May 16, 2022 - Politics & Policy

Jean-Pierre honors Buffalo victims at first White House briefing

Karine JEan pierre
Karine Jean-Pierre, White House press secretary, speaks during a news briefing at the White House on Monday, May 16, 2022. Photo: Al Drago/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Karine Jean-Pierre held her first briefing as the White House press secretary Monday, honoring the 10 victims of the weekend mass shooting in Buffalo.

The big picture: Jean-Pierre began the press conference on a somber note, reading the names and telling the stories of "the lives lost and forever changed in Buffalo."

The latest: Thirteen people in total were shot, 3 of whom are expected to survive. Eleven of the 13 people were Black, police said.

What she's saying:

"We recognize their lives today and those lost affected by gun violence this weekend in Houston, in Southern California, Milwaukee and communities across the country.
And we honor the bravery of those in law enforcement who responded quickly and with professionalism in Buffalo, and risk their lives everyday to protect and serve their communities
ā€” White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre

What to watch: Jean-Pierre previewed Biden's upcoming trip to Buffalo, scheduled for Tuesday.

  • "They will comfort the families of the 10 people whose lives were so senselessly taken in this horrific shooting, and they will express gratitude for the bravery of members of law enforcement and other first responders who took immediate action to try and protect and save lives," She said.

Jean-Pierre later during the conference pointed to the fact that she is the first Black, gay and immigrant woman to hold the press secretary position.

  • "I would not be here today if it were not for generations of barrier-breaking people before me. I stand on their shoulders. If it were not for generations of very, very breaking people before me, I would not be here," Jean-Pierre said.
  • "Representation does matter. You hear her you hear us say this often on this show. No one understands this better than President Biden," Jean-Pierre added noting the diversity of Biden's cabinet.
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