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White House Spox Calls Reporters “Disrespectful” for Interrupting Fauci’s Final Press Conference

During Dr. Anthony Fauci’s final news conference as the chief medical adviser on Tuesday, White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre yelled down a few reporters, labeling them “disrespectful,” before finally screaming, “I’m done with you right now.”White House Spox Calls Reporters “Disrespectful” for Interrupting Fauci’s Final Press Conference

After Fauci responded to a query regarding COVID-19 holiday precautions, Daily Caller reporter Diana Glebova made an effort to persuade the infectious disease specialist to address her query about the coronavirus’s historical context. (For right-wing media, the unverified theory that the virus was created and leaked from a Wuhan lab has long been a contentious topic.)

Steven Nelson of the New York Post jumped on Glebova’s inquiry, and Jean-Pierre rushed in to reprimand the two reporters. Hold on, please! Steven, I didn’t call on you,” the press secretary yelled. A short while later, Glebova tried to pose her question again, but Jean-Pierre interrupted her and reprimanded her in front of the press corps.

“This is a procedure. I’m not criticizing shouters, the Biden spokesperson insisted. “You’re treating our guests disrespectfully, as well as treating your coworkers disrespectfully. If you yell, I won’t call on you and you’re wasting time away from the job since Dr. Fauci has to depart in a few minutes. I’m through. I’m not going to argue with you back and forth.

Jean-Pierre may have intended to avoid a confrontation with the Daily Caller reporter, but she soon found herself in a dispute with an old adversary. In spite of Jean-Pierre calling for Jeremy Diamond, Today News Africa’s Simon Ateba interrupted the CNN reporter and shouted at the White House spokesman to let Glebova ask Fauci her questions.

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“She has a good point! She is inquiring about COVID’s beginnings. The best person to respond to that query is Dr. Fauci, Ateba shouted. I understand your concern, but we’re not handling things the way you’d like. Ateba continued to argue with Jean-Pierre after she fired back at her.

I’m done, Simon! I’m done, Simon,” she declared. I’m done with you right now, Simon! … You are interfering with your coworkers’ time. Ateba has developed a reputation as somewhat of a gadfly in the White House press room in recent years, drawing attention for his outbursts, contentious news conference interactions, and occasionally absurd questions. After his colleagues White House reporters complained to Jean-Pierre about the questions he asked, Ateba only last month claimed that the White House communications team had “blacklisted” him.

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