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Incoming president Joe Biden is reportedly close to selecting a vocal Israel critic to serve as his White House press secretary.
Karine Jean-Pierre, a longtime campaign adviser and incoming vice president Kamala Harris's chief of staff, is currently the "top candidate" for the job, according to NBC News. Jean-Pierre was senior adviser and national spokeswoman for MoveOn.org, a far-left anti-Israel group that defends boycotts of the Jewish state, from April 2016 until August 2020, when she was hired as chief of staff for Harris.
Jean-Pierre has been a vocal critic of Israel, accusing the Jewish state of committing "war crimes" and, during the Democratic primary, celebrating Democrats who boycotted the American Israel Public Affairs Committee's annual conference in Washington, D.C. She praised those lawmakers for "boldly choosing to prioritize diplomacy and human rights over the power of a lobbying organization."
Team Biden's focus on Jean-Pierre is likely to rankle the pro-Israel community, which enjoyed strong support from the White House during President Donald Trump's tenure in office. As Biden makes early staff decisions, the selection of a prominent Israel critic could signal his administration is willing to make overtures to Israel's detractors.
MoveOn, the progressive group for which Jean-Pierre served in senior roles, launched a campaign during the Democratic primary calling on Democrats to boycott the AIPAC conference and the organization itself. "[Democratic] candidates should be prepared for push back regarding their involvement with AIPAC," a MoveOn spokeswoman told Politico at the time. The group's first candidate endorsements in the 2020 cycle were of the two leading anti-Israel members of Congress, Reps. Ilhan Omar (D., Minn.) and Rashida Tlaib (D., Mich.).
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RT @saraecook: The Trump administration halted the practice of releasing White House visitor logs--incoming WH Press Sec Jen Psaki says the…
kayleigh mcenany has left the white house ✨ may there never be a blonde press sec agin ❤️
The Trump administration halted the practice of releasing White House visitor logs--incoming WH Press Sec Jen Psaki… https://t.co/slqfRkUcGd
@maggieNYT Wait, wait. Are we talking about White House Press Sec. Kayleigh McEnany or Trump Campaign Press Sec. Kayleigh McEnany?
Worth reading the whole statement. How many other outlets should release the same statement? White House Press Sec?… https://t.co/a84tUR1aFN