Former White House press secretary and Fox News host Kayleigh McEnany unloaded on President Joe Biden during a Monday segment of “Outnumbered.”
McEnany joined her co-hosts in a discussion about the heightening tensions between Russia and Ukraine — as well as the president’s comments from several days earlier that many interpreted as giving Putin a “green light” to move on Ukraine.
Guest co-host Brian Kilmeade pointed out the fact that tensions were also spreading to NATO allies, noting that Germany was not allowing other nations to pass through their airspace if they were providing tactical aid to Ukraine. That, he said, was emboldening Russian President Vladimir Putin because he could see divisions getting deeper and more entrenched.
“It’s not helping the scene and is energizing Putin to see the division between NATO allies,” he said.
“The Economist magazine points out that 100,000 troops might be the biggest buildup we’ve seen in Europe since the Cold War. I mean, this is where we are at. Very scary posture as we look at those troops in the border of the Ukraine,” McEnany agreed, pivoting to address Putin.
“Putin … is a shark who tastes blood in the water, and he senses weakness in his foe. And his foe, make no doubt about it, is the United States,” McEnany explained. “He watched that press conference last week, and he heard, ‘It’s one thing if it’s a minor incursion,’ he heard the President of the United States say, ‘More than likely Putin will go in,’ and more than that, he heard the President of the United States say, ‘There is nothing we can do about it.'”
“Yes, there are things we can do about it. President Trump put sanctions to the hilt on Russia, and you have the current Secretary of State saying, ‘Sanctions are a deterrent we’re not going to do them now.’ You have Biden broadcasting, ‘I’m not unilaterally going to send troops,'” McEnany continued. “Who gives the playbook to the enemy? That is what our country is doing right now and it is a terrifying prospect that we have this guy for three more years.”
“Wow,” Faulkner replied.
President Biden raised eyebrows when he said last week that the U.S. response to Putin would “depend” on whether any action he took against Ukraine amounted to a “minor incursion.”
Biden on Russia invading Ukraine:
“It’s one thing if it’s a minor incursion…” pic.twitter.com/BFp5jnJYPI
— RNC Research (@RNCResearch) January 19, 2022
Biden’s comments spurred such a reaction from both Republicans and Democrats that White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki joined Secretary of State Antony Blinken in attempts to clean up the statement.
“I can assure you that our allies and partners know exactly what the President’s position is. They knew what it was yesterday. They knew during the press conference. They knew after the press conference because we have been engaged closely,” Psaki said.
Psaki on Biden’s Ukraine comments: “I can assure you that our allies and partners know exactly what the President’s position is. They knew what it was yesterday. They knew during the press conference. They knew after the press conference b/c we have been engaged closely[.]” pic.twitter.com/zv1XD3ZAgm
— Curtis Houck (@CurtisHouck) January 20, 2022
Blinken, after failing to make headway with his Russian counterpart in person, joined CNN’s Dana Bash to discuss the situation further — and couldn’t give a direct answer regarding the possibility that American troops on the ground could be a part of the equation.
CNN’s Dana Bash, on the Russia-Ukraine situation: “Do you see any scenario in which more U.S. service members become involved here?”
Secretary of State Antony Blinken doesn’t give a direct answer, instead just saying NATO “is looking at very practical and important measures.” pic.twitter.com/HeuFhvemjp
— Justin Baragona (@justinbaragona) January 23, 2022