Jen Psaki says she advises against Biden taking impromptu questions

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Jen Psaki says she advises against Biden taking impromptu questions and reveals she will be stepping down next year

  • Psaki said after a year it will be ‘time for somebody else to have this job’ 
  • She has held previous high-powered White House and State Department press jobs
  • Psaki also has young children 
  • She said President Biden’s off-cuff interactions with the press are ‘not something we recommend’

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki tends lets her daily briefings run long, but she doesn’t intend to linger in her powerful post – with plans for an exit in 2022.  

‘I think it’s going to be time for somebody else to have this job, in a year from now or about a year from now,’ she told former White House and Obama campaign colleague David Axelrod on his ‘Axe Files’ podcast.

Psaki, who has two young children, has already put in time in high pressure jobs, serving as deputy communications director and later State Department spokeswoman during the Obama Administration.

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said in an interview it would be time for someone new to fill her position after about a year

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said in an interview it would be time for someone new to fill her position after about a year

The former congressional and campaign aide has sought to restore some norms that predated the Trump Administration – holding regular daily press briefings. She has occasionally swatted down reporters, but avoided ‘fake news’ attacks of some of her immediate predecessors. 

She started part of her role as ‘kind of reaffirming and restating like what the role of government is’ after what she termed a ‘Game of Thrones’ period. 

Psaki revealed that President Joe Biden’s aides have not always succeeded in their efforts to steer him from answering reporters’ questions. Although he has held a single formal briefing, Biden regularly fields questions after speaking events at the White House.

Psaki said aides have not recommended that Biden hold off-the-cuff interactions with the press. He has fielded questions anyway

Psaki said aides have not recommended that Biden hold off-the-cuff interactions with the press. He has fielded questions anyway

She made the comments in an interview on former White House aide David Axelrod's podcast

She made the comments in an interview on former White House aide David Axelrod’s podcast

‘That is not something we recommend, ‘ she told Axelrod. “In fact, a lot of times we say “Don’t take questions,” she added. 

‘But he’s going to do what he wants to do because he’s the president.’

She spoke of the importance of talking about ‘what the role of agencies are and what the role of policy processes are and how a bill becomes a law.’

She has repeatedly tried to avoid getting cajoled into making statements on Justice Department matters, for example. On Friday, she brings Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen into the briefing room – after dodging efforts to get her to comment on interest rates from the podium. 

Traveling with Biden to New Orleans Friday was deputy press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre. 

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