President Donald Trump abruptly ended his Monday press conference after a contentious exchange in which he asked an Asian-American journalist to “ask China” about her question and then refused to take a query from another White House reporter.
What We Know:
- Weijia Jiang, a White House correspondent for CBS News, asked the President why he sees coronavirus testing as a global competition when more than 80,000 Americans have died.
- “Maybe that’s a question you should ask China,” Trump told Jiang, who was born in China and immigrated to the United States when she was two years old. “Don’t ask me. Ask China that question, OK?”
- Trump attempted to swiftly move on by calling on Kaitlan Collins, a White House correspondent for CNN, but a determined Jiang interjected with a follow-up remark and question.
- Reactions online such as one from Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders called the exchange “pretty pathetic” and wrote on Twitter that Trump “is a coward who tears down others to make himself feel powerful.”
- Trump viciously attacks NBC News reporter in extended rant after being asked for message to Americans worried about coronavirus Some critics said Trump’s remarks toward Jiang were racist. It wouldn’t be the first time Jiang was confronted by racist remarks at the White House.
- Jiang wrote on Twitter in March that a White House official, who she did not name, had referred to the coronavirus as the “Kung-flu” to her face. Other critics suggested the exchange was laced with sexism.
“The President’s unprofessionalism is always revealed most clearly when he is interacting with female reporters,” tweeted Olivia Nuzzi, Washington correspondent for New York magazine. A CNN spokesperson declined to comment. A spokesperson for CBS News did not immediately respond to a request for comment.