RUSH: Moments ago, I described to you, watching just as you would watch television, there are many things that you and I do that we do the same way. Although many of you doubt that, it’s true. I watch TV the way everybody else does, and Obama was having a town hall meeting in Annandale, just outside Washington, right? He finally took, what, a G5 to fly there. At any rate, normally at these things, at these Obama town meetings, you’ve got these young, vivacious, excited, young cultists. They’re out there and they’re all jazzed, and they’re all excited; why, he has arrived. This crowd looked dead. They looked like this was the last place they wanted to be. They did not look excited. They had long faces. They were frowning. And then I was told that there was sort of a dustup at the Robert Gibbs briefing at the White House. And it was. We have two sound bites, press secretary Robert Gibbs did the daily press briefing and during the Q&A Chip Reid of CBS said, ‘This town hall meeting that the president’s doing later this afternoon, this is very tightly controlled. I mean the concept of a town hall is to have an open public forum and this sounds like a very tightly controlled audience and list of questions. Why do it that way?’
GIBBS: How about we do this? How about you can ask me that question tomorrow based on what questions were asked rather than preselecting your question based on something that may or may not come through.
REID: Why preselect? Why not just open it up to people and allow any question to come in?
GIBBS: Well, Chip, I think if you get on your computer from your e-mail address —
REID: I have, I have.
GIBBS: Have you sent in your question?
REID: I think that would it be inappropriate. This was for the public.
GIBBS: Well, I’m sorry. I’m confused. Are you not a member of the public?
RUSH: Ooh, ice, ice is forming in the Gibbs White House briefing room. This was a tightly controlled — I wish I could give you the names here. Well, let me get to the second sound bite. I don’t want to lose the context here. Next up Helen Thomas, and she’s not digging any of this, either.
THOMAS: I’m amazed at you people who call for openness and transparency and–
GIBBS: You haven’t even heard the questions!
REID: It doesn’t matter. It’s the process.
THOMAS: You have left–
REID: Even if there’s a tough question, it’s a question coming from somebody who was invited or who was screened or the question was screened.
GIBBS: Chip, let’s have this discussion at the conclusion of the town hall meeting. How about that?
THOMAS: It’s a pattern of controlling the press.
GIBBS: How so? Is there any evidence currently going on that I’m controlling the press? Poorly, I might add. (laughter)
THOMAS: Your formal engagements are prepackaged.
GIBBS: How so?
REID: Well, in controlling the public–
THOMAS: By calling reporters the night before and telling them they’re going to be called on. That is shocking.
GIBBS: I — we’ve had this discussion ad nauseam.
THOMAS: Of course you would, because you don’t have any answers.
RUSH: Whoa, Helen and Chip Reid having a cow at the Robert Gibbs press briefing. Now, what they’re talking about, what’s obviously outraged them here is the HuffPo guy got into the last formal press conference with a staged question, he was told the night before you gonna get in there on a temporary pass, a visitor pass and here’s the question that we want you to ask and the guy was more than happy to do it. The question he asked was, ‘Mr. President, we’re in contact with people inside Iran, Iranian citizens, and they are saying X, X, X.’ The whole thing was staged, and the press, see, they’re outraged here that Gibbs would stage this. So what this means is, they know everything else has been staged. How did they know this town meeting was staged? They only know it because everything is. Folks, that ABC thing, that infomercial was staged. It was a filibuster. He got 60% of the time. And the questions were largely known. ABC didn’t want anybody in there who didn’t agree with the whole premise of socialized medicine, nationalized health care. So they know. They know.
The reason they’re really mad is not the stuff is staged or they’d have blown up about it long before this, they’re mad that an interloper got in amongst them at a serious press conference, the HuffPo. It’s nothing more than an in-debt blog. It’s nothing more than an in-debt blog, and these people, they are serious practitioners of the art of journalism, and to have an interloper thrown in there, they’re as mad as when Al Sharpton discovered that a Jewish guy opened a clothing store in Harlem. Had to get that interloper out. Same thing here. But, regardless, it’s fun to listen to them. And Gibbs didn’t know what to do; he didn’t know what to say. And when you watch this, if you do see any tape of this, you just take a look at the crowd, there was nothing they could do to hide the fact that this crowd was dead. It looked like, in fact, this crowd had been rounded up, that they were going to be doing something else like going to a movie or maybe half of them were going to the welfare office to get the check and they’d been interrupted, said, ‘Before you go get the check you’re going in here to go listen to the president.’ Sat there, the sullen looks on their faces. It was amazing to see.
Now, here’s the story. I can’t mention any names, but, as you know, President Obama has many roundtables made up of private American citizens from various industries. He’s got an economic roundtable; he has a banking roundtable, and all these other things. And at one of these meetings — I’m not going to tell you which roundtable it was, but don’t doubt me on this — at one of these meetings they were all given questions to ask, televised around noon right when this program starts, this is back in the days when they had the work groups and the study groups, dispatch them out there to solve the problem in an afternoon. And they gave the participants in this particular roundtable the questions to ask. And so this guy in the roundtable asked the question that he was given, and President Obama botched it to smithereens. After the meeting, a key White House official approached this man and said, ‘How dare you embarrass the president this way.’ And this guy, ‘Okay, I see what’s going on here.’ So he apologized, ‘I’m sorry, I’m sorry, I you know, you’re right.’ They’re scared to death of these people.
The guy gets back to where he lives and gets a call from a White House official, ‘This isn’t over. I’m coming out and we’re going to have lunch. You don’t embarrass the president this way.’ I mean this is the Mayor Daley way, this is the Chicago thug way, and these people in the press know that all this stuff is staged. I mean how do they know today’s was staged? Give me a wild guess? How did they know today’s was staged? Did somebody leak it? It is my contention that all of them are staged, all these things are staged and they have been through the campaign. Somebody as preprogrammed as Obama is not going to — the only time he takes a flier is with a press conference and that’s when he gives people the evil eye. You know, the Hawaii stink eye, it’s when he gives the stink eye. So there you have it. I was told it was good, and it turned out to be.