“PBS NewsHour” correspondent Yamiche Alcindor was the second reporter selected by the president to ask a question. Alcindor focused on the ongoing migrant crisis at the southern border with a query that came off as gushy to many critics.
“You’ve said over and over again that immigrants shouldn’t come to this country right now … That message is not being received,” Alcindor began. “Instead, the perception of you that got you elected — as a moral, decent man — is the reason a lot of immigrants are coming to this country and are trusting you with unaccompanied minors.
“How do you resolve that tension and how are you choosing which families can stay and which ones can go … and is there a timeline for when we won’t be seeing these overcrowded facilities run by CBP when it comes to unaccompanied minors?” Alcindor then asked.
Washington Post columnist Jennifer Rubin, the former conservative-turned Biden fanatic, appeared deeply offended by Alcindor’s line of questioning as she live-tweeted the press conference.
“Yamiche makes the statement unproven that his words set off the surge. This is factually wrong,” Rubin tweeted.
Alcindor fired back, writing: “Perhaps you haven’t interviewed migrants & asked them this Q, but reporting bears out what I said, which is that some migrants are coming because of the perception that Pres[ident] Biden is more humane & is allowing unaccompanied minors to stay. So unfortunately, you’re factually wrong.”
“Please see the Washington Post’s report of data,” Rubin replied while linking to a recent “analysis” from her paper. “Statistically the assumption much of the press has made is false. There is no uptick. This is seasonal. Could there be individuals? I guess. But review of the FACTS shows otherwise.”
Critics mocked the pair of MSNBC contributors over the frank exchange of views.
“Yamiche said the border crisis was happening because Biden is such a nice guy, and offered to help Joe strategize on getting rid of the filibuster. This was too harsh for Jen Rubin,” GOP strategist Matth Whitlock reacted.
“She thinks Yamiche was too tough on Biden,” Tablet Magazine associate editor Noam Blum similarly concluded.
Rubin went on to write a column praising the president for being able to “excel” at the press conference while the media, “did not succeed in knocking Biden off message.”