Al Jazeera reporter denies calling White House Press Secretary B-word at briefing
An Al Jazeera reporter is denying reports she called White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany a “lying b----” during Tuesday’s briefing, after a video of a heated exchange between the two went viral.
Al Jazeera English’s White House correspondent Kimberly Halkett said on Tuesday that she did not say “you’re a lying b----” to McEnany as the audio of the viral clip sounds, but instead “okay, you don’t want to engage.”
The disputed comment came after Halkett asked McEnany a question about the White House’s stance related to foreign involvement in US presidential elections.
The exchange became heated when Halkett interrupted McEnany’s answer, telling the press secretary that it was “getting off track.”
Halkett then attempted to ask follow-up questions to which McEnany cut her off and responded, “You’ve gotten two questions, which is more than some of your colleagues.”
Halkett, speaking through a face mask, then muttered the comment in question on a hot mic as McEnany began dialogue with another reporter.
The video has taken social media by storm, with users saying that they hear her say both versions.
Halkett responded on Twitter saying there was “a lot of misreporting out there about that briefing.”
“What I said was, “OKAY, YOU DON’T WANT TO ENGAGE.”
Thanks for asking @charliespiering ... there's a lot of misreporting out there about that briefing. The answer to your question is, I DID NOT. What I said was, "OKAY, YOU DON'T WANT TO ENGAGE." https://t.co/xmu5YR7gXr— Kimberly Halkett (@KimberlyHalkett) July 21, 2020
Other Twitter users weighed in as well. “I got to admit, depending on what I’m listening for – I can hear it both ways,” said one Twitter user.
“Literally listened to this on repeat and can’t decide. I can hear both,” said another.
Literally listened to this on repeat and can’t decide. I can hear both 🙊— P.C. (@conleymama) July 22, 2020
McEnany, who is a Harvard Law School graduate, has not publicly commented on the incident.