SURPRISE: ABC and NBC reporters ask Psaki about Biden’s health after coughing attack


Thursday’s episode of The Psaki Show featured two welcome surprises as NBC’s Kelly O’Donnell and then ABC’s Karen Travers asked Press Secretary Jen Psaki about President Biden’s health in light of Biden’s had to repeatedly struggle with a cough to end his remarks an hour earlier on the economy. The questions came after the liberal media spent years insistent President Trump show severe cognitive and physical declines.

After some solid questions about Afghanistan, O’Donnell changed the subject: “A lot of us were in the East Room watching the President. We have seen him on several occasions where he has a repeated cough. What is the situation with this cough and is it a problem? “

Psaki immediately retaliated that “[i]this is not a problem” and “We have a doctor traveling with him – obviously checking if – if it’s ever warranted and certainly continues to be the case, as it has been since the start of his presidency.”

O’Donnell wasn’t taking this for an answer, so she continued: “Is there an explanation for the fact that he coughs so often in situations like this?” I’m sure you’ve seen it.

Psaki says that she too saw, but did not “think it was a cause for concern” because “there are a variety of reasons why we may need to clear our throats or we may need to clear our throats. can have a little cold, “which” presidents, elected officials, journalists, spokespersons may face.

Before continuing, Psaki insisted that Biden’s coughing fits are “not an area where we have a medical problem.”

Skip about 30 minutes and Travers asked about it in the context of when Biden will get a physical exam: “Following one of Kelly’s questions. Do you have an update on when the president will get a physical exam? “

Psaki provided an answer that certainly wouldn’t slip under Trump, calling it an “understandable question”, although “I don’t have an update.”

“He’ll have one soon.” And when it does, we’ll make sure you all are aware of it and get the information, ”she added.

Elsewhere in the briefing, Fox’s Jacqui Heinrich cited Senate testimony from Army General Scott Miller as a means of calling out more false truths about Biden’s Afghanistan (click “expand”):

HEINRICH: And I wanted to go to the hearing on the Hill –

PSAKI: Yeah.

HEINRICH: – with General Miller. The president told ABC in August that none of his advisers had recommended leaving 2,500 troops in Afghanistan. General Miller told the Senate Armed Services Committee that was exactly what he recommended. Was the president’s response in this interview an honest response?

PSAKI: First of all, I won’t go into the details of the private advice the president gets from his national security team or his military advisers. What is clear is that the President has asked for, welcomed frank, unsweetened advice on Afghanistan and what we should do given what we have gotten into which is a deal made. with the Taliban with a May 1 deadline including the release of 5,000 Taliban fighters where we would need to get our American forces out or we would be in conflict. That’s what he was up against. As for the mechanisms for determining who provided what advice through which forum, I’m just not going to go into that level of detail from here.

HEINRICH: Did the president specifically agree with the recommendation of the commander on the ground in Afghanistan that he was concerned that a full withdrawal was devastating and should not happen?

PSAKI: He received a series of advice. I won’t go into more detail than that. But what’s important to note at this point, so it’s clear that 2,500 troops would not have been sustainable on the ground. It would either be an increase in ground troops or a withdrawal of ground troops. And the president has been clear time and time again that he will not send thousands and thousands of additional troops to fight a war the Afghans did not want to fight on their own.

Moments later, Newsmax’s Emerald Robinson had a rare opportunity to interview Psaki (who is clearly not a fan of her) and, after urging her to quit the FDA last month, the reporter for the White House said the Biden administration “is cutting” the provision of monoclonal antibodies “in the 50 percent red states”.

After arguing that the treatments can be used for anyone who has contracted COVID (vaccinated or unvaccinated), Psaki retaliated by saying his claims were “not accurate.”

Psaki pointed out that while “monoclonal antibodies are life-saving therapies that are used after infection to prevent more serious outcomes,” the best way to avoid even needing them is to get the vaccine in the first place.

However, Psaki went on to talk about the need for a “fair” distribution of resources, so Robinson intervened (click “expand”):

PSAKI: But over the past month, considering the increase in cases due to the Delta variant and the lower number of vaccination rates in some of these states like Florida, like Texas, only seven states account for 70% of the orders. Our offer is not unlimited. And we think it should be fair among states –

[INAUDIBLE ROBINSON]

PSAKI: – across the country. Do you –

ROBINSON: There’s been no report of a – of a lack of supply, so why cut them off in those states only if there’s no report of –

PSAKI: I think our role as – as a government overseeing the whole country, is to be fair in how we distribute. We’re not going to give Florida a higher percentage than Oklahoma, and I don’t think you’re suggesting that either. I think we have to move forward.

To view the transcript of the relevant September 16 briefing, click ‘expand’.

White House press briefing (via CBSN)
September 16, 2021
2:59 p.m. EST

KELLY O’DONNELL: A very different and separate subject. Many of us were in the east room watching the chair. We have seen him on several occasions where he has a repeated cough. What is the situation with this cough and is it a concern?

JEN PSAKI: It’s not a problem. We have a doctor traveling with him – obviously checking if – if it’s ever warranted, and certainly it continues to be the case, as it has been since the start of his presidency.

O’DONNELL: Is there any explanation for the fact that he coughs so frequently in situations like this? I’m sure you’ve seen it.

PSAKI: I did. I don’t think that’s a matter of concern. I think there is a whole host of reasons why we may need to clear our throats or we may have a little cold. And it is certainly something that presidents, elected officials, journalists, spokespersons can face, but it is not an area where we have a medical problem.

(….)

3:18 p.m. EST

JACQUI HEINRICH: And I wanted to go to the hearing on the Hill –

PSAKI: Yeah.

HEINRICH: – with General Miller. The president told ABC in August that none of his advisers had recommended leaving 2,500 troops in Afghanistan. General Miller told the Senate Armed Services Committee that was exactly what he recommended. Was the president’s response in this interview an honest response?

PSAKI: First of all, I won’t go into the details of the private advice the president gets from his national security team or his military advisers. What is clear is that the President has asked for, welcomed frank, unsweetened advice on Afghanistan and what we should do given what we have gotten into which is a deal made. with the Taliban with a May 1 deadline including the release of 5,000 Taliban fighters where we would need to get our American forces out or we would be in conflict. That’s what he was up against. As for the mechanisms for determining who provided what advice through which forum, I’m just not going to go into that level of detail from here.

HEINRICH: Did the president specifically agree with the recommendation of the commander on the ground in Afghanistan that he was concerned that a full withdrawal was devastating and should not happen?

PSAKI: He received a series of advice. I won’t go into more detail than that. But what’s important to note at this point, so it’s clear that 2,500 troops would not have been sustainable on the ground. It would either be an increase in ground troops or a withdrawal of ground troops. And the president has been clear time and time again that he will not send thousands and thousands of additional troops to fight a war the Afghans did not want to fight on their own.

(….)

3:22 p.m. EST

ROBINSON: I have another question on the president –

PSAKI: Mmhmm.

ROBINSON: – Covid plan. He promised on September 9 that he would send 50% more monoclonal antibodies to states. Yet the Biden administration is cutting supplies to the Red States by 50%. So, for example, you know, in Florida they expected to get 70,000 doses this week, which they say they need. They only get 30,000 doses. And it’s not just for unvaccinated people. In South Florida, half of the people seeking this treatment are fully vaccinated. So why is the Biden administration cutting these supplies?

PSAKI: This is not correct. So let me give you the exact information. First of all, we are increasing our distribution this month by 50 percent. At the beginning of August, we were distributing an average of 100,000 doses per week. Now we’ve been shipping an average of 150,000 doses per week, over the last month, though – and one thing I think people need to understand for clarity, I know – I know you are – like the facts, this It’s that monoclonal antibodies are life-saving therapies that are used after infection to prevent more serious outcomes. So clearly the way to protect people and save more lives is to get them vaccinated so they don’t get – Covid to begin with. But over the past month, given the increase in cases from the Delta variant and the lower number of vaccination rates in some of those states like Florida, like Texas, only seven states account for 70% of orders. Our offer is not unlimited. And we think it should be fair among states –

[INAUDIBLE ROBINSON]

PSAKI: – across the country. Do you –

ROBINSON: There’s been no report of a – of a lack of supply, so why cut them off in those states only if there’s no report of –

PSAKI: I think our role as – as a government overseeing the whole country, is to be fair in how we distribute. We’re not going to give Florida a higher percentage than Oklahoma, and I don’t think you’re suggesting that either. I think we have to move forward.

(….)

3:29 p.m. EST

KAREN TRAVERS: Following one of Kelly’s questions. Do you have an update on when the president will get a physical exam? “

PSAKI: I – I know that’s an understandable question. I don’t have an update. He will receive one soon. And when it does, we’ll make sure you all are aware of it and get the information.





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