White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki is being asked whether President Joe Biden agrees with Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.), who called for protesters to be “more confrontational” if former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin is acquitted of murdering George Floyd.
CNN’s Kaitlan Collins asked Psaki during a press conference on Monday, “Does the president agree with what she said about getting more confrontational?”
“He has been very clear that he recognizes the issue of police violence against people of color, communities of color, is one of great anguish, and it’s exhausting and quite emotional at times,” Psaki responded.
She continued, “His view is also that exercising First Amendment rights and protesting injustice is the most American thing that anyone can do. But as he also always says, protests must be peaceful. That’s what he continues to call for and what he continues to believe is the right way to approach responding.”
Watch the video below:
WATCH: Instead of just saying "No," Jen Psaki reads a pre-scripted answer about peaceful protests when asked by CNN's @kaitlancollins whether Biden agrees with Maxine Waters calling for rioters to get "more confrontational" with law enforcement: pic.twitter.com/VQTJf4kXTV
— John Cooper (@thejcoop) April 19, 2021
Waters attend a police brutality protest in Brooklyn Center, Minnesota, on Saturday, where she said, “We’re looking for a guilty verdict. And we’re looking to see if all of the talk that took place and has been taking place after they saw what happened to George Floyd, if nothing does not happen, then we know that we’ve got to not only stay in the streets, but we’ve got to fight for justice.”
When asked what protesters should do if Chauvin, who is facing murder and manslaughter charges, is acquitted, she said, “We’ve got to stay on the street, and we’ve got to get more active, we’ve got to get more confrontational. We’ve got to make sure that they know that we mean business.”
Additionally, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) accused Waters of “inciting violence in Minneapolis” and called on House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) to “act against this dangerous rhetoric.” He also said he would “bring action this week” if Pelosi did not act.
Biden has called for protests to remain peaceful in the wake of the fatal shooting of Daunte Wright, 20, a Black man, in Brooklyn Center, Minnesota.
“I want to make it clear again: There is absolutely no justification, none, for looting. No justification for violence. Peaceful protest is understandable,” Biden said.
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