Fox News’ John Roberts Expresses Anger After Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany Refuses To Directly Denounce White Supremacy
Fox News White House correspondent John Roberts was visibly angry after a press conference in which Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany, pressed by him to denounce white supremacists, refused to so.
“For all of you on Twitter who are hammering me for asking that question — I don’t care,” Roberts said in a live shot from the White House lawn. “Because it is a question that needs to be asked, and clearly, the president’s Republican colleagues a mile away from here are looking for an answer for it too. So stop deflecting, stop blaming the media. I’m tired of it.”
Earlier, at a briefing, Roberts asked McEnany, “I would like to ask you for a definitive and declarative statement without ambiguity or deflection. As the person who speaks for the president, does the president denounce white supremacy and groups that espouse it in all their forms.”
McEnany said, “This has been answered. Yesterday by the president himself. The day before by the president himself on the debate stage. The president was asked this. He said, ‘sure’ three times. Yesterday, he was asked point blank, ‘Do you denounce white supremacy,’ and he said ‘I have always denounced any form of that.’”
She went through other quotes where she said the president “has condemned white supremacy more than any other president in modern history.”
But Roberts pressed her to make a declarative statement that the president denounces white supremacy. “I just did,” she insisted, although she never made such a statement.
He then accused Roberts of “contriving a storyline and a narrative.”
Roberts continued to press her to make a declarative statement, rather than reading from Trump’s past quotes.
At the debate on Tuesday, moderator Chris Wallace asked Trump whether he would denounce white supremacists. When Trump asked for a specific group, Joe Biden mentioned Proud Boys, the far right hate group. Trump told them “to stand back and stand by,” but later claimed he did not know who they were.
Later, Roberts said on Fox News that it “all remains very puzzling” why the White House wouldn’t just make a declarative statement. “If the president didn’t know who the Proud Boys were and he just threw out the name, if he didn’t know who they were, why did he denounce them. Why didn’t he said, ‘I don’t know who they are. Can you give me a little bit more information about them.”
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