White House Blames “Glitch” After Erasing Fight

A White House correspondent expressed dissatisfaction on Tuesday and hinted at taking legal action following a mishap with a recording of his intense conversation with White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre.

Simon Ateba from Today News Africa had an issue with the White House communications team after his recent time in the James S. Brady Press Briefing Room. 

The spat, involving Jean-Pierre threatening to leave, was removed from the live stream on Monday, leading to accusations of censorship.

Ateba has expressed his difficulties while trying to perform his job, mainly when the administration seems to evade responsibility actively.  He has said he is Black, an immigrant, and the little guy. He said he was just trying to do his job.

Ateba inquired if they would be allowed to ask questions, mentioning past discrimination for the past nine months.

Jean-Pierre responded that if his behavior continued, the press briefing would end because it was incredibly rude.

However, the tense exchange that included correspondent April Ryan siding with the press secretary appeared as though it had been erased from the record online.

According to the White House, the missing portion was due to an encoder error that affected the live stream on YouTube. It was a “glitch.”

Monday’s bout was another example of the ongoing conflicts between Ateba and Jean-Pierre, as the correspondent has consistently been ignored for questions. The suppression campaign against him even blocked him from the White House Correspondents’ Association Dinner in April, making him the only member to face such a snub.

Ateba expressed his concern again regarding President Joe Biden’s administration’s claim of strengthening ties with Africa, noting the frequent sidelining of the only African journalist in the WHCA.

Jean-Pierre was not present at Tuesday’s briefing. White House deputy press secretary Olivia Dalton stood behind the podium in her place for the first time.