PBS journalist Yamiche Alcindor questioned White House press secretary Jen Psaki over why the Biden administration was not defending Rep. Maxine Waters' (D-Calif.) comments urging protesters to "get more confrontational" — even calling on the White House to endorse the Democratic lawmaker's controversial remarks.
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Waters sparked uproar over the weekend when she urged protesters in Minnesota to "stay on the street," "get more confrontational" and "make sure that they know that we mean business" if former Minneapolis police Officer Derek Chauvin was not found guilty of murdering George Floyd.
Waters' comments were interpreted by many as an attempt at inciting violence, after Floyd's death sparked deadly riots and looting across the nation last year. Republican House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (Calif.) even offered a resolution to censure Waters in the lower chamber, but Democrats were able to kill the measure.
Ahead of Chauvin being found guilty on all counts on Tuesday, Alcindor asked Psaki during a media briefing, "I wonder why the White House isn't coming to the defense of Rep. Waters given the fact that she is facing an onslaught of attacks by, I would say Republicans."
"I wonder why the White House isn't saying, 'We back what she said about being confrontational,'" Alcindor continued, saying of Waters, "she was obviously not threatening violence."
The PBS White House correspondent then argued, "There are civil rights leaders saying that's what civil rights is, to be confrontational, to be active."
Alcindor's defense of Waters drew criticism online, with several on social media calling for the defunding of PBS over the blatantly biased line of questioning.
Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) reacted to the exchange by tweeting, "When PBS is even MORE of a partisan shill than the DEMOCRATIC White House...."
When PBS is even MORE of a partisan shill than the DEMOCRATIC White House.... https://t.co/E3vVmpvdZN— Ted Cruz (@Ted Cruz) 1618942156.0
Alcindor has made headlines in the past for displaying favor to Democrats over Republicans.
During President Joe Biden's first official press conference in January, online critics took the PBS correspondent to task for offering softball questions to the Democrat.
Former Trump aide Mercedes Schlapp said of Alcindor at the time, "Yamiche should be hired as the DNC press Secretary. Compare her questioning of Trump and Biden."
Yamiche should be hired as the DNC press Secretary. Compare her questioning of Trump and Biden.— Mercedes Schlapp (@Mercedes Schlapp) 1616694385.0