Psaki dances around questions about Biden, Harris reactions to Smollett hoax: ‘Any lessons learned here?’

Actor Jussie Smollett was recently convicted on multiple charges related to staging a hate crime against himself back in 2019. But while many saw it as a hoax from the start, members of the mainstream media and their cronies in the Democratic Party were quick to latch onto the story.

Among those who sought to use the situation to their political advantage were President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris, who were at the time campaigning for the White House. After the verdict was handed down Thursday, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki was asked if the two Democrat leaders had learned any lessons from their apparent rush to judgment — but according to The Daily Wire, she was more than happy to dance around that line of inquiry.

“Rushing to judgment”

It was Fox News White House correspondent Jacqui Heinrich who raised the issue during Friday’s press briefing. There, Heinrich made reference to tweets published by both Biden and Harris back in 2019 expressing support for Smollett in the wake of the alleged — and now disproven — assault.

“The president tweeted: ‘What happened to @JussieSmollett must never be tolerated in this country.’ ‘We are with you, Jussie.’ The vice president called it an ‘attempted modern-day lynching,'” the reporter said, according to The Daily Wire. “Since the guilty verdict, are there any lessons learned here on rushing to judgment when a crime is alleged?”

In response, Psaki pulled from liberals’ standard playbook by trying to turn the question back around to focus on Biden’s predecessor in the White House.

“I think there are lessons learned perhaps for everybody who commented at the time, including former President [Donald] Trump,” Psaki said, according to a White House transcript. “He said, ‘I can tell you that it’s horrible. It’s doesn’t get worse,’ in response to [a reporter’s] question about the trial — about the — about Jussie Smollett at the time,” the press secretary added.

An obvious hoax

Psaki went on to insist that the White House respects the jury’s decision. “Lying to the police, particularly about something as heinous as a hate crime, is shameful,” she said, according to the transcript. She added:

Instances of that need to be investigated fully. And those found guilty need to be punished. And false accusations divert valuable police resources away from important investigations. They make it harder for real victims to come forward and be believed.

Still, she emphasized that “accusations of hate crimes should be taken seriously, and they need to be fully investigated.”

“But that’s where everybody was looking at it at the time,” Psaki added. “But certainly knowing what we know now, it’s important to also note the danger of lying to police and lying about hate crimes and the fact that it diverts important resources.”

Lessons learned?

Try as Psaki might to suggest that everyone initially believed Smollett’s fraudulent claims, a new report from ABC News paints a different picture. A timeline of events put together by the news network shows the Chicago Police Department had become skeptical of Smollett’s claims within days, and swiftly shifted from investigating the incident as an actual hate crime to considering it a hoax.

So were there any lessons learned here? As far as Biden and Harris are concerned, it’s doubtful, at best.

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