White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs is still facing increasing criticism from liberals even after backtracking comments where he called out "the professional left" for not giving enough credit for what President Obama has accomplished.
Wednesday, Gibbs is scheduled to speak out on-camera for the first time since the comments were published and is likely to get a barrage of questions and clarify his statements made to "The Hill" newspaper.
Gibbs missed Tuesday's briefing, and White House Deputy Press Secretary Bill Burton said Gibbs was suffering a cold and unable to brief. The first question out of the gates Tuesday was on the Gibbs and Burton said, the press secretary was "having one conversation with one reporter" about "frustrations" and "answered honestly. Shouldn't be read more than that."
In the initial interview published Tuesday morning, Gibbs had harsh words for what he called "the professional left"" saying, "They will be satisfied when we have Canadian healthcare and we've eliminated the Pentagon. That's not reality."
Democratic lawmakers, pundits and bloggers immediately weighed in, and Rep. Ellison, D-Minn., even hinted that a resignation may be the fair response.
And of the more provocative lines Gibbs charged, "I hear these people saying he's like George Bush. Those people ought to be drug tested," Gibbs said. "I mean, it's crazy."
This isn't the first time Gibbs found himself in hot water with his party base.The latest in-party scuffle follows a statement in July where Democratic leaders were disappointed that he said on NBC's Meet the Press that he thought his party would likely lose in the mid-term elections. He later backtracked those comments.
Gibbs also walked back from his interview saying he's probably watched too much cable news and that his statements were "inartful" and called for party unity. He also pointed out all the things he thinks the administration has accomplished.
In the initial interview, Gibbs also talked about criticism from Democrats that President Obama had compromised his values on issues like health care and war. "They wouldn't be satisfied if Dennis Kucinich was president," Gibbs said.
The very liberal representative from Ohio spoke to Fox News Radio and said of the comments, "From a political perspective it wasn't very smart." He didn't call for his resignation and didn't seem offended but noted, "It's important for the President's spokesperson to understand that his remarks are taken quite seriously and when he speaks I would hope that he speaks with the purpose of unifying."
On Tuesday night, MSNBC liberal host Keith Olbermann saved his special comment section of the show and took the White House to task for them.Olbermann said the administration should be looking at the "professional right" instead. He said that he wasn't sure if he was part of the "professional left," and he'd rather not be, and it's not a role people seek out, but happens "when others don't do their jobs."
He also charged, that on Tuesday, "The White House has seemed more like the amateur left."
Fox News' Mike Majchrowitz and John Brandt contributed to this report.