Reuters reporter Andrea Shalala asked White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki whether or not President Joe Biden’s administration planned to investigate the “right-wing forces” responsible for supporting Canada’s Freedom Convoy.
Shalala asked the question during Monday’s White House press briefing following weekend reports that crowdsourcing platform GoFundMe had confiscated donations that were intended for the convoy of truckers protesting vaccine mandates and quarantine requirements in Canada.
Reuters reporter Andrea Shalala asks Jen Psaki if the Biden administration is investigating "conservative" and "right-wing forces" for providing support to the #FreedomConvoy in Canada.
Psaki says "we don't really have any update…or any investigation to read out at this point" pic.twitter.com/lq6aEdzWIJ
— Curtis Houck (@CurtisHouck) February 7, 2022
“This situation on the Canadian border and in Ottawa, the truckers protest — there does seem to be evidence that these truckers are getting support from conservative forces or right-wing forces in the U.S.,” Shalala began. “Are you investigating that at all? Is there any kind of involvement, you know, of U.S. authorities looking at the money flows going to these truckers, or are you concerned about it?”
Psaki began by pointing out that the protests had thus far not impacted Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) operations along the border — adding as an aside that she knew it didn’t address Shalala’s question directly but that others had asked about it and she wanted to make sure she made that information available.
She also noted that some shipments of goods coming to and from Canada had been forced to reroute due to road closures, but that all of that had been managed safely and effectively.
She then circled back around to Shalala’s question and said simply that the White House did not have any updates on that particular issue.
In recent weeks, a GoFundMe page set up to assist the protesting truckers had raised millions — and some had been distributed already — when the platform pulled the account and claimed that the protest was not an acceptable cause.
As The Daily Wire reported:
GoFundMe, the crowdsourcing fundraising platform used by a variety of political persuasion and causes, has released a statement saying that they will be shutting down the Canadian Freedom Convoy page that organizers had been using to raise more than 10 million Canadian dollars for individuals and truck drivers protesting Canada’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate.
According to the company, they now have “evidence” that the protest is no longer peaceful and is now an “occupation,” which violates their terms of services, although they did not specify what evidence they were referencing.
The original Freedom Convoy inspired a second group to amass along the Canadian border, and others may be in the works as well — in the United States and in the U.K.
A Facebook page quickly racked up tens of thousands of followers encouraging American truckers to start a “Convoy To DC.”
As The Daily Wire reported:
“‘We are part of many large groups who believe in our founding fathers,’ Convoy to DC stated in its ‘About’ section on its Facebook page. ‘We believe everyone has a voice. We support our freedom. Help us spread the word about this group and together we all can make it a better place. God Bless America.’”
The Facebook group calling for the U.S. convoy has amassed more than 90,000 members and followers, up from 67,000 on Sunday, based on media reports. While the group is asking for truck drivers and long haulers specifically to join the caravan, the page is filled with posts from non-truck drivers in support of the movement.
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