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Biden Press Secretary Pick Psaki Instructs Press to Cover Jan. 6 Joint Session as ‘Merely a Formality’

Neil Campbell
Neil lives in Canada and writes about society and politics.
Published: January 2, 2021
Then-U.S. State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki conducts her daily briefing for reporters on June 16, 2014 at the State Department in Washington. (Image: PAUL J. RICHARDS/AFP via Getty Images)
Then-U.S. State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki conducts her daily briefing for reporters on June 16, 2014 at the State Department in Washington. (Image: PAUL J. RICHARDS / AFP via Getty Images)

Presidential candidate Joe Biden’s pick for White House Press Secretary, Jen Psaki, has described the Jan. 6 Joint Session of Congress — where the nation’s legislative branch will ultimately decide whether to accept President Trump’s slate of electors or officially declare Biden President-elect — as “merely a formality.”

Psaki made her comments to reporters at a virtual press conference on Dec. 30.  

A former CNN contributor, Psaki emphasized her opinion, saying that the crucial Joint Session “certainly should be treated as such by people who are covering it.”

“And regardless of whatever antics anyone is up to on Jan. 6, President-elect Biden will be sworn in on the 20th.”

Wikipedia has already designated Psaki as “34th White House Press Secretary” stating she is “assuming office Jan. 20” and declaring her as successor to President Trump’s press secretary, Kayleigh McEnany. 

Psaki has served previously in the U.S. government as travelling press secretary for Barack Obama during his 2008 presidential campaign. After Obama won, she became Deputy Press Secretary and then Deputy Communications Director in 2009.

In 2011, she left the White House and became Senior Vice President and Marketing Director at lobbyist group Global Strategy Group. She returned to the Obama administration in 2012 as Press Secretary for his re-election bid. In 2013, Psaki was promoted to spokeswoman for the U.S. Department of State. 

According to Wikipedia: “In November 2020, Psaki left CNN and joined the Biden-Harris transition team.”

In September of 2019, Psaki demonstrated her abilities as a spin doctor when she criticized Biden on CNN as “out of touch” with the Democratic electorate.

On Nov. 29, Matt Wolking, Deputy Director of Communications for Rapid Response for President Trump’s 2020 campaign, posted a photo of a grinning Psaki “hugging Russia’s Foreign Minister and Russia’s chief foreign affairs propagandist while wearing a pink hammer and sickle hat.”

Another photo of the event taken from a separate angle was posted by Russia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs official Twitter account in 2014. 

A “fact check” posted by USA Today on Dec. 1 defended Psaki’s donning the headgear, claiming that “though it’s difficult to decipher, the logo on the hat — a traditional furry ‘ushanka’ hat — resembles the hammer and sickle.”

The logo, however, does not “resemble” a hammer and sickle. In Wolking’s Twitter thread he posts a close up of the logo on the hat showing clearly the emblem of communist ideology.

“Yes, it’s the hammer and sickle,” Wolking emphasized.  

In a New Year’s Eve interview with NPR, Psaki said: “My boss is really the American people and there are different entities who are kind of serving the American people. Right?”

When asked about how she intends to handle the “right-wing media ecosystem,” she stated: “We’re not going to allow the briefing room to be a platform for propaganda, and we will shut that down as needed as well.”

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