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Obama Bids Gibbs Farewell

President Obama came into the briefing room this afternoon during White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs’ final go at the podium to thank him for his years of service to the Obama, as a senator, candidate and president.

“I don’t think we could have a better press secretary,” Obama said.

Gibbs fighting back a tear. Photo by Keith Koffler

The farewell to Gibbs seemed perhaps a bit akward amid the extraordinary events occurring across the globe in Egypt, an incongruity Obama sought to diminish with a quip. “Gibbs’ departure is not the biggest one today,” he said to laughter in the briefing room.

Gibbs first came to work for Obama during the 2004 Senate race after he won the Democratic primary.  “I still didn’t have a lot of money, so all I could afford was Gibbs,” he joked. Gibbs labored in the Senate press office and was a key player on Obama’s team during the 2008 presidential campaign.

Gibbs appeared somewhat emotional – not John Boehner emotional, but emotional – as the president offered apparently heartfelt remarks and presented him with a bit of history to take home.

"You'll love this. It's about me." Photo by Keith Koffler

The gift, albeit a bit self-referential – OK, actually, it’s really really self-referential – nevertheless seemed an appropriate and valuable bestowal that will be treasured by Gibbs and possibly fetch a fortune when his future grandson puts it up on Ebay.

Apparently, when Obama was preparing to hit the stage to deliver his career-making speech before the 2004 Democratic Convention, he hadn’t decided on a tie. After considering several, he grabbed one from Gibbs. Gibbs got the tie back today as part of a glass-encased plaque autographed by Obama.

Obama tells the story:

I mean, 10 minutes before we were about to go on stage we were still having an argument about ties. I had brought five, six ties, and Michelle didn’t like any of them. Axelrod didn’t like a couple of them, him being, you know, one of the best-dressed men in the world.

So we really valued his opinion.

And then somebody — I don’t remember who it was — turned and said, “You know what? What about Gibbs’ tie? What about Gibbs’ tie? That might look good.”

And, frankly, Robert didn’t want to give it up because he thought he looked really good in the tie. But eventually he was willing to take one for the Gipper, and so he took off his tie and I put it on. And that’s the tie that I wore at the national convention.

He has not said about – anything about this tie all these years. And so as a consequence, I wanted, here today…

(LAUGHTER)

… the — I wanted this on the record, on camera…

(LAUGHTER)

… that I am finally returning Robert’s tie.

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9 Responses to Obama Bids Gibbs Farewell

  1. It seems there was time in the Prez’s day to make nice and cut some jokes with MrGibbs who isn’t really going ‘away’ but only transferring to Chicago.
    Maybe plan another junket trip, don’t worry about the MiddleEast tumbling into chaos, joblessness here, inflation zooming…
    It just seems that this administration is always off-key and not focused on what is important or serious.

  2. The Gipper?

    Obama now referring to himself in Reaganesque drag? This prig will stop at nothing. He could not win being “Obama”, so he has to be someone else. He’s what my father used to call a “… well dressed Klansman.” A David Duke. Behind the facade, the humor, the good looking smile and demeanor, is a bigoted anti-Semite whose hatred for whites, Christians and those of Jewish faith know no bounds. He will co-opt any fascade, any style or dictum, take any name or nomenclature to pursue victory at the polls. He would sell his own family for votes if he could; Bill Clinton was willing to end his marriage to win the nomination a second time, all the while screwing a White House employee in the Oval Office.

    Democrats.

    Sigh.

  3. Speakijg of serious stuff–read the NYT today on how the pres had to straddle a rift between the Arab street and Hillary and her bunch. Young v old, etc. He was perceived as being on the side of the Tunisian protestors and now many of them are fleeing the chaos and leaving the country. I don’t know what to think on all this… Geraldo made an interesting pt (for him) saying in Latin America there used to be 18 dictators and now only Castro. Maybe it it Twilight of the Strongmen…I am waiting and seeing.

    • Star, great post.

      Were finally seeing the rot behind the Qu’uranic Qurtain. Islamic dictators mirror that of any bannana republic in Central America and when you pull away the religious fascade you find a populace that lives in squalor, no jobs, despicable treatment of women and minorities … with political and religious leaders living in splendor while partying with $2,500/night prostitutes in Dubai and smoking the best hashish in casino’s in UAE.

      Instead of highlighting this disparity, the liberal main stream media chooses to blame the U.S. for “bankrolling this excess.” The liberal media will viciously attack Joel Osteen for a comment about homosexuality ( granted he has one of the largest AIDS programs in the country ) but remains silent about the slaughter of women and cultural minorities in Afghanistan, Tunisia, Algeria and Syria.

        • PS I saw that Google guy on 60 Minutes–he had been jailed and was pretty shooken up from it when he first got out. I wouldn’t feel completely safe if I were he. I am getting some whiffs of fairy dust from all this…or else, I am an old crab, either one.