The Clown Show Is Back! Feinberg, Karem, Ryan Make Waves in Return to Briefing Room

June 8th, 2021 12:14 PM

The White House Briefing Room returned to full capacity for Monday’s Psaki Show and with that, Trump era carnival barkers such as Breakfast Media’s Andrew Feinberg, Playboy’s Brian Karem and The Grio's April Ryan made sure to have seats. Along with fellow far-left reporter Yamiche Alcindor of PBS, they bashed former President Trump and trumpeted the disastrous For the People Act.

National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan made a guest appearance at the start and Ryan was there to lob softballs with her first question complaining that Russian President “Vladimir Putin has already smeared [President Biden’s] name” and then suggesting passing the For the People Act was a necessity to national security.



Ryan wondered:

[I]f [the For the People Act] is not passed, what is the national security issue with it? Is their national security issue with it if it's not passed? Because we've heard so much over the past few years about issues of voting. If that is not passed, is it a national security issue?

If you listened to the liberal media, you’d think H.R. 1/S. 1 was some sort of election reform package to ensure voting systems aren’t hacked in the same way that Colonial and JBS were, you’d be sorely mistaken.

Alcindor came next with what Becket Adams said was the latest from “the White House press corps’s most useless reporter” (click “expand”):

ALCINDOR: Thank you so much. My question is, can you talk a bit about how President Biden plans to convince — especially our European allies — that President — former President Trump was an anomaly in some ways, all of the things that he did in some ways, traumatized both leaders, calling into question the need for NATO. What's the plan there and is concern that those scars are gonna be deeper than his ability to address them in this one trip?

SULLIVAN: I think our view going into this trip is that actions speak louder than words and that showing that the United States is capable of turning the corner on the pandemic, showing that the United States is capable of making the dramatic investments that will pull us up and out of this economic recovery and help our global growth, showing the world that we are ultimately capable of making the investments in R and D, infrastructure innovation, and workforce, ultimately setting that foundation for this country will be the most effective way to show the rest of the world that the United States has the power and purpose to be able to deliver as the world's leading democracy, 


SULLIVAN: So that's what he's going to try to demonstrate and he, as I said at the outset, feels he goes into this from a position of strength because of the record he's built up over the course of the first four months.

Alcindor also picked up Ryan’s question about the far-left elections proposals being of the utmost importance to keep Americans safe:

[C]an you talk a little bit — is Congress being briefed on the idea of voting as a national security issue. And the For the People Act isn't passed, what will that say globally, given the fact that you just laid it out of the national security issue?

Karem followed his fellow clown car occupants on the Trump bashing, lamenting that “[t]he biggest concern of some of our allies has been, over the last four years, and even before, just the rapid swing back and forth of our foreign policy” and so he wanted to know “what will you tell our allies that, despite what we've seen in the past, that we have returned to normal.”

Unsurprisingly, Real Clear Politics’s Philip Wegmann asked a real question, wondering what Sullivan meant earlier this year when he said the U.S. rejoining the World Health Organization would mean “holding it to the highest standards” and what specifics would it entail.

Moving to the Psaki Q&A, more liberal reporters continued the push on H.R. 1/S.1 with questions.

Along with the AP’s Josh Boak asking whether opposition from Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) was “untenable because the state level changes being pushed by Republicans,” The Washington Post’s Tyler Pager lobbed a softball on the narrative that failure to pass the legislation would make “the midterms....quite difficult” for Democrats cause it would ostensibly be rigged by Republicans.

Ryan eventually got her turn with Psaki and she focused entire on voting and trying to will a change from Manchin into existence.

Just like with Wegmann in Sullivan’s portion, Fox’s Peter Doocy decided to show up with excellent questions about holding China accountable and Biden not speaking or tweeting about D-Day (click “expand”):

DOOCY: On COVID-19 origins, China has basically already said they think their part in an international investigation is done. So why is Jake Sullivan still here, saying he thinks it's possible that they're going to provide the preliminary data at some point? 

PSAKI: Well, I don't think we just give up that easily. We are — can continue to press — in coordination with the international community — China to be transparent, to be forthcoming with data and information. We're not going to just stand by and accept that they've said they're not going to participate. Now, at the same time, as you know, we're also launching our own review. And our own process, and I'm certain this will be a topic of discussion as the President goes overseas this week?

DOOCY: And when you say that the White House is going to continue to press, what is that? What is that? What press mean?

PSAKI: Well — 

DOOCY: What are you doing?

PSAKI: —  ok. 

DOOCY: No. I mean, like what — what mechanism? 

PSAKI: What steps are we taking to press.


PSAKI: We are engaging certainly at the highest levels and will continue to do that. Whether it's the secretary of state or other leaders who engage on it on through national security, diplomatic conversations and we will continue to work through the WHO and also with our international partners to exert that pressure and ensure that we're all going to keep pressing for them to release data — underlying data and participate in the second stage of this investigation.

DOOCY: And then just quickly, a housekeeping thing. Presidents Bush, Obama and Trump all commemorated D-Day anniversaries on D-Day — on D-Day anniversary. Why didn't President Biden?

PSAKI: Well, I can tell you that certainly the valid — his value for the role that men and the — men who served on D-Day and the memory of them, the families who have kept their memories alive over the course of years on this day is something the President spoke to many, many times in the past. Um, it's close to his heart, and I wouldn't be surprised if there's more we would have to say on it. 

Back at the circus, NBC’s Mike Memoli inquired about whether Biden and Manchin “are...on the same page” and if the latter has become “an obstacle to [Biden’s] agenda.”

Feinberg — the final member of the clown car — came up a little later, kvetching about the evils of the right in a minute-long statement about the “counting” of “votes,” and how Republicans have rigged elections in 2022 and 2024, citing “a lot of scholars” as being concerned about GOP-proposed voter integrity measures. 

As a solution, he asked Psaki if the White House would amend the For the People Act or Electoral Count Act of 1887 as a way to fight back.

To see the relevant transcript from June 7's briefing, click here.

Editor's Note: This piece has been updated to include Ryan's departure from American Urban Radio Networks to The Grio.