Fox News personality Brian Kilmeade, speaking on "Fox and Friends," could not seem to understand why the Biden administration would give an "important job" to a pregnant woman.
Kilmeade's remark came after news outlets reported that the Biden administration would roll out the Disinformation Governance Board, a new arm of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) that will specialize in countering the spread of Russian and other disinformation campaigns.
And the woman tapped for the top post within the new agency is Nina Jankowicz, a researcher, author, and commentator specializing in disinformation who previously served as a disinformation fellow at the Woodrow Wilson Center and as supervisor of the Russia and Belarus programs at the National Democratic Institute–and who happens to be nearly nine months pregnant.
You can hear Kilmeade's remarks in the video below.
Kilmeade suggested that the Biden administration could have found anyone else to take charge because he is "not sure how you get a job and then you just – you can’t do a job for three months."
“I’m not faulting her, but I don’t know why you would give someone a job that you think is so important.”
Kilmeade's remarks received pushback from co-host Ainsley Earhardt who, when Kilmeade noted that Jankowicz has held her job for "about two months," said:
“Well, I’ll defend her on that one, Brian. She has the right to have a baby and have maternity leave.”
Kilmeade's remarks came the same week that news outlets reported that a leaked draft opinion indicated the Supreme Court's ruling on Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization will move to strike down Roe v. Wade, the 1973 landmark decision that protects a person's right to choose reproductive healthcare without excessive government restriction, likely endangering other legal precedents regarding privacy and reproductive rights.
His statements angered many who came to Jankowicz's defense.
Kilmeade been in charge of appointing a disinformation expert to head the Disinformation Governance Board, it is likely he would have run afoul of federal laws for her beliefs about Jankowicz's fitness for work.
According to the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), pregnancy discrimination, which occurs when an employer discriminates on the basis of pregnancy, childbirth or related conditions, is illegal.
In fact, The Pregnancy Discrimination Act (PDA) forbids discrimination based on pregnancy in any manner related to employment "including hiring, firing, pay, job assignments, promotions, layoff, training, fringe benefits, such as leave and health insurance, and any other term or condition of employment."
The agency makes clear that employers "may not single out pregnancy-related conditions for special procedures to determine an employee's ability to work."