Friday's White House press briefing brought more of the same non-answer responses from Biden's Press Secretary — Karine Jean-Pierre — who's turned into something of a broken record when it comes to her repetitive insistence that the president takes classified documents "very seriously." (He doesn't.)
President Biden's spokeswoman repeatedly refused to answer questions from White House reporters, often making a similar excuse for why she couldn't say, for example, whether Biden would sit for an interview with investigators: The White House Counsel's Office has already issued statements and she simply can't say anything further.
Apparently Jean-Pierre expects everyone to accept that copping to the president's improper handling of sensitive documents *after* he'd been caught and the story broke — and then refusing to answer questions about the situation — is the utmost in transparency. (It's not.)
REPORTER: "Is it the policy of the White House that they should share that information not just with the National Archives, but with the American people?"— Townhall.com (@townhallcom) January 13, 2023
KJP: "I have been here almost every day...taking your questions...the actions that we took were right actions..." pic.twitter.com/w0wFF1A895
Instead of offering any information, Jean-Pierre just tried to brush the inquiries out of her briefing room and to the White House Counsel's Office as she's done in every briefing since news of Biden's top secret "whoopsie" broke.
Her repeated redirection of questions to the president's counsel drew an obvious question: Why won't Jean-Pierre invite Biden counsel Richard Sauber or someone from the counsel's office to the briefing room to answer reporters' questions if she, as press secretary, isn't allowed?
Naturally, Jean-Pierre rebuffed the suggestion and, yet again, directed questions to the White House Counsel's Office.
REPORTER: "You've several times today referred people to the White House counsel...would you bring Richard Sauber here...to answer these questions in the briefing room...?"— Townhall.com (@townhallcom) January 13, 2023
KJP: "I would refer you to the White House counsel office." pic.twitter.com/DSE7nh8jzj
It's not like Jean-Pierre isn't a fan of guests in her briefings. She frequently trots out National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan or the National Security Council's John Kirby to do a filibuster act of sorts and run out the clock to avoid having to weather long Q&A periods with reporters.
So what's different this time? Why won't the administration that promised transparency and to restore confidence in the presidency make their people who apparently have all the answers to questions about Biden's mishandling of classified documents available?
Well, that question was also raised in Friday's briefing. According to Karine Jean-Pierre, not having or being unwilling to give answers is proof that the Biden administration is delivering on its promise because being unresponsive to questions means that Biden has restored the independence of the Justice Department. Yay transparency? Apparently opaqueness is transparency and scattering classified documents around the Mid-Atlantic is treating them with the utmost seriousness.
REPORTER: "Does this episode undercut that argument that [Biden] would restore confidence...?"— Townhall.com (@townhallcom) January 13, 2023
KJP: "When we're saying we're gonna refer you to the Department of Justice, that is restoring independence as it relates to issues like this!" pic.twitter.com/jZI00Bv1Yj
Never mind, evidently, the mountain of evidence showing the White House giving woke marching orders to Attorney General Merrick Garland and the DOJ earlier in Biden's time in office.
It also became clear on Friday that the only answers Karine Jean-Pierre is willing to give are the ones reporters have already figured out and reported on. That is, only copping to wrongdoing after it's been made known. The best example of this was when Jean-Pierre said nothing about the second set of classified documents being found in Biden's garage in her briefing that happened less than one hour before reporting broke the existence of the Wilmington tranche next to the president's Corvette.
Again, Jean-Pierre had a repetitive excuse for her refusal to say anything that Biden hadn't already been busted for: It's "a process."
REPORTER: "You have answered questions when the press has broken the news..."— Townhall.com (@townhallcom) January 13, 2023
KJP: "Because it's an ongoing process. Because, again, it is an ongoing process. There is a process here...We respect that process." pic.twitter.com/LoB0tId0qh
That process, of course, conveniently obscures facts that the White House is aware of but the press and American people haven't found out yet. It's the opposite of transparency and antithetical to the Biden administration's stated promise to restore Americans' confidence in the White House and its occupant.