Psaki’s last briefing gets tense after heckler won’t stop interrupting

Former White House press secretary Jen Psaki’s final briefing Friday went off the rails as a frustrated reporter with a foreign newspaper slammed her over her alleged refusal to take questions from the non-establishment reporters sitting in the back.

A video clip from the briefing shows an establishment reporter, Zeke Miller of the Associated Press, trying to ask Psaki a question about the current baby formula shortage when suddenly a reporter starts shouting a question from the back.

“Jen, can I ask you a question from the back?” the reporter, later identified as Simon Ateba of Today News Africa, asks, prompting Psaki’s aide to chide him.

“Simon, please stop,” the aide says.

Instead of quieting down, Ateba begins to argue.

“I understand, but for 15 months you have not …,” he can be heard saying before talked over by the aide.

“Simon, please show some respect to everyone else in the room. Thank you,” the aide says.

Ateba can then be heard finishing his thought: “And I’m saying that for the sake of equity, we should have questions. That’s all I’m saying.”

He then continues speaking as Miller, who this whole time has been trying to ask about the baby formula shortage, tries once more to present a question.

Psaki eventually intervenes by personally chiding Ateba herself.

“Simon, if you could respect your colleagues and media and reporters in here, that would be greatly appreciated,” she says.

But Ateba isn’t impressed.

“No, the biggest — the biggest disrespect is not to have a question for 15 months. That’s what I’m asking you. If you can spread the questions, then all of us at the back will be able to have the questions,” he argues.

The aide then intervenes again, repeating, “Not today. Not today.”

Ateba eventually quiets down and the briefing continues as normal, with establishment reporters being prioritized and non-establishment reporters like Ateba, a minority concerned about “equity,”  being completely sidelined.

The irony is rich, critics say, because this administration has a habit of lecturing Americans about the need for so-called “equity.”

In fairness to the White House, it appears Ateba used to be called upon during White House briefings but was sidelined after he appeared on Fox News’ “Tucker Carlson Tonight” last December to slam the administration for imposing a travel ban on South Africa.

“I think that the travel ban was based on a lie. The president on Nov. 26th banned eight African countries. Only two of those countries had any case of omicron variant. Six of the other countries had zero case of the variant,” he told fill-in host Jesse Watters at the time.

Watters pushed back by noting the Biden administration had cited the guidance of their “scientists” and “experts” to justify the ban.

Again, Ateba wasn’t impressed.

“I believe that any scientist who says you should ban countries that have zero variant and allow countries that have variants to come to the U.S., I believe it’s bad advice, and I think that it seems discriminatory and it almost seems a bit racist,”  he said.

“Can you imagine if the former president, Donald Trump, and I’m not his fan, but can you imagine if he had banned eight African countries, and six of those countries have zero case of the variant? There would have been an uprising.”

Listen:

During another appearance on the show two weeks later, he claimed Psaki had stopped calling on him because of his initial appearance on the program.

“Since I came on your show about two weeks ago, I have not been called on at the White House to ask any question. I’ve raised my hand many times, and I’m not being called on,” he told host Tucker Carlson.

“And coming on your show doesn’t make me left-wing, right-wing or any wing. It doesn’t even make me liberal or conservative or pro- or anti-government. So it’s been really hard since I came on this show,” he explained.

Listen:

According to the New York Post, Ateba has a history of being combative.

“Since covering the Biden administration, Ateba has frequently sparred with Psaki — going as far to accuse her of lying about coronavirus-related travel restrictions in December. … The same month, Ateba accused the restrictions of being ‘racist’ as they targeted southern African countries. The African journalist also has a history of interrupting briefing guests, including Biden’s chief medical adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci,” the Post noted.

The good news is that, following his latest outburst, “Peter Alexander of NBC News said he would voluntarily limit himself to two questions to allow more colleagues to have a turn,” according to the Post.

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Michelle Weber
Michelle Weber
2 days ago

The company quickly stepped out of the fight and stopped publicly commenting on the legislation. Republican lawmakers had reportedly told Disney they may be able to salvage their special administrative district if they stopped sparring with DeSantis, according to the WSJ.

Last edited 2 days ago by Michelle Weber
YoungDuck
YoungDuck
2 days ago

It would be FAR more interesting if one of these journalosers would ask the White House Press liar when they could expect a truthful answer.

Michelle Weber
Michelle Weber
2 days ago

“No, the biggest — the biggest disrespect is not to have a question for 15 months. That’s what I’m asking you. If you can spread the questions, then all of us at the back will be able to have the questions,” he argues.
The aide then intervenes again, repeating, “Not today. Not today.”

Last edited 2 days ago by Michelle Weber
JERRY Leonard
JERRY Leonard
2 days ago

I don’t see the problem. It’s just as easy to make up your own answer as to get the answer made up by the Biden administration for their official mouthpiece.

Laura Hudson
Laura Hudson
2 days ago

All Democraps are liars, sociopaths and pedophiles.

Zuben el Genubi
Zuben el Genubi
2 days ago
Reply to  Laura Hudson

And racists.

Skysoldier1968
Skysoldier1968
3 days ago

It will be interesting to see how Arena and black LGBTQ+ replacement interface.

Buckwhear29
Buckwhear29
2 days ago
Reply to  Skysoldier1968

Is it me or does the Biden “administration” (funny how his cabal of losers is referred to an administration) consist of at least one member from every splinter group in America? This attempt to garner votes by placing at least one person from each splinter faction is a cheap trick and I just hope that American voters see right through it.

Larry Maynard
Larry Maynard
2 days ago
Reply to  Buckwhear29

It’s the Biden Regime they are at war with our country doing everything possible to destroy us. Time we and our dead beat politicians fought back. Republicans should hold rallies at every state capital and DC and much much more. We are under represented by those we elected and depend on to keep our country intact and safe from our enemies not selling us out at every turn.

Wrenchman
Wrenchman
3 days ago

We thought Circle Back Psaki was a prolific liar? Oh, just wait till we all get a load of the next Progressive Propagandist taking the podium!
Democrat Depravity knows no bounds…..

ONLYJB1
ONLYJB1
3 days ago

Mighty WHITE of Alexander.

Kapos
Kapos
2 days ago
Reply to  ONLYJB1

Those gays are mighty generous!

Andrea
Andrea
3 days ago

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Last edited 3 days ago by Andrea

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