President Joe Biden continues to dodge media questions this week in response to the humiliating disaster in Afghanistan, not that you’d know it from the White House.
White House communications director Kate Bedingfield was being interviewed on friendly MSNBC early Friday when she was asked by host Willie Geist if Biden would be taking questions at any point in the day.
Her response was typical of an administration that more and more appears to exist in its own world, outside the realms of reality.
“The president never shies away from taking questions,” Bedingfield replied. “I’ll let him make the decision if he’s going to take questions this afternoon. But you saw he just did a full sit-down interview on this just yesterday. So, he’s always willing to take questions and I’ll let him decide if he’s going to do that after his remarks today.”
WH Comms Director Kate Bedingfield: “The president never shies away from taking questions.” pic.twitter.com/KNkSqyCgtU
— America Rising (@AmericaRising) August 20, 2021
Biden is expected to speak later Friday at the White House, as he is mired in a foreign policy crisis over bungling the U.S. exit from Afghanistan.
After reading scripted remarks earlier this week, Biden walked away from reporters as they shouted questions at him — on the few occasions he has taken reporters questions since being in office, he’s been quick to suggest he might “get in trouble” for doing so.
According to Fox News, the president will give an update “on U.S. evacuation efforts amid the unraveling situation in Afghanistan,” where 10,000 or more Americans are still trapped in Kabul.
As for those evacuation efforts, there is further humiliation amid reports that the U.K. and France are running military patrols into Kabul to get their citizens — the Brits are getting Americans too in some cases — while the U.S. is telling its citizens to get to the airport surrounded by the Taliban on their own.
Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin said Wednesday, “I don’t have the capability to go out and extend operations currently into Kabul.”
Turns out, other than reading the words someone puts on the teleprompter, Biden is apparently opting to employ the same strategy he ran in the 2020 election, hide out in his basement while the media campaigned for him — the problem being, those ranks have thinned noticeably in the face of the catastrophe in Kabul.
Of course, Biden did sit down this week with ABC News George Stephanopoulos, the former Clinton advisor, in a widely panned interview, with the White House seemingly thinking this would placate those calling on the president to answer questions on the situation in Afghanistan.
After that interview, former CBS White House correspondent Mark Knoller did a comparison of interview opportunities with the last two White House occupants and the results speak for themselves.
By my count, Pres Biden today sat for his 9th news interview, his 2nd with @GStephanopoulos.
Compares with predecessors at same point in presidency:
Trump: 50 interviews
— Mark Knoller (@markknoller) August 18, 2021
The response to Bedingfield’s stretch of reality was what you might expect, with perhaps the best response coming from the GOP’s Matt Whitlock: “This… is the strategy? More lying?”
This… is the strategy? More lying? https://t.co/YCap1T4OJY
— Matt Whitlock (@mattdizwhitlock) August 20, 2021
Here’s a sampling of other responses to the story from Twitter:
— Mark Ashworth (@marklarflash) August 20, 2021
I mean the chutzpah of these people. pic.twitter.com/pAPvhxYycs
— Izengabe (@Izengabe_) August 20, 2021
What in tarnation https://t.co/7EMJ3ClXlT
— Kassy Dillon (@KassyDillon) August 20, 2021
Come… Come again? https://t.co/3WSpdEtl5n
— Joe Concha (@JoeConchaTV) August 20, 2021
I’m calling an early lid so I can spend the rest of the day laughing at this: https://t.co/lWU3zei58q
— Doug Powers (@ThePowersThatBe) August 20, 2021
I’m sorry, I’m having a hard time seeing you with all of this GASLIGHTING https://t.co/Ng3wM9FNiv
— Jim Geraghty (@jimgeraghty) August 20, 2021
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