March 21, 2023

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Psaki pushes back against Fox criticism

Psaki pushes back against Fox criticism

White House press secretary Jen Psaki on Friday pushed back against criticism from Fox News host John Roberts, who slammed Psaki for saying during a recent interview that his cable news network asks “stupid” questions.

In a Friday night tweet, Psaki said both she and Fox News reporter Peter Doocy — whom the White House has criticized for his questions at press briefings — were doing their jobs.

“He is doing his job. I am doing mine. We debate. We disagree. I respect that,” Psaki wrote.

The controversy started when Psaki was asked if Doocy was “a stupid son of a bitch” during an interview with “Pod Save America.” President Biden had once referred to Doocy by the same phrase when he was caught on a hot mic.

Psaki replied that Doocy “works for a network that provides people with questions that, nothing personal to any individual, including Peter Doocy, but might make anyone sound like a stupid son of a bitch.”

Roberts, an anchor at Fox, tweeted after news of Psaki’s interview broke that Doocy “makes the decisions on what topics he wants to quiz you on, and develops the questions himself.”

“His philosophy is a basic tenet of journalism. Comfort the afflicted, and afflict the comfortable. If that makes all of us ‘stupid s.o.b.s’, so be it,” Roberts wrote.

Doocy has been repeatedly mocked for his questioning. In January, he asked Biden, “Do you think inflation is a political liability in the midterms?”

Biden was then caught on the hot mic calling him a “stupid son of a bitch” because it was obvious that inflation was a political liability. He later called Doocy to apologize.

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In her tweet, Psaki said she “also told a story about Peter’s grace last night” when she told “Pod Save America” that Doocy handled Biden’s criticism well following the hot mic moment.

“I was not being critical of him or any reporter at Fox and instead was critical of the slant of some Fox topics,” she added.

In a statement to The Hill, a Fox News spokesperson said Doocy’s “job is to elicit truth from power for the American public.”

“His questions are his own, he is a terrific reporter and we are extremely proud of his work,” the spokesperson said.