Some Lesser Known Facts About Sabrina Siddiqui
- Sabrina Siddiqui, an American journalist of Pakistani descent, serves as a White House reporter for The Wall Street Journal in Washington, D.C. Sabrina was reportedly harassed after she asked Prime Minister Narendra Modi what was the status of the minorities including Muslims in India during his first state visit to the United States in June 2023. Later, while taking cognizance of the issue, the white house, in a press release, condemned these harassments.
- Sabrina was born into a Muslim family in the United States.
- After graduating from the Medill School of Journalism, Sabrina Siddiqui joined Bloomberg News, where she was part of the White House team. She also contributed to Bloomberg Businessweek, covering subjects such as higher education, personal finance, and venture capital. In addition to her work at Bloomberg, Sabrina took on the role of editor-in-chief for the South Asian News network, ‘Divanee.’ She later joined the Huffington Post (now HuffPost), where she spent about three years as a political reporter. During this period, she reported extensively on Congress and closely followed Senator Mitt Romney’s 2012 presidential campaign.
- Following her tenure at HuffPost, Sabrina Siddiqui transitioned to The Guardian as a political reporter. She covered the 2016 presidential election and provided comprehensive reporting on Hillary Clinton’s campaign. She was also assigned to Senator Marco Rubio’s team, offering detailed insights into his campaign strategy.
- In 2016, Sabrina Siddiqui joined MSNBC, an American news-based television channel. She undertook several roles during her time there, including hosting the podcast ‘Politics for Humans.’ Besides, she frequently appeared as a political analyst, offering commentary and insights on various political topics and events.
- Subsequently, Sabrina started working as a White House reporter for The Wall Street Journal in Washington, D.C. Her work primarily involves covering the White House and the US Presidents. She has been particularly focused on chronicling the presidency of Joe Biden, providing in-depth reports and analyses of his administration.
- Sabrina Siddiqui faced substantial backlash following a question she posed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi about the status of minority communities, particularly Muslims, in India during his first state visit to the United States in June 2023. Sabrina questioned,
India has long prided itself as the world’s largest democracy, but there are many human rights groups who say that your government has discriminated against religious minorities and sought to silence its critics. As you stand here in the East Room of the White House, where so many world leaders have made commitments to protecting democracy, what steps are you and your government willing to take to improve the rights of Muslims and other minorities in your country and to uphold free speech?”
Modi responded to her question with a sense of surprise, stating,
Democracy is our spirit. Democracy runs in our veins. We live democracy…our government has taken the basic principles of democracy…we have always proved that democracy can deliver. And when I say deliver, this is regardless of caste, creed, religion, gender. There is absolutely no space for discrimination.”
#WATCH | "We are a democracy…India & America both have democracy in our DNA. Democracy is in our spirit & we live it and it's written in our Constitution…So no question of discrimination on the grounds of caste, creed or religion arises. That is why, India believes in sabka… pic.twitter.com/orVkCVkLLf
— ANI (@ANI) June 22, 2023
In the aftermath of this incident, Sabrina faced a wave of severe criticism on the internet; however, many Congress members and White House staff came forward to publicly denounce the harassment that Siddiqui experienced. White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre offered her support for Siddiqui, stating,
We’re certainly here, at the White House, under this administration, committed to the freedom of the press, which is why we had the press conference last week. We certainly condemn any efforts of intimidation or harassment of a journalist or any journalist that is just trying to do their job. And so, I just want to be very clear about that.”
- Sabrina Siddiqui, an ardent fan of the Indian cricket team, took to Twitter in 2023 to share a photo of her and her father enthusiastically supporting the team. This post was in response to criticism she received after questioning Prime Minister Narendra Modi about the conditions of minority communities, especially Muslims, in India during his first state visit to the United States in June 2023. Sabrina sought to respond to her critics while simultaneously underlining her fondness for and ties to India through her tweet.
- Sabrina Siddiqui was one of two journalists who were selected to accompany President Joe Biden on a covert trip to Kyiv, Ukraine, in 2023; this trip was her first assignment following her maternity leave that she had taken just a month prior. Despite initial concerns about maintaining her breastfeeding routine during the journey, she decided to go ahead with the trip. To aid milk production while pumping – a process often stimulated by looking at photos or videos of the child – Sabrina had her husband, Ali, print some of her favourite pictures of Sofia, their daughter. She also packed Sofia’s cherished brown bear lovey and a favourite rubber ducky to maintain a sense of closeness to her daughter while she was away.
Sabrina and the other journalist on the trip, Evan Vucci from the Associated Press, were sworn to secrecy, and they were only allowed to inform their spouses and one editor at their respective organizations about the trip’s plans. Their cell phones were confiscated for almost the entire trip. After reaching Warsaw, Poland, Sabrina shared a tweet consisting of a photo of her breast milk, referring to it as the only souvenir she could bring back for Sofia from Kyiv.
- Sabrina holds a profound love for animals, especially dogs. She often shares his pictures with them on social media.