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.

Follow the Ticker on Twitter: @PoliticalTicker

"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."

Also see:

Herman Cain endorses Gingrich

Romney picks up Gingrich attacks

Gingrich justifies debate performances

L.L. Bean heiress backs Paul

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

    Just like the Republican party, always making jokes of real people lives.

    January 29, 2012 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  2. Jon

    Mr. Steel is a man thati did not agree with but I respect this guy is the evil spon of Rushbo. When the DixieChicks said they were not proud of President Bush the whole republican party boycotted them . Comparing our President to a person arrested for manslaughter it just shows how mush they hate and how the republican party thinks that because they think he is somehow not one of us they can say or do anything . And if I hear this is the same as how the left treated President Bush it just show again how they lie.

    January 29, 2012 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  3. Bessy

    WOW ! They just get dumber by the day. I can not even imagine using a tragedy like what happened to that ship to try to make political points. Does this idiot think people dying on this cruise ship is funny ? Do you Republicans out there not see what your party had become ? They have no clue and anyone who supports them doesn't have a clue either.

    January 29, 2012 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  4. Steve

    Why is it that the democrats get to decide who is and who isn't being politically correct?

    January 29, 2012 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  5. logicnLA

    If anything, Obama is mre like the first mate left to try and deal with the captain's mess. Like with that ship, his best efforts didn't stop some from dying, but only after Bush and cronies got everything out of the war and Congress they wanted.
    It's easy to blame Obama because 3 years have passed. but it is still more logical to say that Bush had 8 years to make the mess and we all know cleanup from a disaster takes longer than the actual event.

    January 29, 2012 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  6. Louis

    Let's see his great RNC under his leadership has an 11% approval rating, we sure need to listen to anything this guy has to say. Keep staying in your bubble and watch what happens in Nov.

    January 29, 2012 01:25 pm at 1:25 pm |
  7. WhereIsPalin

    Classy individual. However, this comparison might be appropriate. Just rush to conlusions based on assumptions.

    January 29, 2012 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  8. TheTraveler

    Mr. Priebus should look to his own "ship". Support for the GOP, and by association, the RNC, is sinking fast. Support = $$$ in this country and without $$$, the RNC won't be able to hire comedians or buy lap dances in strip joints...

    January 29, 2012 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  9. Stephen in VA

    Good ole' Republicans...still as out of touch as they've ever been. You don't make statements that tick off Independents if you want to win the White House.

    January 29, 2012 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  10. mjw

    That is a very immature and dishonest statement. But what do you expect from someone with a name like "Reince Prebus." Always seems like he has to rinse his prebus....something is not smelling good. Since 2008 they have tried every possible trick in the book to discredit this black president but it does not work and it will not work in this election. God does not like ugly and the Republican/teapartiers are the ugliest I have wintnessed. No wonder their earlier mantra was "I want my country back." Are these the type of leaders Americans need to take our country back to Jim Crow? Isn't that the main reason they are so upset with this president and have congress block him in every way they can.

    January 29, 2012 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  11. Indy

    Having a Reince Priebus is like having a hemmroid and it is best to have them removed. Priebus is the most repulsive person in politics and I am guessing he will be removed from the RNC by the end of this year, and the Captain that abandoned the ship was non other then GW Bush

    January 29, 2012 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  12. sara

    LOL...this idiot doesn't remember Capt. Bush, who saved his fiancial buddies with the TARP bailout after they sanked the ship and he hightailed it back to Texas, while working Americans suffered under the Tanked Economy, 2 Wars and 800,000 jobs per month losses, a busted housing and stock market. Bin Laden still running around threatening this country and he had the nerve to say, "I not thinking about Bin Laden"....his justification of going to war in the first place.
    These people sure think their lack of supporting Education, firing teachers and closing schools are WORKING!!! Lets give them the TEST in November. Obama/Biden 2012!

    January 29, 2012 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  13. MikeH

    What a dip3hite this Priebus is The Republican party tried to push the American economy off a cliff for political gain/to hurt6 Obama, but Obama stopped them. Now, despite everything the Republican party is doing to try to stop it, the economy is rebounding. I have still have a private-sector job because of Obama, my adult daughter still has a private-sector job because of Obama.

    The only jobs the Republicans want to create are Peasant/slave worker, Gestapo police officer, and Concentration Camp guard.

    The Republican party is a malignant cancerous tumor that needs to be excised from the nation.

    January 29, 2012 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  14. jilli

    Priebus: Obama's our Capt. Schettino

    Pathetic, really pathetic. The republican party, the republican congress and it's presidential candidates can only dream of having approval ratings as high as President Obama's.

    January 29, 2012 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  15. Ed Fl

    Their will be THREE[3] embarassed GOP'ers in November, Gingrich ,Romney and the Genius who allowed this to happen . The most person responsible for this disaster will be PREBIUS who is head of the GOP group of nothings. What would you expect from another Wisconsin GOP'er who is out of his league,for this election. Once known as the dairy state could now be referred to as The TURKEY State based on the GOP'ERs in this election cycle.Dumb is as dumb does and the GOP has been great at screwing up this year.

    January 29, 2012 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  16. Darrell

    What a dirtbag.

    January 29, 2012 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  17. Eric

    Because of rhetoric like this...the GOP will always find it difficult to obtain and maintain minorities in its party. To compare the president with a cowardly captain is upright disrespectful.

    Speaking as an independent, why would I support such an organization.

    January 29, 2012 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  18. mjw

    That is a very immature and dishonest statement. But what do you expect from someone with a name like "Reince Prebus." Always seems like something is not smelling good ....rinse prebus. Since 2008 they have tried every possible trick in the book to discredit this president but it does not work and it will not work in this election. God does not like ugly and the Republican/teapartiers are the ugliest I have wintnessed. No wonder their earlier mantra was "I want my country back." Are these the type of leaders America needs? They always use what they know what is wrong with them and use it against the other guy. The ship sunk with Bush and we have been trying to recover. No way can we put thes people back in power. Americans be smart, we have tried this rich guy thing before and it run us in the depression.

    January 29, 2012 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
  19. bob

    I wonder if Gop is "Stupid " enough to think they have a chance in November??? They will lose the Senate and House also! Get prepared for a landslide "VICTORY" for DEMS!!! Obama-Biden 2012!

    January 29, 2012 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  20. A. Wolf

    How ironic for the head of the RNC to use a sinking ship analogy. Also, equating the President with a killer: classy.

    January 29, 2012 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  21. i want a mega rich Mormon who hides money overseas, and a master tax evader as president

    I wouldn't have expected anything Else from the gop. Truly November cannot come fast enough
    Obama 2012.

    January 29, 2012 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  22. BGriff

    That was in poor taste. And every president in the past has campaigned while in office. Just proves the GOP is clueless, and would complain about President Obama no matter what.

    January 29, 2012 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  23. stevetall

    Not surprizing at all that Reince Priebus is just as confused and disfunctional as the party he represents. WHat have you accomplished that's positive lately, Reince? Yep. That's what I thought. Zip.

    January 29, 2012 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  24. w l jones

    How soon people forget it were the president who stayed on his post in 1781 when all others fled when the country were under attack from the worst recession since 1929 look like history repeating itself all over again. Said enough.

    January 29, 2012 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  25. stephanie

    hey dick that italian captain murdered people including two of our own. OMG you people are as worthless and un-American as they come.

    January 29, 2012 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33