ANDREW CABALLERO-REYNOLDS/AFP via Getty Images
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During a Monday press briefing, White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre was asked why President Biden has not held many "formal" press conferences during his time in office.
Biden has an upcoming trip to the United Kingdom and Ireland, but no formal press conferences are scheduled.
"The second question has to do with the lack of a press conference during the president's upcoming trip, and the lack of a press conference that we see in general from this White House," the reporter stated to Jean-Pierre.
"I represent a news organization that owns 113 television stations, and a question that I'm often asked, and I don't know the answer to, so I'll ask you that question: Is the administration trying to protect the president from our questions?" he asked.
"Absolutely not!" Jean-Pierre replied. "Absolutely not."
The reporter then questioned, "So why the lack of any interaction in a formal setting, to have a press conference?"
Jean-Pierre claimed that the president has often directly answered the media's questions.
"I mean, the president takes shouted questions – I understand, John, I understand. I understand. I've dealt with this question about three times already. I understand that it is … the job of you all to ask this question to me, totally get that," Jean-Pierre told the reporter.
"And that's not a problem at all. But, certainly, the president, many times, has stood in front of all of you, has taken questions on his own, because he wanted to see what was on your minds, he wanted to see what the questions you all were going to ask him. And he wanted to answer them directly," she continued.
"That has happened multiple times, many times during this administration," Jean-Pierre added. "And that will certainly continue to be. When it comes to a formal press conference, I don't have anything to share with you at this time."
The reporter continued to press Jean-Pierre, stating that members of the media have not had the opportunity to ask the president questions "in quite some time."
Jean-Pierre called it "unprecedented" for a president to answer as many shouted questions as Biden has during his time in office.
Reporters then seemed to grumble in disagreement at Jean-Pierre's claim.
"Well, we'll certainly get the data and share that with all of you. … I hear you. I hear you on the press conference, on a formal press conference. We get this probably every couple of months when you guys ask us about a formal press conference. I don't have anything to share with all of you at this time. And I'll just leave it there," Jean-Pierre concluded before moving on from the question.
Since taking office in 2021 through January 2023, Biden has held 21 press conferences, according to data collected by the University of California, Santa Barbara. Former President Trump held 88 during his four years in office, and Obama held 163 during his eight years in office.
\u201cReporter: "Is the administration trying to protect the president from our questions?"\n\nWH press sec: "Absolutely not"\n\nReporter: "Then why the lack of any interaction in a formal setting...?"\n\nWH press sec: "The president takes shouted questions"\u201d— The Post Millennial (@The Post Millennial) 1681154530
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Candace Hathaway is a staff writer for Blaze News.