Despite the legacy media fawning over new White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre, the early results are anything but positive. For an administration struggling to regain any credibility, this was supposed to be a step forward.
If first impressions mean anything, oh boy.
One the glass ceiling references fade away and serious work begins, it will be interesting to see how Jean-Pierre takes to the new position. As she declared in her opening remarks, “ I am a Black, gay, immigrant woman.”
Kudos to her for rising to her new position, but her’s is one that requires defending the administration to a nation where 79% of the public believes it is racing in the wrong direction. Not to mention having to explain statements like the president’s tweet on May 16.
Biden claimed if we want to bring down inflation, make sure rich corporations pay their “fair share.” After something as economically indefensible as that comes from the White House, any press secretary must expect to be questioned.
The answer, however, was unexpected. First, the new press secretary did not know Biden even made that statement on his official Twitter account. Then it got worse.
In a rambling, sometimes word-for-word from notes response, Jean-Pierre touched on climate change, builders, tax codes, collective bargaining, cops (twice), and everything but an answer. She even doubled down on Biden’s ludicrous claims of deficit reduction. Still no answer.
It hardly stopped there. A reporter asked if a “new level of alarm” exists in the administration as Wall Street continues to plunge. The Dow Jones Industrial Average had just tanked by over 1,100 points.
Jean-Pierre calmly responded that the markets are not something we “keep an eye on,” therefore she would not comment about that “from here.”
One unnamed White House reporter admitted many in the room were “unimpressed.” Jean-Pierre’s predecessor, Jen Psaki, had a reputation for being rather nimble in answering a variety of questions, even when having to defend Biden missteps.
None of this even touches on Jean-Pierre’s long-term relationship with prominent CNN reporter Suzanne Malveaux. So much for objectivity.
History aside, stepping into a prominent role as the president’s spokesperson is a harsh responsibility. Jean-Pierre needs to be up to the task as novelty wears off quickly. Meanwhile, there are serious issues to be addressed.