FEMA's fake news conference in CA
White House spokesperson Dana Perino is chiding senior FEMA officials for staging a phony news conference:
The agency — much maligned for its sluggish response to Hurricane Katrina over two years ago — arranged to have FEMA employees play the part of independent reporters Tuesday and ask questions of Vice Adm. Harvey E. Johnson, the agency's deputy director.
The questions were predictably soft and gratuitous.
"I'm very happy with FEMA's response," Johnson said in reply to one query from an agency employee.
White House press secretary Dana Perino said it was not appropriate that the questions were posed by agency staffers instead of reporters. FEMA was responsible for the "error in judgment," she said, adding that the White House did not know about it beforehand and did not condone it.
"FEMA has issued an apology, saying that they had an error in judgment when they were attempting to get out a lot of information to reporters, who were asking for answers to a variety of questions in regard to the wildfires in California," Perino said. "It's not something I would have condoned. And they — I'm sure — will not do it again."
She said the agency was just trying to provide information to the public, through the press, because there were so many questions. [AP]
USA Today's blog has a good post on the sham Q&A, including a partial transcript of the phony questions.
USA Today's blog has a good post on the sham Q&A, including a partial transcript of the phony questions.As "Jeff Gannon" Guckert of "Talon News" once asked George W. Bush, "How are you going to work with people who seem to have divorced themselves from reality?"