Karine Jean-Pierre is preparing to take over for Jen Psaki as White House press secretary at the end of the week, and her previous blasts at those who don’t share her progressive views are drawing fresh media attention.
In 2020, she said on MSNBC that Fox News is “racist.” In 2019, she urged Democrats not to attend the annual convention of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), accusing the bipartisan pro-Israel group of “severely racist, Islamophobic rhetoric.”
In 2016, Ms. Jean-Pierre said the election was “stolen.” A year later, she called then-President Donald Trump a “deplorable illegitimate president.”
“Stolen emails, stolen drone, stolen election: Welcome to the world of #unpresidented Trump,” she tweeted in December 2016.
She made a similar charge about Georgia. In 2020, she accused Republican Gov. Brian Kemp of Georgia of stealing the 2016 race from Stacey Abrams, his Democratic opponent.
“Reminder: Brian Kemp stole the gubernatorial election from Georgians and Stacey Abrams,” tweeted Ms. Jean-Pierre.
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Certainly nobody would expect Ms. Jean-Pierre to be politically neutral. Before joining the Biden White House, she worked from 2016-20 as spokesperson for the left-wing group MoveOn.org and as a political analyst for MSNBC.
At the same time, reports of her highly partisan missives, including the unproven allegations of election fraud, have snowballed since her appointment was announced May 5, stoking criticism on the right.
Republican strategist Matt Wolking, who posted Monday the “stolen election” tweets, said Ms. Jean-Pierre “spread conspiracy theories about multiple stolen elections and falsely claimed President Trump was an ‘illegitimate president.’”
Chimed in OutKick founder Clay Travis: “I’m sure the new White House minister of truth will be investigating this disinformation soon.”
— Matt Wolking (@MattWolking) May 9, 2022
Her jabs at AIPAC drew coverage in the Jerusalem press and prompted a rebuke Tuesday from the pro-Israel Endowment for Middle East Truth (EMET), which expressed “deep dismay, disgust and despair” at her appointment.
“It is absolutely nauseating that the administration would bend so far to the highly progressive, radical wing of the Democratic party and appoint a spokesperson for the White House who has such clearly antisemitic and Israelophobic views, particularly while anti-Semitism is on the rise in the United States,” said EMET founder and president Sarah Stern in a statement.
In a 2019 op-ed for Newsweek, Ms. Jean-Pierre blasted AIPAC for hosting then-Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at its conference, saying that under his leadership, “Israel may have committed war crimes in its attacks on Gazan protesters.”
“Unfortunately, AIPAC’s policy and conference speaker choices aren’t its only problems,” Ms. Jean-Pierre wrote. “Its severely racist, Islamophobic rhetoric has proven just as alarming. The organization has become known for trafficking in anti-Muslim and anti-Arab rhetoric while lifting up Islamophobic voices and attitudes.”
The endowment said her “war crimes” comment demonstrated “her total bias in favor of the Palestinians” and “a complete failure to understand the context of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.”
“To sweep under the rug, overlook and ignore Ms. Jean-Pierre’s antisemitism in the appointment of such a critically important position as White House Press Secretary is enabling it to continue,” said Ms. Stern.
The Washington Times has reached out to the White House for comment.
Ms. Jean-Pierre, 44, who currently serves as principal deputy press secretary, will become the first Black and openly gay person to hold the position when she takes over Friday.
Her promotion spurred conflict-of-interest questions because her partner is CNN national correspondent Suzanne Malveaux. CNN has said it will move Ms. Malveaux off the White House and politics beat during Ms. Jean-Pierre’s tenure.
The dig at Fox News came during a discussion of the novel coronavirus and anti-Asian racism on a March 2020 episode of MSNBC’s “The Joy Reid Show.”
“Fox News was racist before the coronavirus, they are racist during the coronavirus, and Fox News will be racist after the coronavirus,” said Ms. Jean-Pierre in a clip posted Monday on Mediaite. “There is nothing new here.”
Ms. Jean-Pierre will presumably be working with Fox News reporters in her new post, starting with White House correspondent Peter Doocy, raising questions about her ability to treat the right-tilting press fairly.
“The day Karine Jean-Pierre takes over for Jen Psaki as White House Press Secretary every one of Peter Doocy’s tough questions become racist homophobia,” tweeted Carmine Sabia, managing editor of The Federalist Papers.
President Biden praised her in a May 5 statement announcing her appointment.
“Karine not only brings the experience, talent and integrity needed for this difficult job, but she will continue to lead the way in communicating about the work of the Biden-Harris administration on behalf of the American people,” Mr. Biden said.
— Jeff Mordock contributed to this report.