CNN’s Brianna Keilar confronted White House communications director Kate Bedingfield on the situation in Afghanistan and how the Biden administration plans to get people out.
During an appearance on CNN Friday, Bedingfield was asked if the Biden administration will get people out of the country.
Bedingfield replied, “The president has committed. We will get every American who wants to get out, out of Afghanistan, and we are working to move as many of our allies who helped us, who stood by us, who helped our servicemen and women get out as possible, and I would note that when he came into office, he moved to condense the visa process for SIVs.”
She continued, “This has been a priority to him to try to move people out of the country who helped us over the last 20 years. That’s what he’s focused on, and that’s what he’s working on doing.”
Keilar pushed back, saying she is hearing “that you are prepared to leave people behind.”
Bedingfield explained, “We are doing everything we can to get as many people out who want to get out before the August 31 deadline. That is the sole focus of the President of the United States and his team right now. They are doing everything operationally within their capacity to get out.”
She added, “The one thing I would want your viewers to take on… is whenever we began a mass evacuation like this, it was going to trigger chaos.”
Watch the exchange below:
The US has "evacuated 9,000 people since Kabul fell," White House communications director Kate Bedingfield says.
"This is an incredibly violent and chaotic scene on the ground… It's dangerous for our troops who are there working to get people out," she adds. "Speed is safety" pic.twitter.com/vioUFl8U1F
— CNN (@CNN) August 20, 2021
During Wednesday’s interview on ABC News, the president said, “If there’s American citizens left, we’re going to stay to get them all out.”
George Stephanopoulos proceeded to ask Biden, “So Americans should understand that troops might have to be there beyond Aug. 31?”
Biden answered, “No. Americans should understand that we’re going to try to get it done before Aug. 31,” adding, “If we don’t, we’ll determine at the time who’s left.”
Former President Donald Trump released a statement weighing in on the matter.
Statement regarding Americans trapped in Afghanistan from Donald J. Trump, 45th President of the Untied States:
"Leaving Americans behind for death is an unforgivable dereliction of duty, which will go down in infamy." pic.twitter.com/ZXHeYn9LBT
— Election Wizard (@ElectionWiz) August 20, 2021
“Leaving Americans behind for death is an unforgivable dereliction of duty, which will go down in infamy,” Trump said.
Truth and Accuracy
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.