CNN’s “Reliable Sources” host Brian Stelter kicked off an interview with White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki on Sunday’s “Reliable Sources” looking for some constructive criticism, asking: “What does the press get wrong when covering Biden’s agenda?” His choice of opening topics rubbed many the wrong way.
Although Psaki didn’t offer specific examples, she did say, “Some of our muscles have atrophied a little bit over the last few years, and there isn’t a lot of memory — recent memory or longer memory — on how long it takes to get legislation forward or how messy the process of negotiating and the process of getting legislation across the finish line can be.”
“So we know, we understand everybody is always looking for a deadline, a timeline, things like that,” she added. “I don’t know if that’s the press getting it wrong. I’ll leave you to the critique of that, Brian.”
Psaki then said, “Sometimes we forget how strange the last four years were, and when we return to a place where democracy is working — where we’re talking with Democrats and Republicans, where we’re trying to get bills and legislation passed — it feels foreign. But this is actually how it’s supposed to work.”
Here’s a clip of the segment, via The Washington Examiner:
Stelter’s opening question drew a few eye-rolls from critics on Twitter. Journalist Glenn Greenwald mocked the interview, tweeting at Stelter: “Nobody is saying Jen Psaki can’t complain about the media (though why would she?). People are just horrified that you had a few minutes to question the spokesperson for the world’s nominally most powerful politician & started with: Jen, tell us how we’re bad and can be better?”
Former Trump White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer got in on the action, too, tweeting sarcastically: “Are we doing a good enough job of pushing the White House’s talking points…can we do better at it?”
Stelter looked to summarize the reaction he was getting, tweeting that liberals were mad at him for asking Psaki why President Biden doesn’t hold more press conferences, while conservatives were “enraged” because he asked what the press gets wrong about the administration.