Psaki claims COVID is ‘root cause’ for wave of looting incidents

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki on Thursday said the COVID-19 pandemic is “a root cause” of recent organized looting incidents across the country.

Psaki gave the surprising remark when asked at her daily briefing about large groups that have for weeks been descending upon San Francisco, Los Angeles and Chicago-area shops.

“Big cities are dealing with smash-and-grab robberies, a record number of police officers have been shot and killed this year. What is President Biden going to do about all this lawlessness?” asked Fox News reporter Peter Doocy.

Psaki at first pinned the blame on former President Donald Trump for not offering more funding to local police before turning the blame on the pandemic.

“Well, Peter, I would say that when the president proposed additional funding in his budget over the funding that had been proposed by the prior president to increase in support local police departments, make sure we keep cops on the beat,” she said.

“Does the president still think that crime is up because of the pandemic?” Doocy further asked.

“I think many people have conveyed that and also one of the … root causes of crime in communities is guns and gun violence. And we’ve seen that statistically around the country,” Psaki answered.

“So when a huge group of criminals organizes themselves and they want to go loot a store — a CVS, a Nordstrom, a Home Depot until the shelves are clean — do you think that’s because of the pandemic?” Doocy pressed.

“I think a root cause in a lot of communities is the pandemic, yes,” Psaki said.

The recent incidents featured groups converging on shops and making off like bandits — recalling widespread looting in May and June 2020 during nationwide protests and riots after the murder of George Floyd.

Unlike last year, the latest incidents generally aren’t linked to broader civil unrest and appear to be organized operations with theft as the sole goal.

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