White House press secretary Jen Psaki was widely mocked Friday over her response to questions about President Joe Biden's glaring absence from the southern United States border.
During a CNN town hall on Thursday, Biden was asked why he has not visited the U.S. border, the site of an ongoing migrant crisis, as president. Biden said he has "been there before" and nonchalantly admitted, "I guess I should go down." However, Biden blamed a busy schedule for not having made the trip nearly one year into his presidency.
At the White House press briefing, Fox News correspondent Peter Doocy questioned Psaki about Biden's comments. In response, Psaki explained that Biden briefly drove by the border while on the campaign trail — in 2008.
"Why did President Biden say he has been to the border?" Doocy asked.
"As you may have seen, there's been reporting that he did drive through the border when he was on the campaign trail in 2008. And he is certainly familiar with the fact — and it stuck with him — with the fact that in El Paso, the border goes right through the center of town," Psaki responded.
Psaki added that Biden "does not need a visit to the border to know what a mess was left by the last administration."
What was the reaction?
Psaki was promptly blasted for her response, which came after Customs and Border Protection revealed there were more than 1.7 million immigrant encounters at the southern border in fiscal year 2021, the highest recorded figure in U.S. history.
- "Gonna use this excuse next time my wife asks me if I went to the grocery store like she asked," Ben Shapiro quipped.
- "Psaki is disturbingly comfortable mouthing nonsensical spin and gaslighting like this, I'll never understand how some are perfectly wired for the shamelessness that politics often requires of ppl," Seth Mandel, editor of the Washington Examiner magazine, said.
- "Jen Psaki would like you to know that Joe Biden maybe went to the border 13 years ago for a photo op and never went back. (That's a thing of pride, apparently)," Bryan Dean Wright said.
- "I drove by a hospital once in 2008… Now I know everything about it," congressional candidate Graham Allen mocked.
- "Too busy lying about Border Patrol whipping people, huh?" Rep. Chip Roy (R-Texas) said.
- "Where did she get this talking point from - THE BABYLON BEE?!" Blaze host Sara Gonzales mocked.
- "I thought this was satire lmao," another person mocked.
According to a fact check conducted by the Washington Post, the visit that Psaki referred to was "a brief drive-by." In fact, the Post described it as "almost like counting a refueling stop as a visit to a country."