President Joe Biden cut reporters off from asking questions of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday, telling the foreign dignitary not to take any questions from the press pool during an Oval Office meeting.
According to Breitbart News Biden’s conflict with the reports came during a week when he was entertaining several international figures at the White House when he discouraged interaction between journalists and the officials, saying, “I think, with your permission, you could not answer questions because they won’t ask any questions on point,” Biden told Modi, referring to the American press.
In addition to asking the prime minister to not interact with the reporters, the president talked to Modi about how he didn’t appreciate the way the American press had been conducting themselves in recent months:
“The Indian press is much better behaved than the American press,” Biden said. “I gotta watch out; they’ll knock one of those down.”
Further questions about Biden’s comments were somewhat obscured, as the White House didn’t include Biden’s inflammatory comments about the press in official transcripts from the interaction.
This is the most recent infraction on the part of the president as regards to the White House press corps who he continues to dodge, sometimes avoiding questions altogether at the White House.
MOMENTS AGO: Staff orders news media to leave The White House as UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson speaks mid-sentence pic.twitter.com/MXg2m0o1hq
— Breaking911 (@Breaking911) September 21, 2021
Biden’s comments came on the heels of a Tuesday snub on the part of the president when he frustrated reporters during a meeting with United Kingdom Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who called on two reporters from the United Kingdom.
The White House officially blamed Johnson for the conflict saying that the prime minister did not inform staff that he would take questions, but that Biden was not upset by the snub, according to Breitbart News.
CBS White House correspondent Ed O’Keefe questioned White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki Wednesday, asking why the Americans were ignored.
“I think our relationship with the United Kingdom and with prime minister Johnson is so strong and abiding, we’ll be able to move beyond this,” she added. “But he called on individuals in his press corps without alerting us to that intention in advance.”
When asked how Biden feels about the slight she replied “I think the president has not spent a moment worrying about it.”
However, reports indicate that journalists present were “visibly upset” when Biden’s aides shouted at them to leave the room, at one point even shouting over the presidents’ attempts to answer a question. Journalists reportedly went to the press secretary’s office to “register a formal complaint that no American reporters were recognized for questions in the president’s Oval Office.”