Jen Psaki Masterfully Shatters Gotcha Questions by Reporters
During a media briefing on Thursday, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki torpedoed a series of ridiculous questions by reporters ranging from President Joe Biden’s joke about Republicans acting like cavemen – to how much credit ex-President Donald Trump should get for his mishandling of COVID-19 – to whether Biden will be donating a portion of his salary.
Vox reporter Aaron Rupar captured the moments and posted them to Twitter.
First, Psaki addressed comments Biden made comparing GOP governors to Neanderthals due to their cavalier ignorance toward science.
“Look, I hope everybody’s realized by now these masks make a difference,” Biden joked, referring to Texas Governor Greg Abbott and Mississippi Governor Tate Reeves – both of whom are Trump-loving Republican conservative extremists – at the White House on Wednesday. “We are on the cusp of being able to fundamentally change the nature of this disease because of the way in which we’re able to get vaccines in people’s arms. The last thing, the last thing we need is Neanderthal thinking, that, ‘In the meantime, everything’s fine. Take off your mask. Forget it.’ It still matters.”
Basically, Psaki said that Republican’s intransigence brought it upon themselves:
The behavior of a Neanderthal, just to be very clear, the behavior of. Look, I think the president – what we saw yesterday – was a reflection of, um, his frustration and exasperation, which I think many American people have, that for almost a year now, people across the country have sacrificed. And many times they haven’t had information they need from the federal government. They haven’t had access to a greater understanding of what the public health guidelines should look like, and those include many many people in Mississippi, in Texas, in Ohio, Florida, in every state across the country.
He believes that with more than half a million Americans’ lives lost, with families that continue to suffer, that it’s imperative that people listen across the country, whether they live in a red state or a blue state, to the guidance of public health experts. At the same time, you’ve watched the president closely for some time as you all have, he’s going to engage with and talk with people who disagree with him on a range of issues including this one. But he believes if we are going to get this pandemic under control, we need to follow public health guidelines. He simply asked the American people to abide by wearing masks for 100 days. We’re at about day 40. Are we at day 40? Around there. Sixty moe days. That’s what he’s asking and he’s certainly hopeful that businesses and people across the country will continue to do that.
Psaki was then asked if Trump’s tragic coronavirus mismanagement should be hailed as a success.
Her response was utter perfection:
I don’t think anyone deserves credit when half a million people in the country have died of this pandemic. What our focus is on, and what the president’s focus is on when he came into office just over a month ago, was ensuring that we had enough vaccines. We are going to have them now. We had enough vaccinators and we had enough vaccine locations to get this pandemic under control.
There’s no question and all data points to the fact that there were not enough of any of those things when he took office. We are open-eyed about the challenge we continue to live under and that’s why he’s been focused every single day and doing everything possible to get the pandemic under control. But there were shortages in all those areas which were preventing us from moving forward on getting the pandemic under control.
Psaki on criticism that Biden isn't giving Trump enough credit for his coronavirus response: "I don't think anybody deserves credit when half a million people in this country have died of this pandemic." pic.twitter.com/kCSLwvBWgR
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) March 4, 2021
Later on, a reporter wanted to know if Biden, who is not a billionaire like Trump, has any plans to donate his presidential salary. It must be noted that Trump and his personal business ventures raked in almost two billion dollars during his term.
“I’m going to have to talk to him about that and get back to you directly or others who are interested,” Psaki replied.
lol what even is this question? pic.twitter.com/FczexsCMzg
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) March 4, 2021