People on Twitter said that the press secretary of the White House Karine Jean-Pierre dodged and changed the subject of questions during Tuesday’s news conference.
As the White House press secretary, Jean-Pierre avoided talking about the details of Special Counsel John Durham’s report on the probe into whether or not the Trump campaign and Russia worked together.
In Durham’s long, 300-page report, it was found that both the FBI and DOJ did not follow the law as they were supposed to during the investigation into whether the Russian government and the Trump campaign worked together during the 2016 election. Even though the report came out on Monday, it wasn’t until RealClearNews reporter Philip Wegmann brought up the results and asked for a comment at the White House press briefing.
Wegmann’s question during the briefing was simple: “How does the White House respond to the special counsel report on the FBI’s handling of the Trump-Russia probe?”
In answer, Jean-Pierre changed the subject by saying, “I’ll let the Department of Justice say anything about that.”
Wegmann then asked another question, saying, “Despite what the report says, the President often says that he wants a DOJ and FBI that are not influenced by politics. Does he agree with what Special Counsel Durham said about how the FBI needs major changes?”
Jean-Pierre closed her briefing book with a sigh and said, “Once again, that is a matter for the Department of Justice.” She said with certainty that she wouldn’t say anything else about the subject. She also said, “We remain committed to an independent Justice Department, as you alluded to in your question.” She did this by bringing up the President’s campaign promise and the promise to have a politically neutral Justice Department. As she left the stage, she told the people in the crowd, “I’ll see you all in Japan.”
Critics took to social media to show their displeasure, pointing out that Jean-Pierre didn’t talk about the White House’s role in the matter or talk about what she had said in the past about the Russia collusion accusation.
Before becoming the White House press secretary, Jean-Pierre posted a number of tweets that seemed to back the idea that then-President Donald Trump was “illegitimate” and working with the Russians. In December 2016, she tweeted the same thing that then-Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid had said: “Flynn, Manafort, and The Donald himself (inviting Russia to participate in espionage on our election) #PutinLoveAffair.”
She kept talking about her ideas in 2018, saying, “Russia is still winning because Putin’s puppet Trump keeps openly hurting America’s standing on the world stage.”
Steve Guest, who works for Ted Cruz’s communications team, showed screenshots of Jean-Pierre’s tweets and said, “It’s no wonder KJP left the stage. She is to blame for spreading the ‘Russia, Russia, Russia’ lie.”
Even Ian Miles Cheong, a writer, had something to say about Jean-Pierre’s tweets. He said, “She may try to avoid, but she’s not doing it. “Psaki’s “circle-back” answers were much better.”
Katie Pavlich, who works for Fox News, said, “Jake Sullivan, who was part of the Clinton campaign in 2016 and helped make up the Russia hoax, is now Biden’s National Security Advisor, and the White House is still deferring to the DOJ.”
People on Twitter were disappointed that the White House didn’t give a direct answer to the accusations of Russian collusion and didn’t talk about Jean-Pierre’s earlier position on the issue. Durham’s report didn’t suggest big changes to how the agencies work, but it did raise concerns about the lack of analytical rigor, apparent confirmation bias, and overreliance on information from people with ties to Trump’s political opponents in the investigation of claims of foreign collusion with Trump.
The way the White House handled the problem continued to get bad reviews and be talked about on social media. People from different backgrounds and media sites were upset that the White House didn’t provide enough information and explanations. The fact that there was no direct response to the accusation of collusion with Russia and that Jean-Pierre had his own opinions on the subject made people even more unhappy.
As the news cycle went on, the fallout from Durham’s report and the reactions and statements from different political players stayed at the top of the public’s mind. It was clear that the report’s release would continue to shape how the Russia connection claim is told and how it affects the political scene.
After Durham’s report came out, many people thought the White House would give a more detailed answer. Critics said that Jean-Pierre’s comments at the press briefing didn’t do enough to answer the questions asked in the report, leaving a lot of unanswered questions.
As the investigation, the roles of the FBI and DOJ, and ongoing talks about the report went on, the focus moved to what the Russia collusion story meant and what it meant for the future. As more information from Durham’s report came out, it became clear that the issue would be looked at and talked about more.
The public was excitedly waiting for more information and insights, hoping that the White House would be more open about how they planned to answer the remaining questions and allegations. The way the situation was handled would continue to be looked at closely, and it would be important to have clear and complete answers to the questions asked by Durham’s report.
The Russia conspiracy story’s effect on politics and people’s trust in government institutions was still a major point of disagreement. The events that happened after Durham’s report were eagerly awaited because they could change how people talk and think about the investigation into whether the Trump campaign worked with Russia to win the 2016 election.
As the story went on, it became clear that the effects would go beyond the players and parties involved. Instead, they would have a wider impact on talks about accountability, transparency, and the integrity of the democratic process. The release of Durham’s report was just the start of a new part of the ongoing story that caught the attention of the whole country.