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Psaki Takes A Shot At AOC For Doubting That Organized Retail Thefts Are Happening: ‘We Don’t Agree’

   DailyWire.com
White House Press Secretary Jennifer Psaki speaks during the daily press briefing on December 7, 2021, in the Brady Briefing Room of the White House in Washington, DC.
NICHOLAS KAMM / AFP via Getty Images

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki took a shot at Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) during Tuesday’s press briefing over remarks that Ocasio-Cortez made about organized retail theft incidents that have plagued several major Democrat-controlled cities in recent weeks.

“A lot of these allegations of organized retail theft are not actually panning out,” Ocasio-Cortez claimed without evidence in an interview with The Washington Times. “I believe it’s a Walgreens in California [that] cited it, but the data didn’t back it up.”

A reporter asked Psaki about AOC’s remarks and comments from Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot (D), who appeared to pass some blame for the robberies on the stores for not taking better security measures.

“Does the President believe that organized retail theft is really happening?” the reporter asked. “And should it be on the stores themselves to take action to prevent it?”

“Well, we don’t agree,” Psaki responded. “And I think our actions and the work that we have had in working with the Justice Department, the FBI, and federal law enforcement show that we take — we’ve seen some of these extremely video — extremely disturbing videos showing retail thefts in both major retailers — as well as state and local leaders, like Governor Newsom, have identified this as a serious concern.”

WATCH:

TRANSCRIPT:

REPORTER: Real quick on crime and another topic.  Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot appeared to pass some blame onto retailers for these smash-and-grabs, saying that she’s disappointed that these stores are not putting security officers in place, having working cameras, and chaining up high-end bags. 

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez — congresswoman — said earlier this week also that she doubted allegations of organized retail thefts.  She believed it was a Walgreens in California that cited it, but the data didn’t back it up.  Does the President believe that organized retail theft is really happening?  And should it be on the stores themselves to take action to prevent it?

JEN PSAKI, PRESS SECRETARY:  Well, we don’t agree.  And I think our actions and the work that we have had in working with the Justice Department, the FBI, and federal law enforcement show that we take — we’ve seen some of these extremely video — extremely disturbing videos showing retail thefts in both major retailers — as well as state and local leaders, like Governor Newsom, have identified this as a serious concern. 

We agree.  That’s the reason why we have sent additional support from the FBI, providing additional assistance.  It’s one of the reasons why we have also been — the President and members of our administration have been longtime advocates for supporting and funding the COPS program, something where the President proposed almost $300 million in additional assistance through his budget from what it was last year, and why we have also provided money to get — provided assis- — provided financial assistance to get money to hire 50 more police officers through the COPS program that the President has championed in places like San Francisco and an additional 20 officers in Los Angeles. 

So, I think his record speaks for itself on this.  We are going to continue to advocate for supporting programs like the COPS program, ensuring that our law enforcement are good partners as we’re working to address these retail thefts across the country.

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