Let's See How Mean Today's White House Press Briefing Is!

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Considering what Jen Psaki had to say yesterday ...

Let's watch together! And for a change we are actually gonna liveblog the wrasslin'. Because we think there might be wrasslin'.


youtu.be

3:01 Oh hello we are only two hours late for a thing that was supposed to start TWO HOURS AGO.

But it's kind of a shitty day! We imagine there was some kinda fuuuuuucked up drama happening behind the scenes, and that is why we had to wait. And that is why we are liveblogging this garbage.

3:02: While we're waiting, or during a boring part of the briefing, here is a hilarious piece from TPM about how literally all our jokes are true and this really is all about Joe Manchin being a whinyassed whinyass holding the country hostage over his feelings.

Also it just appears more and more that he's a quantifiably bad person.

3:04: Psaki begins by explaining that President Biden has gotten more badass judges confirmed than any president since George Washington and faster than any president since Jesus. Here's a nice Wonkette on Biden judges!

Jen Psaki does not want to discuss Old Stinker Manchin. They will ask her questions about it, but she's busy talking about all the great shit Biden has gotten done WITHOUT him.

3:08: First question is about COVID and vaccines and omicron and whatnot. You know, because that's the other major sin the Biden White House has done today, on top of the one where they spun around three times and whispered "Joe Manchin," which hurt the senator's feelings very much. They ALSO have been saying out loud that vaxxed people get a sniffle, while unvaxxed idiots who refuse a free and safe vaccine are very often DYING.

Oh, finally a question about Manchin. Long question, but essentially, the question was "the fuck with that guy?" (Not exact quote.)

Psaki says y'all read what she said, no need to relitigate it. Says Biden and Manchin are still longtime friends or whatever. Says the problem is INACTION. "We're going to work like hell to get it done."

3:11: Does Biden feel betrayed?

Psaki says you read that thing yesterday, once again.

3:13: Next question is what about Russia and Ukraine? Is Joe Manchin amassing any of his hurt feelings on the Ukrainian border?

Haha just kidding, that is not the geopolitical risk of Russia and Ukraine that anybody is talking about right now.

3:16: Some attractive man reporter asks if Jen Psaki knows what it was that Manchin said the White House did, which he was referring to on the radio when he was like THEY KNOW WHAT THEY DID, which hurt his feelings so much? Psaki said she doesn't know WTF, but according to that TPM link above it's that the White House issued a statement about the negotiations that specifically said his name and nobody else's name, and that the poor dear felt singled out and boo hoo and blah blah blah.

Ooh, and now a reporter is asking about JUST that. Has Jen Psaki read the source piece from Steve Clemons about what happened to Manchin's feelings? No she has not. She does not have to read every newspaper article about Joe Manchin's feelings.

3:22: REPORTER: Are you gonna be nice to Joe Manchin again sometime?

PSAKI: We were already being nice to him! Jesus!

REPORTER: What bout anti-vaxxers who refuse to get vaccine? You gonna be nice to them?

PSAKI: Oh my God.

3:28: How often is Joe Biden tested for COVID? All the time.

Earlier question was a weird version of that, about like IS JOE BIDEN UNDER QUARANTINE? Psaki was like "uh no?"

QUESTION: Are White House staffers upset that Joe Manchin was upset about the White House staffers hurting his feelings?

PSAKI: You saw what we said.

QUESTION: Has the White House learned a lesson from all this?

PSAKI: Next!

3:32: BTW we have been alerted that the TPM we keep linking to is paywalled, but the source piece for it is not. But here's some of the meat of the TPM:

Apparently the real blow up was that the White House put out a statement last week in which the President said he believed he was making progress on finalizing a Build Back Better deal with Joe Manchin. The key apparently was that he named Manchin specifically rather than Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema or Manchin and the rest of the caucus or whatever else.

In other words, in what was actually a positive and cordial statement he pointed to Manchin by name. In other words, kinda sorta implicitly saying that Manchin was the hold up but that he was optimistic they’d get to a deal. This apparently set Manchin off and led him to torpedo the negotiations and basically the President’s whole domestic agenda. How do we know this? Steven Clemons goes into the details here and Clemons is very close to Manchin.

As Clemons explains, Manchin saw his being named in the statement as “a breach of process, a breach of spirit, a breach of Joe and Joe working this out.” He seems to believe it was Biden’s staff rather than the President himself who committed the lapse. This is what Manchin was apparently referring to this morning when he told a West Virginia talk radio station: “They drove some things, they put some things out that were absolutely inexcusable.”

So there you go.

3:36: PSAKI, VERBATIM: "I can't speak for Senator Manchin on what's upset him."

Hahahahaha American politics are irreparably broken.

3:39: REPORTER: is anybody being fired for hurting Joe Manchin's feelings?

PSAKI: No. He hasn't even ... WTF.

3:44: REPORTER: Does the president think Senator Biden ...

PSAKI: The president always thinks of himself as a senator!

REPORTER: Do you even think Joe Manchin was ever negotiating in good faith?

PSAKI: We always thought so!

Uh huh.

And now there is a whining question from a different reporter about whether "harsh rhetoric" might make Joe Manchin's feelings push him right out of the Democratic party. You know, because Joe Manchin is the biggest victim of all this.

3:47: REPORTER: Why were you so surprised Joe Manchin backed out?

PSAKI: Private statements. Private commitments. That's why we were surprised.

3:54: Wrapping it up!

QUESTION: Y'all gonna shut shit down because omicron?

PSAKI: No. Two hundred million Americans are vaccinated. It's not the same as before.

QUESTION: AOC was talkin' some shit this morning.

PSAKI: Didn't see it, but we like her. Is there more work to do? Yes, of course. But have we done a lot? Yes, also that. SEE, JOE MANCHIN? DON'T GOTTA BE ALL WEIRD ABOUT ALL OF IT.

She didn't say those all caps things, that was Wonkette, obnoxiously editorializing.

And now it's over! If you like liveblogs, tip your bartenders below!

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Evan Hurst

Evan Hurst is the managing editor of Wonkette, which means he is the boss of you, unless you are Rebecca, who is boss of him. His dog Lula is judging you right now.

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