”
Following up, Tapper asked about Souza’s past history of being no-political, and what made him change his approach:
I always thought of you — because I would see you a lot back when you were not the White House photographer, when you were just a regular photographer, news media. And then when you were at the White House photographer, I always thought of you as fairly apolitical, frankly. And I know that you were also the former photographer for President Reagan. And you’ve really, until the Trump Administration, never criticized anyone or said anything political in any way. So what is it about this moment and this president that has — that has changed you?
I think what’s changed me is what I said. I think [Trump] disrespects the Office of the Presidency and he disrespects other people. He bullies people, he lies, he doesn’t — he calls you guys the enemy of the people. He doesn’t believe our own intelligence agencies, he trashes his own attorney general and what he calls his Justice Department. So it’s just — there’s just too many things that is not normal for a president to be doing.