Beating Scotty like a rented mule

Helen Thomas is the greatest:

MR. McCLELLAN: I’ll come to you in a minute.

Go ahead, Helen.

Q I want to revisit a question I asked you last week and you didn’t have the answer — you may have it now. Did the President ever do community service while he was in the National Guard?

MR. McCLELLAN: Helen, you had said that this was relating to a rumor that you heard, and I think there’s a difference between rumor-mongering and journalism. And so I’m just not going to dignify those kind of rumors from this podium. I think the records have been released and you have — all the information is available to you publicly.

Q So you don’t really know?

MR. McCLELLAN: No, I said this was relating to some trashy rumors that are circulating out there, and I’m just not going to dignify them from this podium.

Q It’s a very simple question.

MR. McCLELLAN: Go ahead, John.

Apparently there is no simple answer. All Scott has to do is say, “No. The President did not do any community service while he was serving his country in the Texas Air National Guard. He was focused on keeping America safe and fulfilling his obligation.”

See? And he even gets to say “focused” again which gets him a kibble when he goes off stage.

Meanwhile, the press smells a new kind of blood:

Q But it would appear, though, that people very high up in this administration didn’t have a whole lot of faith in the forecast of the report that went up to Congress just a week ago in terms of the job creation numbers.

MR. McCLELLAN: Again, it’s an annual economic report that is put out by the administration based on the economic modeling and the data that’s available at that point in time.

Q Can you answer the specific question, though? Was this report — was the prediction of this many jobs, 2.6 million jobs, vetted prior to publication by the entire economic team?

MR. McCLELLAN: It’s an annual report, David. It goes through the usual — it goes through the usual —

Q That’s not the question. Was it or was it not vetted by the entire economic team?

MR. McCLELLAN: It’s an annual report. It goes through the usual —

Q So you don’t know, or it was, or it wasn’t?

MR. McCLELLAN: Can I get — can I finish that sentence?

Q When you answer the question. Let’s hear it. What’s the answer?

MR. McCLELLAN: The answer was, it is an annual economic report and it goes through the normal vetting process. And if you would let me get to that, I would answer your question.

Q — the full economic team vetted the prediction —

MR. McCLELLAN: It’s an annual economic report. It’s the President’s Economic Report. But again, the President —

Q Just say yes or no —

MR. McCLELLAN: — it goes through the normal — it goes through the normal vetting process.

Q So the answer is, yes. I’m not done yet, I’ve got another one.


Q Why — if you’re suggesting that people will debate the numbers, that’s kind of a backhanded way to say, oh, who cares about the numbers. Well, apparently, the President’s top economic advisors do, because that’s why they wrote a very large report and sent it to Congress. So why was the prediction made in the first place, if the President and you and his Treasury Secretary were going to just back away from it?

MR. McCLELLAN: Well, one, I disagree with the premise of the way you stated that. This is the annual Economic Report of the President and the economic modeling is done this way every year. It’s been done this way for 20-some years.

Q So why not — why aren’t you standing behind it?

MR. McCLELLAN: I think what the President stands behind is the policies that he is implementing, the policies that he is advocating. That’s what’s important.

Q That’s not in dispute. The number is the question.

MR. McCLELLAN: I know, but the President’s concern is on the number of jobs being created —

Q My question is, why was the prediction made —

MR. McCLELLAN: — and the President’s focus is on making sure that people who are hurting because they cannot find work have a job. That’s where the President’s focus is.

Q Then why predict a number? Why was the number predicted? Why was the number predicted? You can’t get away with not — just answer the question. Why was that number predicted?

MR. McCLELLAN: I’ve been asked this, and I’ve asked — I’ve been asked, and I’ve answered.

Q No, you have not answered. And everybody watching knows you haven’t answered.

MR. McCLELLAN: I disagree.

Go ahead.

The beating never really stops turning this into 32 Minutes of Scotty Smackdown which is a mere thirteen minutes short of the Jesus Line.

This guy should be getting A-Rod money….

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Yeah. Like I would tell you....