NBC’s Kristen Welker Pushes Child Detention Criticism, Draws Sharp Response From Psaki

NBC News White House correspondent Kristen Welker followed Fox News reporter Peter Doocy’s lead when she asked Press Secretary Jen Psak...


NBC News White House correspondent Kristen Welker followed Fox News reporter Peter Doocy’s lead when she asked Press Secretary Jen Psaki to respond to unfounded criticism of a temporary migrant detention center for unaccompanied minors.

Psaki has spent several days fending off multiple attempts to falsely equate the opening of a temporary facility with the Trump administration’s horrific immigration practices — first by Doocy, then by Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, then Doocy again, and then Meghan McCain earlier on Thursday.

And at Thursday afternoon’s daily briefing, Welker joined in pushing the narrative, asking Psaki if the use of the facility constitutes a “failure” on the administration’s part, and also asking her to respond directly to AOC’s criticism.

“Some members of the Democratic Party are displeased with the way the administration is handling children who are being held at the border,” Welker said, then read Ocasio-Cortez’s tweet.

“This is not okay, never has been okay, never will be okay – no matter the administration or party,” AOC wrote on Tuesday.

“Is this a failure on the part of this administration?” Welker asked.

“Well, first I can’t speak to what ‘this’ is, that is being referred to,” Psaki replied, making an air quote gesture.

“Holding children in these detention facilities at the border,” Welker said.

“Well that’s not what’s happening,” Psaki said, and added “what is happening now is there are children fleeing persecution, fleeing threats in their own countries, traveling on their own, unaccompanied to the border. And our focus is on approaching this from the view of humanity, and with safety in mind.”

Psaki went on to add that “We had to open, reopen a new facility, that had previously been closed, because of Covid protocols. Because because we can’t have kids in beds next to each other, we need space-appropriate, it’s been revamped, there’s educational services there, there are health services and medical services. But our objective is to move them as quickly as we can to families that have been vetted and to of course reunite kids with their families.”

“How do you respond to Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, then, who says she sees these images and it’s not okay, from her perspective?” Welker asked.

“Well, look, we will work, of course, with Congresswoman Ocasio-Cortez on a range of issues and we look forward to doing that,” Psaki said. “What I am conveying from here is what the actual circumstance is on the ground, and the tough choice that we have had to make.”

“There are only a couple of options here,” Psaki said, and then she ticked through them.

“Either we send kids back to a very dangerous journey back to their countries, that’s not a good option, I don’t think anyone would support that option,” Psaki said. “We send them to families that have not been vetted, we’ve seen challenges with that in the past where kids have been trafficked, that is not a good option in our view. Our best option, in our view, is to get these kids processed through HHS facilities where there are Covid protocols in place, where they are safe, where they can have access to educational and medical care.”

This is the fifth time in three days that Psaki has given this same explanation.

Watch the clip above via The White House.

This is an opinion piece. The views expressed in this article are those of just the author.



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Newsrust - US Top News: NBC’s Kristen Welker Pushes Child Detention Criticism, Draws Sharp Response From Psaki
NBC’s Kristen Welker Pushes Child Detention Criticism, Draws Sharp Response From Psaki
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