July 12, 2005
White House Cannot Confirm Ever Having Met Karl Rove
In a press conference yesterday, White House spokesperson Scott McClellan refused to confirm that the President knew a "Karl Rove" or that he had ever come across anyone by that name.
"I will not comment upon whether the name is even vaguely familiar to me," said McClellan, saying that "the White House has a policy of not giving potentially damaging information to the public at any time."
McClellan received questions from reporters about an incident wherein Mr. Rove -- today the Deputy Chief of Staff at the White House -- compromised the nation's security in order to punish a former ambassador with whom he was displeased. In response, McClellan declined to say whether the President still had confidence in Rove, would not say whether the President had spoken to Rove about the "Plame incident," whether the President knew him, or had heard of him.
Finally, Mr. McClellan denied understanding the words "Karl Rove," merely shaking his head and shrugging his shoulders in a show of incomprehension.
The questioning soon turned to abuse, and reporters hurled threats, insults, and rolled-up newspapers at McClellan until he left the Briefing Room and was replaced by his assistant, Pamela Wiesenstadt.
Ms. Wiesenstatdt refused to confirm or deny the existence of any "Scott McClellan."
Hat tip to Sebestian Meyer of Sebimeyer. Sebimeyer has the entire transcript of yesterday's press gaggle here.
Posted by Tom Burka at 9:45 PM