White House press secretary Jen Psaki responded to an ethics complaint regarding comments she made about Fox News amid reports saying she will join MSNBC after she leaves the Biden administration.
When speaking to Chris Wallace on the soon-to-be-ending CNN+ streaming channel, Psaki was asked about the ethics complaint and media reports claiming she will join the left-wing network. Psaki has not confirmed or denied that she will join MSNBC, and she continued to remain mum on the topic during the interview with Wallace.
“What I will tell you, Chris, and you know this from covering White Houses in the past, there are certain requirements of anybody who’s serving. If you are talking to or engaging, thinking about any future employment, which is normal. That’s a—what nearly everybody does who at some point will leave the White House,” Psaki said in the interview, which airs this week.
She continued: “I have gone over and above those requirements. I’ve received full counseling from the counsel’s office and I will continue to do that throughout my time here at the White House.”
Earlier this week, an ethics group known as Protect the People’s Trust wrote a letter to several White House officials, alleging Psaki violated U.S. ethics codes by disparaging Fox News in a podcast interview published last week.
Doocy, Psaki said in that interview, “works for a network that provides people with questions that, nothing personal to any individual including Peter Doocy, but might make anyone sound like a stupid son of a [expletive].”
The group also accused the press secretary of “demeaning” a “competitor of her prospective employer, while seeming to act in her official capacity,” referring to reports she’s joining MSNBC.
“Under federal law, it is a criminal offense punishable by up to five years in prison to willfully participate in any ‘particular matter’ in which an organization an employee is negotiating or has an arrangement regarding future employment has a financial interest,” said the letter, which was sent to the White House, the U.S. Office of Government Ethics, and the Department of Justice.
Psaki made no reference to MSNBC or future employment prospects. She also did not say when she was leaving the administration.
“I have nothing to announce about what’s next,” Psaki told Wallace. “I’m going to sleep at some point when I leave. I’m going to maybe read some fiction books. I’m going to spend time with my family.”