What Jen Psaki Really Thinks About the Media

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki speaks during the daily press briefing at the White House.
Photo by Drew Angerer via Getty Images
Peter Hamby
August 5, 2021

When I invited White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki on my Snapchat show Good Luck America, I wanted to learn a little more about the White House’s perspective on the infrastructure package moving through Congress and the nation’s protracted fight against Covid-19. But I was mostly interested in what a press secretary is supposed to know best: the press.

Psaki is a veteran of the Obama White House, which, like Barack Obama himself, viewed the Washington media as necessary but also self-important and a bit annoying, enthralled with the kind of ephemeral micro-dramas that found their way into Politico Playbook and Twitter every morning. The Obama team prided itself on utilizing new forms of digital media to reach audiences that don’t follow political news—and they rolled their eyes when blow-dried members of the White House Press Corps whined about the president’s appearances on new platforms that weren’t deemed serious enough by Beltway standards, despite their massive reach.