It’s happened! New State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki did her first official briefing Monday and, best we can tell, while she seemed maybe a bit nervous, she did a fine job.
She also learned a very important lesson: State Department reporters at the briefings can be a bit humor-deprived. You have to help them.
Take, for example, this exchange with a reporter who complained that he had raised a question last week “and I’m still waiting for an answer.” The question was what was State’s account of a meeting officials had last week with a group of South Asian human rights activists.
“Your side of the story please?” the reporter asked.
“Yes, I apologize,” she said. “I don’t have anything new for you on that today. I will — I’m happy to check on it. And we’ll make sure the appropriate person is fired.”
There was a moment of confused silence.
“Just kidding,” Psaki said.
Some reporters started to laugh.
“That’s a joke,” she explained.
Note to Psaki: no kidding from the podium.