Press Secretary Dana Perino gave a news briefing to the White House press corps this morning. It was a reminder of how crazed some of the reporters who cover the White House are. Some sample exchanges:
QUESTION: The four thousandth U.S. death in Iraq, does the president regard that as a significant milestone? What does it mean to him?
PERINO: President Bush thinks that every single loss is tragic, from the very first several years ago to the ones that sacrificed yesterday. And he’s extremely proud of the courageous men and women in uniform and all that they’ve done to help protect Iraqis, to protect each other, and to protect this country.
Most of the families of the fallen that he meets with have one request of the president, which is, “Do not let my loved one’s sacrifice be in vain.” And the president assures them that he is
committed to staying and fighting and winning.
QUESTION: Aren’t there also families of the bereaved who ask him to stop the war?
PERINO: There have been. But the vast majority have all asked him not to allow that sacrifice to be in vain. But certainly there are some.
QUESTION: (inaudible) can you say that with certainty?
PERINO: He has said that repeatedly. And that is true for the — I think almost to nearly 1,000 families of the fallen that he’s met with.
QUESTION: Does he take responsibility for a war he started without provocation that led to 4,000 deaths and 30,000 traumatically injured for life?
PERINO: As you know, as he said many times, he was the one responsible for making the decision to go to war. He didn’t make it lightly. And as commander-in-chief, the hardest thing that you do, that he’s done, and that any commander-in-chief before him and those in the future, the hardest thing that they will do is decide to commit our men and women to harm’s way.
QUESTION: Did he foresee this kind of catastrophe?
The questioning continued in the same vein. Another exchange:
QUESTION: Dana, apparently, the New York Fed has just signed off on a deal of quadrupling [sic] the offer that JPMorgan is making for Bear Stearns from $2 to $10 a share. And critics are saying the offer, this higher offer throws cold water on the administration’s
explanation last week that at $2 a share the government was hardly backing a Wall Street bailout while letting American homeowners suffer their own fate.
They say that this new deal, on top of the $29 billion guarantee that taxpayers have already committed to, shows Washington cares more about Wall Street fat cats (inaudible).
PERINO: I think that you should go back to your experts and make sure that they understand what they’re talking about, because this is a deal between Bear Stearns and JPMorgan. The Fed is involved, but this is in regards to the Bear Stearns price that JPMorgan is going to
pay. The taxpayers aren’t bearing any brunt of that price.
And part of the Fed’s commitment to the country and their mission is to make sure that the taxpayers are protected. And that is particularly true in this regard, as well.
QUESTION: Dana, on Iraq, according to the A.P., 97 percent of the American deaths have happened after President Bush declared major combat ended. In retrospect, does he think perhaps he was premature in doing that?
Some of the reporters who cover the White House are such hyper-partisan Democrats that they are more or less crazed by hatred for the President and his administration. It is sobering to realize that these are the people from whom Americans get their “news” on the White House.
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