After more than a month on hiatus while President Donald Trump continues to push his conspiracy theory that the presidential election was rigged, White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany returned for a press briefing on Friday — and it did not go well. McEnany, who vowed to always be truthful when she was appointed press secretary in early May, is now tasked with upholding the Trump campaign’s election lies, while silencing the reporters who would dare question why the president won’t concede.
In fact, this is exactly what happened Friday when reporters asked when the White House will admit that Trump lost the election. CNN White House correspondent Kaitlan Collins explained on Twitter that she asked McEnany why she wouldn’t call on all reporters, given that they hadn’t had access to the press secretary since October 1 and very few reporters were present due to social distancing guidelines. But McEnany had just one response for Collins: “I don’t call on activists.”
“I’m not an activist and you haven’t taken questions since October 1st and you just took about five, Kayleigh,” Collins shot back. “That’s not doing your job.” Collins later recounted the back and forth on Twitter, writing, “It’s understandable why someone who hasn’t done their job — taking questions from reporters — in weeks would confuse someone else doing theirs with activism.”
Appearing in her professional capacity, @PressSec takes only a handful of questions in her first briefing since Oct. 1. Asked why can’t call on all reporters — given it’s been so long and there are not many of us due to social distancing — she called me “an activist.”
— Kaitlan Collins (@kaitlancollins) November 20, 2020
Kayleigh to CNN's Kaitlan Collins: "I don't call on activists." pic.twitter.com/OKrDhksQW6
— Scott Whitlock (@ScottJW) November 20, 2020
But that wasn’t the only tense back and forth during the briefing. Several reporters showed up ready to hold the Trump administration accountable for refusing to concede to President-elect Joe Biden — and with good reason. As Playboy’s senior White House reporter Brian Karem pointed out on Twitter, McEnany “refused to call Biden ‘President-Elect,’” instead referring to him as the former vice president.
And while he and other reporters continued to press McEnany on when the country might see the president concede and allow for a proper transition of power, the press secretary claimed that Trump had received more votes in this election than any other president in U.S. history — except, again, Joe Biden. McEnany also peddled another Trump lie that mail-in voting is “particularly prone to fraud” despite the fact that federal election infrastructure officials have said the 2020 election was actually the “most secure in American history.”
After taking just a few questions and throwing her tantrum about the reporters who demanded answers with regards to Trump’s loss, McEnany stormed off. Unfortunately for the press secretary, she has so few opportunities left to throw her jabs before she’s no longer allowed in the White House — just 61 to be exact. But who’s counting?
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