A Daily Caller News Foundation reporter confronted Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg Tuesday over a train derailment that spilled toxic chemicals in Ohio.
“What do you have to say to the folks in Ohio, East Palestine, who are suffering right now?” DCNF investigative reporter Jennie Taer asked Buttigieg in a video posted on social media.
“Well, I’d refer you to about a dozen interviews I’ve given today, and if you’d like to reach conversation, be sure to reach out to the press office,” Buttigieg said, referring Taer to the comments he made earlier Tuesday and adding that he was taking some “personal time.”
Buttigieg asked if he could take a photo of the DCNF reporter at the end of the video posted on Twitter.
“I guess he didn’t like that so he took a pic of me,” Taer posted on Twitter about the conversation.
I asked Secretary Buttigieg about the crisis in East Palestine and I guess he didn’t like that so he took a pic of me. Im just doing my job, sir. @DailyCaller pic.twitter.com/HjKNgF25FJ
— Jennie Taer (@JennieSTaer) February 22, 2023
“I do think it’s important to speak out about that, and I could have spoken sooner, and I’m making sure that we are focused on the actions that are gonna make a difference,” Buttigieg said in an interview with Reshad Hudson, a Washington correspondent for Nexstar.
Buttigieg announced he would visit East Palestine during a Tuesday interview with Good Morning America co-host George Stephanopoulos, but did not give a timeframe. Former President Donald Trump announced Friday he would visit East Palestine Wednesday.
A train carrying toxic chemicals derailed near East Palestine, Ohio, Feb. 3, prompting evacuations and shelter-in-place orders as authorities moved to address the release of the chemicals.
Buttigieg, a former mayor of South Bend, Indiana, has come under fire for his handling of the derailment, including for not discussing the derailment in public until posting a thread on Twitter on Feb. 13. That same day, Buttigieg expressed concern about the demographics of construction workers.
Buttigieg did not immediately respond to a request for comment from the DCNF.
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