On Fox News Sunday morning with Chris Wallace, multiple commentators discussed White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany’s comments to journalists in a recent briefing, in which she said that they didn’t seem to care about churches reopening or not. In discussing McEnany, it wasn't just her work that they were critiquing, but her daring, drive, and determination.
Wallace said that if he had been in a briefing when a press secretary told him what questions he ought to ask, it "wouldn’t go well."
Conservative pundit Jonah Goldberg said that McEnany’s behavior toward the reporters was "indefensible and grotesque." Goldberg went on to say that McEnany, a Harvard Law grad and a recipient of the Bruce J. Winick Award for Excellence, was nothing more than a "Twitter troll who goes on attack, doesn’t actually care about doing the job they have."
I loved this response from another intelligent, articulate conservative female, Amber Athey:
The accusation that McEnany, who is not only articulate and intelligent but young and gorgeous, was acting egregiously or like a Twitter troll by calling out journalists, turning the tables on them, and asking why they seem to want churches to remain closed so badly seems curious to me, if not grotesquely sexist. I’ve seen the "elite media," as she calls it, pile on her. Progressives hate her too because she’s a Republican—but now conservative men don’t like her either? Color me shocked.
Kaleigh McEnany is a savage, alpha female. How do I know? She has been living rent free in the heads of much of the mainstream media, progressives, and even a handful of conservative guys who just can’t stand her. Maybe those that hate President Trump think they should automatically hate his Press Secretary by proxy, but that hardly seems intellectually honest.
This isn’t the first time McEnany has handled a media hit or a press briefing like a boss.
A few days ago she asked reporters why they hadn’t asked more questions about Michael Flynn and the unmasking debacle.
"There hasn’t been a lot of journalistic curiosity on this front" she said to reporters in a briefing May 16 about Obamagate.
The hatred for McEnany seems to stem from a combination of ideology and good old-fashioned sexism. Of course, the Press Secretary is not just a pinch hitter for the President but many times, as in the case of Presidents who are less articulate than others, a slugger. McEnany is one such all-star and she isn't just gorgeous and young: I've seen her field questions then turn right around and ask reporters: Have you dug deeper? If not, why not?
Turns out, the mainstream, or elite media, is uncomfortable watching their inability to be thorough journalists mocked. They don't like when the onus is put on them to dig deeper into a story. They don't like when they fail to receive a pat on the head, as Obama’s administration often delivered, for just being a sycophant. Rather than remain passive, fearful, or overwhelmed, McEnany pushes back—and for that, she receives criticism from conservatives, progressives, and media alike.
As a conservative woman who has watched the mainstream media take the news of the day and ask misleading questions that result in bungled answers, or wince as I hear yet another question set up to lead to a "gotcha" answer by the President’s staff, I appreciate McEnany’s chutzpah and ability to not just answer the questions she’s asked, but redirect the narrative.
McEnany is aware, like most of the media is, just how much power there is in reframing stories. Much of the media no longer abides by the old mantra, "tell people what to think about" but instead just tells everybody "what to think and how to think it." Every time she redirects their narrative, she is trying to force them to tell the whole story, to reveal all the facts, and not simply the side that might malign Trump or favor the election of a Democrat.
Liberal democrats are the party of progression, so they say. Whether it's gender identity or women in power, they'll root for it. Only one problem: They don’t walk their talk. I have my issues with President Trump, but on this, he has proven to be a boon for female empowerment far more than others. Trump has hired more female advisors than the three presidents before him. Forbes said that Trump has appointed nearly 300 women in politics, judges, and ambassadors.
I'm not one to embrace identity politics, but hating the President’s Press Secretary because she’s a young, beautiful, intelligent, successful woman, seems like an inherent contradiction to a fundamental progressive doctrine that was supposed to adhere to feminism at all costs.