President Joe Biden raised eyebrows again on Sunday when it appeared for the second time in about as many days he’s being tightly managed by his administration regarding questions from the media.
As Hurricane Ida smashed into Louisiana and last week’s deadly attack on U.S. troops outside the international airport in Kabul remained in the headlines, Biden, during a visit to the headquarters of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), ended an address by telling Bloomberg News’ senior White House reporter Jennifer Jacobs, “I’m not supposed to take any questions, but go ahead.”
Jacobs began, “Mr. President, on Afghanistan…”
Biden immediately interjected, “I’m not gonna answer on Afghanistan,” before banging his hand on the podium and turning away from Jacobs.
“I’m not supposed to take any questions, but go ahead,” @POTUS told me at FEMA HQ. I asked if there's still an acute risk at the Kabul airport. “I’m not going to answer on Afghanistan,” he said. pic.twitter.com/fZ8WL9gfWI
— Jennifer Jacobs (@JenniferJJacobs) August 29, 2021
Biden calls on a reporter following remarks about #HurricaneIda and the reporter asks him about his disaster in Afghanistan.
Biden immediately states he doesn't want to talk about Afghanistan and walks away. 13 U.S. troops were killed after a chaotic situation Biden caused. pic.twitter.com/mmNPlpciLZ
— Curtis Houck (@CurtisHouck) August 29, 2021
Thursday evening, following the deadly suicide attack in Kabul that left 11 Marines, two U.S. Army soldiers, and a Navy corpsman dead, Biden gave an address to the nation in which he vowed to retaliate against the responsible party, said to be ISIS-K, an Islamic extremist group not aligned with the Taliban.
When he finished, Biden said he was “instructed” to call on certain reporters.
“Ladies and gentlemen, they gave me a list here. The first person I was instructed to call on was Kelly O’Donnell of NBC,” he said.
Following his FEMA presser and quick dismissal of Jacobs, social media users ripped into Biden for refusing to answer despite the storm surge in Louisiana, given that the situation in Afghanistan on Sunday was equally chaotic, with rocket attacks, drone strikes, and a controversial report that a U.S. missile may have killed an Afghan family, including six children.
“Biden calls on a reporter following remarks about #HurricaneIda and the reporter asks him about his disaster in Afghanistan. Biden immediately states he doesn’t want to talk about Afghanistan and walks away. 13 U.S. troops were killed after a chaotic situation Biden caused,” Curtis Houck, managing editor of Newsbusters, tweeted.
“Wonder if Joe knows that one can walk and chew gum at the same time,” he said in a follow-up tweet, adding: “I can’t believe it has to be said — #HurricaneIda is a dangerous storm and the people of the Gulf Coast matter. As president, you’re elected to multi-task.”
— Curtis Houck (@CurtisHouck) August 29, 2021
“What did he say when you asked why he’s not supposed to take any questions, and by whose order? If you didn’t ask, why not?” conservative columnist Jim Treacher responded.
“Maybe a good follow-up for an actual journalist is, ‘Who then does the president take orders from?'” another user wrote.
“Question: is the appropriate time not while women and children are being raped in murdered in Afghanistan? Should we wait until after they’re done getting killed for going to school?” replied conservative editor John Willow.
“Someone really wrote this: ‘He was nice enough to take a question,'” Wisconsin GOP congressional candidate Derrick Van Orden added. “What on earth has happened to Americans? He is the president responsible for the worst foreign policy debacle in the history of our nation and he was “nice enough to take a question? Stand up, Americans!”
Someone really wrote this: “He was nice enough to take a question”.
What on earth has happened to Americans?
He is the president responsible for the worst foreign policy debacle in the history of our nation and he was “nice enough to take a question?
Stand up, Americans! pic.twitter.com/JZ7ia105gp
— Derrick Van Orden (@derrickvanorden) August 29, 2021
Can we talk to whoever it is that tells him what he is supposed to do and not do?
— Chris DeMuth Jr (@ChrisDeMuthJr) August 29, 2021
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