December 7, 2009

April Ryan of American Urban Radio Networks Goes Word for Word with Robert Gibbs

"DON'T PLAY WITH ME!" (No, he didn't girl, OH yes he did!)

Contentious exchanges between White House press secretaries and members of the media have been fairly commonplace during the past few presidential administrations.

However, the one that took place between White House press secretary Robert Gibbs and April Ryan of American Urban Radio Networks, in which Gibbs essentially compared Ryan to a petulant child, is among the most heated (and entertaining) in recent memory.

The testy exchange was sparked by Ryan's insistent questioning of White House social secretary Desiree Rogers' role at the recent state dinner, which has been in the headlines because of the fallout from Tareq and Michaele Salahi's "party crashing."

Ryan claimed that there have been whispers around Washington insinuating that Rogers had overstepped the traditional role of her title at the event to become the "belle of the ball," thus "overshadowing the first lady." Frustrated by Ryan's tabloid-y line of questioning, Gibbs instructed her to "calm down" and to take a deep breath," adding "I do this with my son and that's what happens."

As the press corps cringed, murmured and chuckled at Gibbs' chastising, Ryan shot back: "Don't play with me." In the end, Gibbs recommended that they return to more weighty issues, "like 98,000 men and women in Afghanistan." Source: Yahoo! News Blog

On one level this questioning is trivial when considering how important is it if The First Lady was upstaged at the White House state dinner; however in terms of the daily threats the President receives on a daily basis; the fact that uninvited guest can shake hands with the Commander in Chief, then it's very serious.

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