President Joe Biden’s administration was supposed to be so transparent, so honest, so open. Why, then, would they need to cheat?
According to Breitbart, White House insiders say Press Secretary Jen Psaki has asked reporters for their questions in advance of press briefings. Still, Psaki has famously dodged even the pres-screened “tough” questions with her irritatingly corporate-speak promise to “circle back” to the issue although she seldom ever does.
Three verified sources and written correspondences reviewed by the Daily Beast revealed that the president’s communications staff has solicited the media to prepare answers beforehand. This has angered reporters as an overreach and antithetical to the role of the press.
The news outlet got wind of the issue after it was raised Friday on an informal White House Correspondents Association Zoom call. “While it’s a relief to see briefings return, particularly with a commitment to factual information, the press can’t really do its job in the briefing room if the White House is picking and choosing the questions they want,” an unnamed White House correspondent reportedly said on the call. “That’s not really a free press at all.”
The White House has admitted that questions were sometimes prescreened, but their excuse was that was in an effort to create a less contentious relationship than President Donald Trump’s administration had with the press. “Our goal is to make the daily briefing as useful and informative as possible for both reporters and the public,” a Biden administration spokesperson said. “Part of meeting that objective means regularly engaging with the reporters who will be in the briefing room to understand how the White House can be most helpful in getting them the information they need.”
While past administrations have done the same with select reporters, it’s hard to imagine the press being so cooperative late in the Trump administration. Reporters like CNN’s Jim Acosta made names for themselves dogging the president to the bitter end.
However, in just the first weeks of Biden’s administration taking over, many in the media have treated the new administration as “boring” to cover. They’ve lobbed softballs like asking about his ice cream stash and fawned over the rescue dogs in the White House.
📸: The First Dogs arrived at the White House Sunday, including Major, the first rescue dog ever to live in the White House.
The Biden family wanted to get settled in the White House before moving Champ and Major from Delaware to Washington, per First Lady Jill Biden’s office. pic.twitter.com/lAhZrD7Dbx
— ABC News (@ABC) January 25, 2021
The media were absolutely vicious and unrelenting when it came to Trump. Their conduct was disgraceful, but yet they’ll allow the Biden administration to ask for their questions in advance and never hold his feet to the fire. If ever there was a modicum of doubt about the political bias of the mainstream media, the first weeks of the Biden administration make it clear: They’re hardcore leftists who take care of their own.