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David Gregory Responds To “Nonsense,” Regrets Calling McClellan A “Jerk”

gregoryfeb18.jpgIn a blog entry on The Daily Nightly, NBC’s David Gregory admits that he was wrong to lose his temper with Scott McClellan He regrets calling the White House press secretary a jerk “because it’s never appropriate to speak that way and because it created a distraction from the issues at hand.” But he does not apologize “for asking tough questions about this story.” Then he says what a lot of journalists are thinking (and saying privately):

“The debate playing out in the blogosphere, cable airwaves and on talk radio pits the Vice President against an allegedly left-wing, overly cynical, prissy White House press corps in a tizzy because it wasn’t the first to know and angry because it hates the President and Vice President anyway. This is nonsense. If you believe an accidental shooting by Vice President Al Gore would not be met with the same press scrutiny, I think you are not being honest with yourself. Have you Googled transcripts from the Clinton administration at the height of the Lewinsky scandal? The pursuit of information at the White House is often tense. We push hard for it. Maybe you think we pushed too hard in this case. Maybe you think there was no grave harm in waiting to learn the facts of this incident for a few days. I can accept that. The way we do our business is not always pretty and we should be accountable for that. I happen to believe, however, on balance, our dogged pursuit of lots of information, all the time, is a good thing. I view the White House press corps as a proxy for the public. It provides fodder for important debates in this country. But then again, I do have a bias: I’m in the information-gathering business.”

Here’s the full post…

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