Politics

Jen Psaki breaks down in tears answering question about GOP attacks on trans kids

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki holds a press briefing on Thursday, Septtember 23, 2021, in the James S. Brady Press Briefing Room of the White House.
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki holds a press briefing on Thursday, Septtember 23, 2021, in the James S. Brady Press Briefing Room of the White House.Photo: Official White House Photo by Erin Scott

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki broke down in tears while answering a question about Republican attacks on transgender children during an interview with journalist Jessica Yellin’s podcast, News Not Noise.

Psaki gathered her composure and apologized to Yellin after answering, saying “Sorry, this is an issue that makes me completely crazy.”

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Yellin asked Psaki her thoughts on the recent attacks on transgender and gay kids. Was it blowback to the Supreme Court decision to legalize same-sex marriage, she asked. Or was it an “organized political attempt to create a wedge issue ahead of the midterms,” similar to GOP attacks on same-sex marriage during the last decade.

“Ding. Ding. Ding,” Psaki answered to indicate the latter. After warning that she needed to be careful how she replied so that she didn’t violate the Hatch Act like multiple members of the Trump administration did, she continued.

“But what I will say is the political games and harsh and cruel attempts at laws that we’re seeing in some states like Florida, that is not a reflection of the country moving to oppose LGBTQ+ communities, that is not what we see in data, that is not factual and that is not where things stands,” she said. “This is a political wedge issue and an attempt to win a culture war.”

“And they’re doing that in a way that is harsh and cruel to a community of kids.”

“Ahh I’m going to get emotional about this issue – because it’s horrible,” she continued before audibly sobbing briefly.

“But it’s like kids who are bullied and all these leaders are taking steps to hurt them and hurt their lives and hurt their families,” she said. “And you look at some of these laws in these states and it’s going after parents who are in loving relationships who have kids. It’s completely outrageous.”

Listen to “Beyond the podium” on Spreaker.

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