“If anyone gets any kind of idea in their head that taking away from Karine or her work, that’s really regrettable. And I’m very sorry that that’s any impression that anyone would have.”
—-National Security Council Coordinator for Strategic Communications Spokesperson John Kirby, a retired Navy rear admiral, responding to a bold reporter who asked what his role was at the White House, since “almost everywhere I go, I have Black people telling me that the reason you’re at the White House is to undermine the first female Black [press] secretary. So can you clarify that?”
John Kirby, the deft and articulate Pentagon spokesperson who was brought to the White House to stand in for Karine Jean-Pierre whenever possible since she is incompetent but can’t be fired, issued the above tersely, showing why he was called upon for the half-rescue mission.
I am simply working at the National Security Council, on national security communications. And with her good graces I’m able to come up here every now and then to talk to you about national security issue. That’s my portfolio. That’s where I’m limited. That’s where I’ll stay. And I do it at her invitation and with her approval to come up here. That’s the focus. I’m happy to answer national security questions and that’s about it.
Great answer! Diplomatic, elusive, pretending to deny the truth without doing so…he regrets that anyone gets the impression that he’s covering for Karine’s ineptitude (which is what “undermining” really means in this context), and he’s sorry that anyone has figured it out (though it is obvious to anyone who has heard Jean-Pierre babble and noticed the stark contrast with Kirby’s clarity and skill. Kirby proved what his role is while ducking the question and preserving Karine’s dignity, such as it is.