June 2nd, 2009
04:51 PM ET
14 years ago

Gibbs says no slight meant to Nancy Reagan

(CNN) - The White House meant no disrespect toward Nancy Reagan when it failed to invite the former first lady and vigorous supporter of embryonic stem cell research to a bill signing ceremony on the subject, press secretary Robert Gibbs said Tuesday.

"I think she speaks in real personal terms about the issue," Gibbs told reporters. "And I think her candor and her courage have been heartening and we certainly meant no slight to her whatsoever."

On Monday, Vanity Fair published an interview with Reagan on its Web site in which she suggested the Obama administration missed an opportunity by not inviting her to witness the president sign the bill allowing federal funds to be directed toward stem cell research - a policy Reagan has long promoted despite objections from many in the Republican Party.

"I would have gone, and you know I don't like to travel," she told the magazine. "Politically, it would have been a good thing for him to do. Oh well, nobody's perfect. He called and thanked me for working on it. But he could have gotten more mileage out of it."

Gibbs' comments also come the same day Reagan attended a White House ceremony as President Obama signed legislation authorizing the Ronald Reagan Centennial Commission.

She'll also attend the unveiling of a new statue of President Reagan Wednesday morning at 10 a.m. in the Capitol Rotunda and then share a private White House lunch with Michelle Obama.

Obama issued an apology to Reagan earlier this year after joking in a press conference that she held séances during her years in the White House - an apparent reference to reports she consulted with astrologists when her husband was president.

Filed under: Nancy Reagan
soundoff (299 Responses)
  1. MatthewDetroit

    You have to look at that clown barack and wonder why he handed 5 billion to ACORN and groups like ACORN.
    He is all about false registrations and voter fraud.
    Much like your guy Franken.
    Keep wining but the facts stand.
    The Dems were upset when GORE did not steal the election years ago. It only took you gents 8 years to perfect the art of the fraud.
    Now you have an election where people vote more than once and those that are not registered.
    Why did Barack drop charges against the New Black Panthers outside the Pennsylvania voting stations threatening people.
    The thug mentality won the election.

    June 2, 2009 05:49 pm at 5:49 pm |
  2. Mari( maybe one of my comments will be posted)

    @ Matthew in Detroit.......... You are the example of why the GOP is failing and alienating Americans!

    The lies you tell are disturbing.

    June 2, 2009 05:49 pm at 5:49 pm |
  3. Thomas

    David June 2nd, 2009 5:36 pm ET

    It's good to see that people from opposite ends of the political spectrum can work together. We need this kind of bipartisanship to meet the huge challenges that await us. For instance, we should use collective action to more intensely address severe poverty around the world. The Borgen Project has good info on the estimated cost of ending global poverty:

    $30 billion: Annual shortfall to end world hunger.

    $550 billion: U.S. Defense budget.

    So let's just get rid of the evil military and leave the country defenseless. Good idea idiot.

    June 2, 2009 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  4. Jim

    @ MatthewDetroit

    i see you are up to the typical republican-name-calling-without-information techniques.

    let me fill you in some of my background, matt ... if that is your real name.

    i am college educated. I have a bachelor's degree in physics. a minor in mathematics was required. I actually have enough math credits to have earned a bachelor's degree in math. i have taught math at a college.

    why don't you try using real facts instead of the pretend ones that you've made up?

    again I say to you ...

    please. put aside your prejudices and go from there.

    June 2, 2009 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  5. donttreadonme

    MatthewDetroit Great post. Rational comments are always welcome and are so much better than the spitefull blubber seen on here.

    June 2, 2009 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  6. Big Ed

    "Teleprompter" – You really have some anger issues. Seriously. Living in a dilusion and spitting out insults to anyone and everyone who dares to disagree with you. I feel sorry for you. I hope you can find some peace in your life.

    June 2, 2009 05:51 pm at 5:51 pm |
  7. MatthewDetroit

    Darth Vadik, CA.
    SO how is it going in California with the debt.
    How is it that california teachers laid off for 3 years are paid 80% of their pay.
    How is it that the Democratic Congress and Democratic Senate can not pass a budget.
    How is it that you cant cut spending in perfect California where you are supposed to be the model for the US.
    How is it that welfare is at a record high in CA. Your health care, housing, education, and other public rolls are covered with illegals and over spending. Waste and wasteful spending.

    June 2, 2009 05:52 pm at 5:52 pm |
  8. Dude

    Darth Vadik, seriously do you just like to hear yourself talk or read all your comments and think you are brilliant? Typical arrogant, smug liberal who has nothing to actually add to anything except insults. Wait...that's what I just did. OMG, I'm turning liberal!! Maybe I can get a job in the media now.

    June 2, 2009 05:52 pm at 5:52 pm |
  9. M

    If the postings on this site is any indication of the kind of minds that makeup this country, America is and has been doomed from the very beginning, especially that hate monger in Michigan. Really, is there any wonder why people of the world dislike Americans so much.

    June 2, 2009 05:52 pm at 5:52 pm |
  10. Thomas

    Andy June 2nd, 2009 5:36 pm ET

    Who fired the Air Traffic controllrs, when they strike for better working conditons,and made the skies unsafe

    The air traffic controllers were barred by federal law from striking. Learn the facts next time. Thanks for playing, though.

    June 2, 2009 05:53 pm at 5:53 pm |
  11. Yobee

    Didn't realize the hypocritical, manipulative, scheming old hag was still breathing. That's a shame.

    June 2, 2009 05:54 pm at 5:54 pm |
  12. Darth Vadik, CA


    Let's see you got the word ACORN in there, good, Franken, good, New Black Panthers (oh that's a new one but sounds good),

    Let's see what other Rush right wing nut job key words did you use,

    Gore, complaining that Bush stole the election.

    Heck Matthew, all you're missing is Rev Wright and Clinton and you'd get a passing grade in Rush's diddohead school for diddos.

    June 2, 2009 05:55 pm at 5:55 pm |
  13. donttreadonme

    Hold up …Bush signed a law that prevented any further use of Tax payer funds to create additional EMBRYONIC stem cells for research.

    They were able to use the EMBRYONIC stem cells already created and the ones created by private funding.

    Adult STEM CELLS were always in play

    June 2, 2009 05:55 pm at 5:55 pm |
  14. single mom

    Mrs. Reagan is a true lady, who also knows how to calls things as they are. The White House missed a HUGE opportunity by not having her there.
    Several have already commented on how this administration has to keep apologizing for things. It seems like they issue an apology at least once a week.

    June 2, 2009 05:55 pm at 5:55 pm |
  15. Dilligaf

    This is the most inept Administration ever. They are always apologizing for gaffe after another. Modern day Keystone Kops fronted by this idiot, Gibbs, the WORST press secretary ever. My God, he makes Dee Dee Myers look brilliant!

    June 2, 2009 05:56 pm at 5:56 pm |
  16. Sarge In Florida

    Matthew in Detroit. I love it when people from your party keep telling LIES after LIES...I say keep the great job up. There will be only two parties left..Independents and Democrats..BYE BYE RETARDED REPUBLICANS... I would also bet a million bucks that you listen to the Pill popping Rush and the rest of the IDIOTS?

    June 2, 2009 05:56 pm at 5:56 pm |
  17. I marriedmymother in New Jersey

    @donttreadonme.iI f you werent so sick you would be funny.

    June 2, 2009 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  18. MatthewDetroit

    I dont hate anyone and I am not a hate monger.
    I believe in the country. I believe in the constitution. I believe people should work hard and be honest. I do not believe the goverment is here to take care of us or solve all of our problems. I also believe that people need to take responsibility or fail at their own hand. It is not my job or pursuit to make everyone happy. People need to step up and take care of themselves and their own families.

    June 2, 2009 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  19. jane

    this was no over sight. HIs "forgetfulness" is very petty and childish. Mrs. Regan is and has been a voice for Stem cell research, how can you forget her?

    June 2, 2009 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  20. Darth Vadik, CA


    Let me guess, we have an actor for a Governor, kind of like we had an actor as a president once. Except our governor sold us out to Enron (yes he had secret meetings with Kenny boy of Enron before he became governor). Likeyou right wing nuts say, actors stick to acting, except you don't take your own advice.

    Go away and drink some cheap beer before I call up my posse down at the 8 mile and they put some sence back into you.

    June 2, 2009 05:59 pm at 5:59 pm |
  21. Proud Member..Party of No

    After reading the posts on this blog I'm convinced that a lobotomy is a prerequisite to joining the democrat party.

    June 2, 2009 05:59 pm at 5:59 pm |
  22. Loved the slight......

    Barack and Michelle have been waiting to do this one.

    June 2, 2009 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  23. MatthewDetroit

    Sarge in Florida,
    No lies just facts.
    You can look them up yourself but dont let the challenging research to be too daunting.
    The media does not tell the truth and is mostly slanted. You have to read and do your research.
    Look the numbers up yourselves.
    Listen to speaches from various politicians yourself.
    Many of their beliefs like Baracks are on line and you can watch the speaches. Just like the new Supreme Court Nominee, she really cant deny what she said. People will claim that it is out of context but she said exactly what she said. It is what she thinks. Take it for what it is.

    June 2, 2009 06:02 pm at 6:02 pm |
  24. jane mitakides

    Ah, she was there. You've got the photo. Maybe ought to think about taking this down. Makes CNN look a little dumb.

    June 2, 2009 06:02 pm at 6:02 pm |
  25. tra

    Well how nice for Nancy to make the significance of the signing of the stem cell Bill more about her and less about the Bill Signing. Poor taste to bring that up and claim it would have been good for Obama.

    June 2, 2009 06:02 pm at 6:02 pm |
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