With the State Department’s evaluation of the Keystone XL pipeline in a seemingly never-ending state, spokeswoman Jen Psaki continued to duck questions on the issue during a contentious briefing on Tuesday afternoon.
During a back-and-forth with the AP’s Matt Lee, Psaki refused to acknowledge whether all eight agencies submitted their reports and recommendations for the pipeline, which were due Monday. Psaki’s push back led Lee to question Psaki over the Obama administration’s claim to be the most transparent administration, asking “what happened to this transparency idea?”
“Did all eight actually submit them by the deadline?” Lee asked initially.
“We are not going to confirm, we treat them as internal recommendations.” Psaki said. “I’m not going to confirm whether or not we received them. They are not mandated. The one’s we have received will be factored into the consideration process.”
Lee and others members of the press followed-up by peppering Psaki with questions. The former Obama campaign press secretary repeated that the State Department is treating them as “internal recommendations.”
“I don’t understand why you can’t say if all eight submitted them or not,” Lee said, adding that he wasn’t asking for the contents of the reports.
“What happened to this transparency idea? I don’t get it,” Lee told Psaki. “I’m not asking what’s in the report.”
“When you say internal process, that really means secret and not transparent, right?” Lee added to the spokeswoman.