Cornyn draws criticism for tweet questioning if Biden 'really in charge'

The White House on Monday brushed off a tweet from Sen. John CornynJohn CornynDACA court ruling puts weight of immigration reform on Democrats Schumer feels pressure from all sides on spending strategy Data reveal big opportunity to finish the vaccine job MORE (R-Texas) that suggested President BidenJoe BidenTrump endorses Ken Paxton over George P. Bush in Texas attorney general race GOP lawmakers request Cuba meeting with Biden For families, sending money home to Cuba shouldn't be a political football MORE may just be a figurehead because of his carefully calibrated media presence.

Cornyn earlier in the day shared a Politico story titled "The Biden White House media doctrine: Less can be more" and quoted a passage that notes Biden has done few cable news interviews, does not tweet frequently or with off-the-cuff commentary and mostly delivers scripted public comments.

"Invites the question: is he really in charge?" Cornyn tweeted.

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"I can confirm that the president of the United States does not spend his time tweeting conspiracy theories, he spends his time working on behalf of the American people," White House press secretary Jen PsakiJen PsakiSenators scramble to save infrastructure deal Overnight Health Care: New round of vaccine mandates | Health groups call for mandates for all health workers | Rising case count reignites debate over restrictions On The Money: Senate infrastructure talks on shaky grounds | Trump tells Republicans to walk away | GOP sees debt ceiling as its leverage against Biden MORE responded when asked about Cornyn's commentary at a briefing.

Psaki's remarks appeared to be a shot at former President TrumpDonald TrumpCuban embassy in Paris attacked by gasoline bombs Trump Jr. inches past DeSantis as most popular GOP figure in new poll: Axios Trump endorses Ken Paxton over George P. Bush in Texas attorney general race MORE, who was kicked off Twitter in January but spent his final months on the platform spreading misleading or false information about the 2020 election and at times shared material connected to the QAnon conspiracy theory.

Cornyn's tweet prompted broader blowback from Democrats and political commentators who hit Cornyn for promoting conspiracy theories about whether Biden is in charge and for suggesting the current president's lack of constant media presence is problematic given Republican senators spent four years dodging questions about Trump's Twitter feed.

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"Can the President govern without sending crazy tweets in the middle of the night, one of the highest ranking Republicans in the Senate asks? Yes, it turns out he can," Rep. Don Beyer (D-Va.) tweeted.

"Lord have mercy. You would think you would lauding Biden for this. So you are criticizing him for actually spending time on his actual job? Maybe you could consider doing that," tweeted Matthew Dowd, a former aide to George W. Bush.

Cornyn followed up his original tweets by noting he "posted the whole [Politico] story so people can read it for themselves, and highlighted a couple of excerpts."