Today News Africa White House reporter Simon Ateba is one of the leading, if not the only, reporter in the White House press pool who regularly covers African politics.
While Today News Africa is targeted towards an African audience, it has started to gain an American audience due to Ateba’s confrontational style of reporting and him calling out unfair treatment by the Biden White House towards his news company.
As recently as last week, White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre got in to a heated exchange with Ateba as he was attempting to get a question answered.
White House Correspondent Simon Ateba Battles with Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre over Seeking Answers from Biden Administration https://t.co/5I7914pNUa via @todaynewsafrica
— TODAY NEWS AFRICA (@todaynewsafrica) April 21, 2023
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In an Op-Ed penned by Ateba shortly after the 2022 midterms, he admitted that he used to believe that the Republican Party was racist due to watching CNN, but has confronted racist attitudes more often in the Democratic Biden White House.
“In the Biden White House, as I have struggled to get access, to ask questions, to be treated with the same dignity as others, I came to realize that the Republicans were not the racists and the horrible, awful people I was told they were.” He says in the article.
Via Today News Africa-
Opinion – Nov 10, 2022: "When I first arrived in the United States, having watched CNN for years, I came to believe that the racists and the bad guys in the United States were the Republicans, the old white guys with no college degrees who live in the Midwest. But in the Biden… pic.twitter.com/XCjVvOLWHP
— Simon Ateba (@simonateba) April 27, 2023
On Wednesday, President Joseph R. Biden Jr. who is turning 80 years old this month, held such a sham press conference at the State Dining Room in the White House, the day after his party showed surprising strength at the polls despite rising inflation, skyrocketing crime and widening divisions across the nation.
“I’ve been given a list of 10 people that I’m supposed to call on. And you’re all supposed to ask me one question, but I’m sure you’ll ask me more,” President Biden told a room full of local and international journalists.
I was also there. It was the first time that I was allowed in. African reporters are never allowed in for Biden’s press conferences, even as he prepares to host about 50 African leaders in Washington next month to strengthen ties between the United States and Africa.
The room was full of white reporters. The White House is still 99.999 percent white, I noticed. There is very little diversity in there, even in the Biden administration. White House reporters are also mainly white, at least those who were in the room yesterday.