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Kayleigh McEnany praised Joe Biden and argued that he would pose a challenge to Donald Trump before she worked at the White House as press secretary, CNN reported on Monday.
In an interview from 2015, McEnany described Biden as “funny and likable” and said he “can resonate with the middle class” in an appearance on Fox Business.
In another 2015 slot, she also said that Biden’s “man of the people” image would be a problem if Trump came off as a “tycoon” thanks to his wealth, CNN reported her as having told New York radio station AM970.
The comments come from before McEnany worked for Trump when, like many Republicans, she was openly critical of Trump, then one of many Republicans fighting for the party nomination.
In her work as Trump’s press secretary in the months since Biden won the 2020 Democratic nomination, she has frequently repeated the president’s attack lines on Biden.
In her 2015 comments to Fox Business, McEnany, was comparing Biden with then-Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton.
She predicted that Biden would become the Democratic nominee for 2016 rather than Hillary Clinton. Biden ultimately did not declare himself a candidate in that cycle, and Clinton won the nomination.
McEnany said: “The juxtaposition I just think will be crazy when you have Joe Biden here who’s funny and likable and can resonate with the middle class,” she said. “He really can speak to the average everyday American versus Hillary Clinton who’s cold and somber.”
As a commentator in 2015, McEnany appeared on outlets like CNN and Fox Business and fiercely criticized Trump several times, as CNN reported.
She described Trump’s attacks on Mexicans as “racist” after early in his campaign he said “Some are good and some are rapists and some are killers,” per CNN.
And she favored Biden’s chances against him in 2015 comments made on New York local radio station AM970, CNN reported.
“I think the Republicans run into a problem if it is Joe Biden and if it is maybe a Trump on the other side,” CNN reported her as saying.
“His gaffes — as much as we make fun of them — to a certain extent they make him look human … he’s likable,” CNN reported her as saying.
Asked who would be the tougher candidate for Trump to beat between Clinton and Biden, she said “probably Joe [Biden].”
Soon after Trump won the GOP nomination, she became a spokesperson for the Republican National Committee and declared her support.
Her words in 2015 are a marked contrast to her position on Biden now.
On her personal Twitter account, the press secretary has echoed Trump attack lines on Biden, describing him as “sleepy” and “owned by China.” In one tweet after the first presidential debate, she posted that he was “WEAK and RATTLED!”
Yet ANOTHER day when Sleepy Joe Biden told the press to go home at 9:22 AM because he was done for the day.Joe’s running to the kitchen for a snack and not running for the presidency!
— Kayleigh McEnany (@kayleighmcenany) September 22, 2020
Business Insider has contacted the White House Press Office for comment but did not immediately receive a reply.
In comments made to CNN, McEnany said that she had since become aware of Biden’s “profound personal corruption” and said that he has become “an empty vessel for the liberal elites and far left.”
The Trump campaign has repeatedly accused Biden of corruption linked to his son Hunter’s activities in Ukraine and China — accusations which have largely failed to hold water.