White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki refused to say Friday how many breakthrough COVID cases the White House has experienced among fully vaccinated staff, instead demanding to know why a reporter needs that information.
Following reports that several vaccinated staffers and officials in the White House have come down with COVID, including at least one who was in contact with Texas Democrats who later tested positive, a reporter asked Psaki point-blank why the administration refused to say how many breakthrough cases have been recorded so far.
"This administration has long claimed that you’re trying to be the most transparent in history. If that’s the case, why won’t you just release the number of breakthrough cases you’ve had among vaccinated staffers?" the reporter asked.
“I think we’re in a very different place than we were six to seven months ago as it relates to the virus," Psaki said. "And as many medical experts have said, both inside and outside of the government, those who are vaccinated are protected from serious illness. Most are asymptomatic if they are individuals who are vaccinated who get the virus. We are in a different place in terms of the impact of individuals who may have breakthrough cases.”
“Why not just provide that number? Are you trying to hide something?" the reporter pressed.
"Why do you need to have that information?" Psaki fired back before segueing into CDC data unrelated to the reporters’ question.
A reporter challenges @PressSec on not releasing the number of breakthrough covid cases among WH staffers:— Daily Caller (@DailyCaller) July 23, 2021
REPORTER: "Why not just provide the number are you trying to hide something?"@PressSec: "Why do you need to have that information?"
REPORTER: "Transparency..." pic.twitter.com/POVmqkzEFr