White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs today struck a relatively defiant tone, declining to apologize for remarks to The Hill newspaper demeaning the “professional left,” which he and other White House officials – and presumably the president- think is too quick to criticize the White House.
Speaking at today’s briefing, Gibbs offered the minimal mea culpa that he “could have said things slightly differently” and joked, “there’s no truth to the rumor that I’ve added an inflatable exit to my office,” referring to the Jet Blue flight attendant who quit the other day with a flourish.
He also noted, “I don’t plan on leaving.”
Here’s one of the exchanges today on the matter.
QUESTION: I mean, did you — did you misstep, did you put your foot in your mouth or did you say something that you meant?
GIBBS: I think I have both my feet firmly planted on the floor and nothing in my mouth to speak of.
QUESTION: Your esteemed substitute yesterday said that you answered honestly. Was this an honest correct answer that you gave to those questions.
GIBBS: I would not contradict my able substitute.
QUESTION: So this was an honest answer, you’re not – you’re not backing away from it?
GIBBS: I think many of you all have heard frustration voiced in here and around. Sure. I doubt I said anything that you haven’t already heard.
QUESTION: But this wasn’t a mistake, it was not something you said in error?
GIBBS: It was born out of frustration, but I don’t think it was – again, I think it was born out of frustration.
QUESTION: You stand by it? It’s private frustration that you expressed publicly and accurately?
GIBBS: Well, public frustration that was written down publicly.
QUESTION: Do you want to name any names, Robert?
GIBBS: I left my membership list back in the office.
So maybe Gibbs is not in such trouble after all. But I think he’s at two strike when it comes to infuriating liberals.