Tuesday, February 09, 2021

Legitimate Face-Off

A colloquy between presidential Press Secretary Jen Psaki and Fox News' Peter Doocy about energy policy, especially Keystone XL, provoked a whole raft of tweets from both supporters and opponents of the Administration, though the former were more numerous. Transcript of the entire news conference is here, that of the more significant portion below, and video of the entire exchange between Psaki and Doocy further below..

Q    So how about this: The Laborers’ International Union of North America said the Keystone decision will “cost 1,000 existing union jobs and 10,000 projected construction” jobs.

MS. PSAKI:  Well, what Mr. Trumka also indicated in the same interview was that President Biden has proposed a climate plan with transformative investments and infrastructure and laid out a plan that will not only create millions of good union jobs, but also help tackle the climate crisis.

And as the President has indicated when he gave his primetime address to talk about the American Rescue Plan, he talked about his plans to also put forward a jobs plan in the — in the weeks or months following.  And he has every plan to do exactly that.

Q    But there are people living paycheck to paycheck.  There are now people out of job once the Keystone pipe — out of jobs once the Keystone pipeline stopped construction.  It’s been 12 days since Gina McCarthy and John Kerry were here, and it’s been 19 days since that EO.  So what are these people who need money now — when do they get their green job?

MS. PSAKI:  Well, the President and many Democrats and Republicans in Congress believe that investment in infrastructure — building infrastructure that’s in our national interests, that boosts the U.S. economy, creates good-paying union jobs here in America, and advances our climate and clean energy goals — are something that we can certainly work on doing together.  And he has every plan to share more about his details of that plan in the weeks ahead.

Defenders of the Administration came out in droves, the tweets including:

'Present your data': Jen Psaki smacks down Peter Doocy's gotcha question on Keystone Pipeline jobs

Man, @PressSec came with the damn recipts for Doocy's bad faith question. When you get a heckler at a comedy show, the problem isn’t what the heckler is saying, it’s the nervous, stomach-churning dark energy they bring into the room.

Psaki working on a level or two above Doocy.

This is called "dropping a Doocy."

I’m gonna start calling that feeling a Doocy.

Peter Doocy is clearly a masochist — a normal person would be tired of being smacked down by Psaki on a daily basis by now

Watching Jen Psaki call bs on Peter Doocy is an unrivaled daily pick-me-up.

 "You come for the queen, you better not miss." There is no monarchy in the USA and idolizing someone to the extent of calling her a "queen" should be disturbing.

It should be but it won't, because that's how it is these days. Tweets from critics of the Administration, praising Doocy and blasting Psaki, were about as bad.  

Jen Psaki's response was in fact fairly good. In her final response, she was able to go on for 71 words, effectively denying the mainstream media an opportunity to notice she hadn't answered the question. On Twitter, the left (without a touchdown scored) ignored the issue of energy on environmental policy, instead spiking the football: smacks down; damn receipts; working on a level above a daily pick-me-up; Doocy a masochist; if you come for the queen, better not miss.

Except that Doocy actually asked a well-thought out series of questions about an important topic.  Psaki answered the question in the manner, under the circumstances, she should have. Now that Donald Trump is out of office, reporters should not lay down and act as sycophants to the Administration.  

The response to the practice of the press secretaries of the previous President to avoid questions, insult reporters, and lie to the American people is not to be a stenographer to this one.  Good for Peter Doocy and Jen Psaki; not so good for the partisans who count this as a win or loss for their side.


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