Joe Biden’s new press secretary, Karine Jean-Pierre, is not having a good first week. As Redstate reported on Monday, Fox News’ Peter Doocy managed to stump her on her first day at the podium with a basic question about Joe Biden’s conflation of tax rates and inflation. When it became clear she had no answer, she read from her briefing book about unrelated topics in a vain attempt to filibuster. It wasn’t a good look at all.
On Wednesday, Jean-Pierre slammed into multiple brick walls, making two admissions that I don’t think Biden’s other handlers are going to appreciate very much. The first one involves the idea of violence surrounding the supposedly imminent overturning of Roe v. Wade.
When Doocy (because who else asks tough questions?) pressed her on whether the White House sees violence from pro-abortion forces as a threat, she again attempted to read her briefing book and fell flat on her face.
DOOCY: "Are these threats from pro-abortion activists or anti-abortion activists?"
Karine Jean-Pierre: "It seems like to us that it is very one-sided on what we call out as intimidation or as violence." pic.twitter.com/kEq2PI1fWT
— Townhall.com (@townhallcom) May 18, 2022
There are a few different ways to translate what she’s saying in that clip, and none of them play well for the administration. One possibility is that she’s blatantly lying by asserting that violence and intimidation are “one-sided,” a laughable contention given that leftwing protesters have been trying to intimidate the Supreme Court Justices at their homes for weeks. The other possibility is that she let the quiet part slip out by admitting that the administration is one-sided in what they choose to call out and ignore, or in some cases, endorse.
I tend to think it was a mixture, with Jean-Pierre attempting to blame the right for “intimidation” outside abortion clinics, something that doesn’t happen because it’s illegal and the law is enforced. That then led her into a bumbling answer regarding what the White House chooses to highlight in regards to so-called “extremism.” Regardless, whatever she actually “meant,” it makes the administration look dishonest and grossly political in the face of left-wing violence and intimidation, specifically involving the Supreme Court.
The result of Jean-Pierre’s performance is to once again illuminate just how badly cut out she is for the job she’s been given. While she likes to brag that she’s the first “black, gay, immigrant” to hold her position, those aren’t actually qualifications. This is a person who doesn’t understand public speaking, constantly reading from her briefing book without looking up for long stretches, and who is so obviously not doing the proper leg work to be ready for even basic challenges from the press. Well, I say “from the press,” but I really just mean Peter Doocy.
Another example comes via a question on the stock market, which is currently in free-fall again. Here was her answer.
Karine Jean-Pierre was asked about today's stock market dive and her response was:
"We do not- that's not something we keep an eye on every day."
You know who does keep an eye on the markets every day? People watching their 401k tank faster than Biden's approval.
— Spencer Brown (@itsSpencerBrown) May 18, 2022
The Dow Jones is down around 4,000 points in the last month and the Nasdaq is even worse off. Jean-Pierre’s answer to a softball question on the White House’s reaction is “That’s not something we keep an eye on every day”? That’s an astonishingly cold and unempathetic answer to Americans who are watching their retirements burn to the ground with no end in sight.
But again, Jean-Pierre is just this bad at her job. She’s the Kamala Harris of press secretaries, and that’s not a compliment. At least Jen Psaki was witty and able to successfully misdirect her opponents. By contrast, Jean-Pierre looks like a deer in headlights, desperately clinging to the safety of a briefing book that doesn’t have the answers she needs. Perhaps she’ll improve with experience, but man has this been a rough start.