Fox & Friends co-host Elisabeth Hasselbeck confronted White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest in an interview Wednesday morning about what she called "aloof, apathetic and cavalier" verbiage used by President Barack Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry in response to ISIS attacks on France and the lives lost earlier this week. Earnest encouraged Hasselbeck to spend as much time on the president's actions as his words.
"Would you go back and ask for that this language to be changed, to reflect some sort of solidarity and intentional aggression toward ISIS?" she posed.
"To call this 'understandable,' or just a 'setback,' seems awful, at least to the American people."
Earnest said President Obama, according to transcripts, had called the Paris situation "sickening," and that he expressed his profound sorrow over exactly what had occurred due to the attacks.
Three minutes into the 10:55-minute interview, Earnest and Hasselbeck started talking over one another, disrupting the exchange.
"Elizabeth, if you want to have me on your show to ask me about something as serious as our national security, then you can ask me questions and give me the opportunity to answer," said Earnest.
She continued with stating, "Our president's words matter. It matters around the world. He called this a setback. Why?"
Earnest reinforced reminders of President Obama's actions after the attack on Paris of quickly calling the French President François Hollande to offer any support needed in conducting the investigation and carrying out any response they would choose to carry out. Hours later, President Obama convened a meeting among U.S. security team leaders, Earnest said, to ask what the U.S. response should be.
A CNN story after the Fox interview cited that Obama - who said that ISIS was "contained" a day before the attacks took place - has come under mounting scrutiny from Republican lawmakers and presidential candidates for his strategy to defeat the terror group.
Earnest also appeared on CNN"s "New Day" Wednesday, again defending the president's strategy and adding that while the United States "can apply significant pressure using our military" ultimately, "there's no military solution to this problem."
"If we're going to solve this problem, we need to address the political situation inside of Syrian and Secretary Kerry is making progress doing exactly that," Earnest told CNN's Alisyn Camerota.