August 11th, 2010
07:41 PM ET
12 years ago

Gibbs stands by his words with feet on the ground and not in his mouth

Washington (CNN) - White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs is standing by his critique of what he called the "professional left."

"I think I have both my feet firmly planted on the floor and nothing in my mouth to speak of," Gibbs said Wednesday during his daily briefing, after being asked if he had put his foot in his mouth.

In an interview with The Hill newspaper earlier this week, Gibbs went public with his private frustration over harsh criticism from his party's base.

"I hear these people saying he's [Obama's] like George Bush," Gibbs told the paper. "Those people ought to be drug tested."

The White House has been under fire from liberal Democrats frustrated that some campaign promises have not been kept, including the closing of the Guantanamo Bay detention facility and a health care overhaul that didn't include a so-called public option.

In defending the administration's agenda, Gibbs focused on accomplishments, and insisted that "a lot of the issues that Democrats throughout the party have worked to see happen have come to fruition."

But his blunt swipe at his own party, so close to the midterm elections has rattled some Democrats.

The controversy is providing ammunition for both Republicans and Democrats.

The Progressive Change Campaign Committee is trying to raise money off Gibbs comments. In an email, the liberal political advocacy group called on supporters to "chip in $4 dollars to support our work."

Gibbs was asked at Wednesday's briefing about media reports that Democratic Rep. Keith Ellison called for his resignation. Ellison released a statement Tuesday night calling those reports "inaccurate."

The White House spokesman, who has become adept at using humor to deflect criticism, said "there's no truth to the rumor that I've added an inflatable exit to my office."

The joke was a play on the Jet Blue Flight attendant who exited his flight in such dramatic fashion earlier this week.

(Updated at 8:05 p.m. ET)

Filed under: Democrats • PCCC • Robert Gibbs
soundoff (11 Responses)
  1. Shirley in California

    Mr. Gibbs you are 100% right! Democrats don't know what they want. Our president cannot please everyone. People such as Keith Olbermann and Michael (fat boy) Moore make me sick. Every chance they get – they are putting our president down. What do you want more republican rule or are you willing to give our president a chance to make good on his campaign promises and clean up some of this mess (he inherited)? He doesn't do everything my way either/nor should he. For goodness sakes – vote republican IF you think they will make your lives easier. Personally, I'm sick of the "professional left."


    August 11, 2010 07:54 pm at 7:54 pm |
  2. Val in MA

    What a goofball! That's the White House spokesman for you folk, immature and green (as in inexperienced) – just like our president.

    August 11, 2010 08:14 pm at 8:14 pm |
  3. Howard Nash

    Gibbs is correct. Comparing Obama to Bush is like comparing ice cream to dog poop. Will they ever understand, how close Bush came to destroying our country?

    August 11, 2010 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  4. Susan

    I totally agree with Robert Gibbs. I consider myself a "pragmatic progressive". While I adhere to progressive values, I also am a realist and understand what it takes to get things done in Washington. The progressive left was so hungry for change but also incredibly naive about how that happens. Are they watching the same cable channels I am? Are they seeing how far the Republicans will go to screw up Obama, regardless of the cost to the middle class or poor?

    They're constant complaining will achieve one thing – low vote turnout in November. And, that will allow the Republicans to regain power. The left doesn't have a clue what is in store for them if that happens. I start with House Speaker John Boehner. Nuff said!

    August 11, 2010 08:26 pm at 8:26 pm |
  5. Tiffany

    Socialism is.Obama s and the democraps political agenda Robert Gibb confirmed this on the show. America wake up Obama is destroying us.

    August 11, 2010 08:31 pm at 8:31 pm |
  6. Mr. Davidson

    Oh ,you mean ,Dopey.

    August 11, 2010 08:44 pm at 8:44 pm |
  7. Micky

    The man is a loose cannon.

    August 11, 2010 08:46 pm at 8:46 pm |
  8. Tom from Ohio

    Nobody wants a centrist president! C'mon, you gotta appeal to those wackos on the extreme left and right.

    August 11, 2010 08:52 pm at 8:52 pm |
  9. AJ

    Gibbs is an arrogant pig, just right for the Obama camp. November is a coming and dems and progressives will be staying at home. What a shame but not unexpected. This administration is like a bunch of children who are so full of themselves and their quest to be "historic." One can only hope that they get kicked in the balls in November.

    August 11, 2010 08:55 pm at 8:55 pm |
  10. Bill

    There surely was one but I certainly don't remember a more sour, overbearing, argumentative White House press secretary than Gibbs. He doesn't help the president with these traits and should be replaced.

    August 11, 2010 09:03 pm at 9:03 pm |
  11. Four and The Door

    some campaign promises have not been kept, including ... a health care overhaul that didn't include a so-called public option.
    They need to find someone who's not afraid of bankrupting the US Treasury to make all of our lives as comfy as possible right now. If the country still has paper and ink left to print money, what are we all suffering for working our lives away? There should be a mandatory 6 months paid vacation for every worker every year. That will really stick it to all those rich people taking advantage of us. Rise up, people! Don't be slaves to da man.

    August 11, 2010 09:03 pm at 9:03 pm |