Lauren Boebert slammed for calling first Black gay White House press secretary a ‘DEI hire’

Republican Lauren Boebert (left) and White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre

Lauren Boebert is facing a backlash after calling Karine Jean-Pierre, the first Black gay woman to serve as White House press secretary, a “DEI hire”.

The term DEI, which stands for diversity, equity and inclusion, is used to describe policies and programmes that promote the representation and participation of different groups of individuals, such as people of different ages, races, ethnicities, abilities, disabilities, genders, religions, cultures and sexual orientations.

Hard-line Republican congresswoman Boebert used the term in a X/Twitter post on Tuesday (2 July), in which she said she “couldn’t care less” what the White House press secretary had to say.

“[Jean-Pierre’s press briefing is] between 10am [and] 4pm which means ‘president’ Joe Biden supposedly should be coherent enough to take a few questions from the press,” Boebert wrote.

“Instead, Americans are supposed to listen to the discredited DEI hire. Pass.”

Lauren Boebert, pictured on the White House steps.
Lauren Boebert called Karine Jean-Pierre a “DEI” hire. (Getty)

Boebert’s comments have been criticised by other X users, with one person branding the politician “ugly as sin on the inside”, and another adding: “You have a lot of nerve nasty lady.”

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Another X user wrote in reply: “Lauren gets paid to be rude on social media – expect more from your representative – vote her OUT.”

Jean-Pierre became the first Black and LGBTQ+ White House press secretary in 2022. Before that she was the deputy, and has a master’s degree in public affairs from the School of International and Public Affairs at Columbia University – an Ivy League institution.

Karine Jean-Pierre in the White House press room.
Karine Jean-Pierre is the first Black and openly queer White House press secretary. (Getty)

She was a regional political director during Barack Obama’s 2008 presidential campaign, becoming the White House’s political director for the Office of Political Affairs during his first term.

Regarded as a progressive force in US politics, Jean-Pierre has also served as chief of staff for vice-president Kamala Harris, worked on the Biden presidential campaign, and has a history of political punditry as a senior advisor for – a political action committee.

Boebert, by comparison, dropped out of high school in her senior year, although she has since earned accreditation equivalent to a high-school diploma.

This isn’t the first time staunch Donald Trump fan Boebert has been criticised for her attacks on LGBTQ+ politicians. Last year, she turned her attention to transportation secretary – and former presidential candidate – Pete Buttigieg, who is gay.

Following a serious train derailment in Minnesota, Beetlejuice fan Boebert said: “When we had a real transportation secretary instead of a DEI sympathy hire, this didn’t happen every day.”

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