Priebus: Obama's our Capt. Schettino
January 29th, 2012
12:10 PM ET
10 years ago

Priebus: Obama's our Capt. Schettino

(CNN) – The chairman of the Republican National Committee unveiled his latest attack on President Barack Obama on Sunday, comparing him to the captain of the wrecked Costa Concordia cruise ship.

When asked if the infighting in the GOP presidential primary race would harm the eventual nominee's chances against Obama in November, Reince Priebus said the party would unite by then in an effort to win the White House.

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"In a few months, this is all going to be ancient history and we're going to talk about our own little Captain Schettino, which is President Obama who's abandoning the ship here in the United States and is more interested in campaigning than doing his job as president," Priebus said on CBS' "Face the Nation."

Priebus added the president is "fleeing the American people," just like Schettino allegedly fled his cruise liner.

The ship rolled onto its side in shallow waters off an island on Italy's Tuscan coast on January 13. Seventeen people are confirmed dead and 15 people remain missing while Francesco Schettino is under house arrest and faces possible criminal charges of manslaughter, shipwreck and abandoning ship.

Following the jab, CBS host Bob Schieffer seemed caught off guard by Priebus' comment, asking with a laugh: "What did you just say? What did you call President Obama?"

Priebus was defiant in his response.

"I called him Captain Schettino, you know the captain that fled the ship in Italy," Priebus said. "That's our own president who's fleeing the American people and not doing his job and running around the country and campaigning."

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Filed under: 2012 • President Obama • Reince Priebus
soundoff (813 Responses)
  1. Angela

    No wonder the GOP ship is sinking.

    January 29, 2012 07:44 pm at 7:44 pm |
  2. David

    It is easy to see that the campaign of "do nothing" will continue by the Republicans. I watched the "Civil War by Ken Burns" the other night. Everyone should watch the first episode where the reasons for the war are covered. History does repeat itself...especially from the same "traitorous" States as before.

    January 29, 2012 07:46 pm at 7:46 pm |
  3. alfranken

    I went to Wiki and read about this little punk. This guy is a real nobody. No military experience or even anything that really stands out in his academics - some stupid college in Wisconsin. I would think after his little smart – *ss remark he would know something about seamanship. Probably would drown just playing int he surf.

    January 29, 2012 07:46 pm at 7:46 pm |
  4. clarke

    sir you are are a very disrespectful and classless person. I don't care what party our President is, you just don't do that. The problem with our society today, including the children are adults like yourself. Such a fine example of leadership. NOT

    January 29, 2012 07:47 pm at 7:47 pm |
  5. Frank Cardenas

    Do you think may Priebus was born stupid?

    January 29, 2012 07:47 pm at 7:47 pm |
  6. Charlie from the North

    More like the House GOP/ tea pardiots are that rock the ship hit. How dare you? Your party drove us into a ditch and you are standing in the way of the tow truck operator complaining that he's not going fast enough.

    January 29, 2012 07:47 pm at 7:47 pm |
  7. garc

    Is it possible the GOP could be a) More out of touch and b) More disrespectful? Crikey.

    January 29, 2012 07:48 pm at 7:48 pm |
  8. Progressive from Georgia

    Words are cheap. Priebus is a mouthpiece for the Republican Party and will say anything to
    disparage President Obama. There are no longer any lines or boundaries of decency
    and civility in political discourse. Mr. Priebus has stepped over the line. The next thing he may
    say is compare President Obama to Hitler. But a few Republicans have already beaten Priebus to the punch
    with this analogy.

    January 29, 2012 07:50 pm at 7:50 pm |
  9. Heath

    If I remember currently, Democrats blamed the shooting of Gabby Giffords and subsequent death of several people SPECIFICALLY on Sarah Palin and "right wing hate speech" against ALL evidence that the guy was an insane anarchist without political affiliation, but all of a sudden a METAPHOR for Schettino is crossing the line? Yeah, I think conservatives ought to be concerned about metaphors when liberals stop blaming innocent people for murder.

    January 29, 2012 07:52 pm at 7:52 pm |
  10. pjevans3

    Another offensive comment by the head of the RNC. Since when did bashing the President of the United States become a way for getting your party elected? These guys have been a bunch of sore losers and would rather see the President and this country fail so they could say "I told you so." I refuse to tolerate the outright lies and disrespect the GOP now represents. OBAMA 2012!!

    January 29, 2012 07:53 pm at 7:53 pm |
  11. Birdwatcher1

    Filthy, disgusting words. The republicans should be horribly, horribly ashamed of themselves.

    January 29, 2012 07:57 pm at 7:57 pm |
  12. bear

    Just proves you can't "you can't teach ignorance.

    January 29, 2012 07:58 pm at 7:58 pm |
  13. Larry L

    @DC Observer

    "Not a shocking comparison but rather a shocking similarity between two heads of ship who abandoned their commands – one casued losss of life on the high sees; the other caused loss of hope, lose of faith, loss of jobs, loss o fhomes. loss of savings, and in some cases – loss of lives."
    -----------------------------------------------------------–If you are refering to George W. Bush you are correct. He crashed the economy, he started wars with no plan, he issued the first bailout to the banking industry and he's been hiding at his ranch ever since. President Obama has been working to pull us out of the mess left behind – with the Republicans obstruction all progress. Republicans filibustered 95 times to block debate and votes. They even filibustered their own initivatives! Don' be delusional – step away from Fox News and think!

    January 29, 2012 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
  14. A Texan

    Never have I ever seen the rift in any party as wide as the Repubs . It`s a war between the old GOP and the new radical extreme right wing Tea Partiers whose only REAL goal is to keep or reduce the Bush tax cuts even farther for the super rich that have done so well in the last two decades.......... Nuf said........

    January 29, 2012 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
  15. Pat in IL

    What a jerk. First, to stoop to that kind of language should be beneath a person in his position. Second, he is picking a very lame battle. Obama inherited a huge mess and has already made great progress toward fixing some of it. .

    January 29, 2012 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
  16. Texas Annie

    Reince Priebus strikes me as a little prissy faced know it all who thinks he's better than everybody else. And isn't is painfully obvious just how racist he & his party really are.

    January 29, 2012 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
  17. edmundburkeson

    I would add first mate Pelosi & Reid to the analogy/

    January 29, 2012 08:02 pm at 8:02 pm |
  18. GhostRider

    Priebus added the president is "fleeing the American people," just like Schettino allegedly fled his cruise liner. Now Let's rephrase that: "fleeing the Rich and Wealthy American People"...Now it make sense....

    January 29, 2012 08:04 pm at 8:04 pm |
  19. ab

    The GOP would be soooo laughable if this weren't such a serious situation.

    My gosh, LOOK at the 'candidates' these folks are considering to lead our country!
    If this is the best they can do, OF COURSE they're spending all their energy making ignorant (not to mention insensitive) comments comparing President Obama to the captain who abandoned his ship.

    When one has nothing substantive to say or anything of value to offer, one throws mud.....AND does a lot of wishful thinking.

    They'd LOVE it if President Obama 'abandoned ship'! They know that's the ONLY way a Republican is going to be sitting in the White House come 2013!

    OBAMA 2012!!!!!

    January 29, 2012 08:05 pm at 8:05 pm |
  20. Monique

    There is something wrong with the Republican mentality... are they all stupid or mentally sick, or what???

    January 29, 2012 08:06 pm at 8:06 pm |
  21. grahhollow

    This has to be one of the dumbest things I've heard someone say.

    January 29, 2012 08:06 pm at 8:06 pm |
  22. scottf

    The Republicans all suffer from the same disease. They lie, cheat, bully,make up facts, and give new meaning to hypocrisy.
    Put another way no one can trust anything they say.

    January 29, 2012 08:06 pm at 8:06 pm |
  23. that's pathetic

    Not one of these fools has an ounce of class.

    January 29, 2012 08:07 pm at 8:07 pm |
  24. candy

    Does this clown even understand what "fleeing the ship", "left the ship" mean? As far as I know, Obama hasn't left the WH and the WH is in the helm of the ship, right? In fact, he's trying to remain in the helm for a few more years to come. This right after that Arizona governor's figuring at Obama; is there any more GOP who has the decency to show respect to the US Presidency anymore?

    January 29, 2012 08:08 pm at 8:08 pm |
  25. Sam J

    The only thing shocking is that the G-NO-P wants to go back to the same policies that wreaked havoc on the American Economy. It's funny that they talk about how taxing the job creators would kill jobs. My question is after 10 years of tax cuts for these "job creators", WHERE THE %^&% are the jobs? The G-NO-P is good at one thing though - saying NO!!! Now the American people need to say NO to the G-NO-P!

    January 29, 2012 08:09 pm at 8:09 pm |
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