Joe Biden’s frequent refusal to answer questions seems to be catching up with him. On Wednesday, the White House press pool filed a formal complaint against Joe Biden for refusing to answer questions from the media in the wake of various crises that have occurred on his watch.
The last straw appeared to be Biden’s joint appearance with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson. Johnson took three questions from the media, but White House aides prevented Biden from getting any questions.
“[President] Biden and British PM [Boris Johnson] meet to discuss pandemic, trade and other issues. Johnson took 3 questions. White House aides shouted down U.S. attempts to ask questions,” CBS News reporter Ed O’Keefe tweeted. “I asked Biden about southern border and we couldn’t decipher what he said.”
IN THE OVAL OFFICE… @POTUS Biden and British PM @BorisJohnson meet to discuss pandemic, trade and other issues. Johnson took 3 questions. White House aides shouted down U.S. attempts to ask questions. I asked Biden about southern border and we couldn’t decipher what he said. pic.twitter.com/A86kgdfsuc
— Ed O'Keefe (@edokeefe) September 21, 2021
You can watch the chaotic scene here:
CBS News' @EdOkeefe reports that during Pres. Biden's bilateral meeting with British PM Boris Johnson, U.S. press questions about the southern border were shouted down by White House aides. The president's answer was undecipherable. pic.twitter.com/MeXVTcFEBX
— CBS News (@CBSNews) September 21, 2021
“Boris Johnson took two questions from the British press, President Biden refused to take any, domestic or international,” noted Darren Grimes of GB News. “I can well imagine the headlines if Trump did the same, he’d be decried as an ‘authoritarian’, a ‘fascist dictator’ evading scrutiny.”
White House Correspondents’ Association President Steven Portnoy filed a formal complaint over the incident.
“The entire editorial component of the U.S. pool went immediately into Jen Psaki’s office to register a formal complaint that no American reporters were recognized for questions in the president’s Oval Office, and that wranglers loudly shouted over the president as he seemed to give an answer to Ed O’Keefe’s question about the situation at the Southern Border,” Portnoy said in a statement. “Biden’s answer could not be heard over the shouting.”
Why is anyone in the media surprised that Joe Biden doesn’t like to take questions? Were they not paying attention during the 2020 presidential campaign, when Biden spent months hiding in his basement?
Were they not paying attention when Biden refused to reveal his position on court-packing or ending the filibuster until after the election?
Were they not paying attention when Biden refused to answer questions about his family’s business dealings?
The media knew, but they didn’t care then. Heck, Biden’s refusal to take questions from the media was bad enough that even CNN’s Chris Cillizza said last summer that it was “long past time for Joe Biden to start taking questions from the press.”
“The presumptive Democratic presidential nominee has taken questions from the press twice in the past 48 days,” Cillizza wrote on August 20, 2020. “That’s not nearly enough.”
But the reason why Biden was kept away from the media was no secret either. “I get why Biden and his team are limiting his exposure to the media,” Cillizza said. “They know Biden is winning. They know the way to keep winning is to keep the spotlight on Trump as much as possible.”
He continued, “They also know that Biden is an unpredictable messenger. He says things he shouldn’t. He makes news — and not in a good way for the whole make-the-race-a-straight-referendum-on-Trump strategy.”
This is the guy the media wanted. A guy who was protected from the media because his off-the-cuff responses were unpredictable and often embarrassing to him, which played into Trump’s hands.
Did they really think that when Biden was in office that would change? This is the guy they wanted. They chose this, and they shouldn’t be shocked.