- The Washington Times - Tuesday, October 19, 2021

White House press secretary Jen Psaki came under fire on Tuesday after joking that it’s a “tragedy” some people may have to wait longer for their treadmill to arrive amid the supply-chain crisis that has disrupted global economies.

“The tragedy of the treadmill delayed,” Ms. Psaki laughed when pressed about the supply-chain crisis during her daily press briefing.

Some on Twitter savaged Ms. Psaki for her remarks.

“Stores are running out of food, medical supplies, supply driving inflation but Psaki reduces real world problems down to the example of a treadmill for a chuckle. Hoo boy,” wrote conservative talk show host Dana Loesch.

Ms. Psaki was asked what the administration is doing to address supply-chain disruptions and the potential that store shelves could be barren this holiday shopping season. She was also pressed on why President Biden didn’t move sooner to address the chaos, or whether the administration didn’t expect the crisis to worsen.

“Well, that’s not actually true,” Ms. Psaki responded. “The president formed a task force at the very beginning of his administration.”

“And what we know about the global supply-chain issues is that they are multifaceted,” she said. “Right now we’ve been focusing on the ports and issues at the ports and what leaders at these ports will tell you is that they’ve seen an increase in volume dramatically as it relates to last year — 20% to 30% increase in volume.”

Ms. Psaki also said the administration has provided COVID-19 vaccines to countries where manufacturing sites are experiencing worker shortages. She said the White House has pushed state motor vehicle departments to expedite issuing commercial driver’s licenses to get more truckers on the road.

• Jeff Mordock can be reached at jmordock@washingtontimes.com.

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