Cavuto Strikes Back At Gibbs For His 'Botched White House Presser'

Fox News's Neil Cavuto on Wednesday struck back at Robert Gibbs for his "botched White House presser."

On Tuesday, the White House press secretary took exception with Cavuto inviting former FEMA director Michael Brown on the previous day's "Your World" to offer a conspiracy theory about the Obama administration's response to the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

As NewsBusters reported, Gibbs badly misstated what Brown said during the interview as he chastised Fox's Wendell Goler who had absolutely nothing to do with it.

On Wednesday, Cavuto corrected the press secretary while setting the record straight (video follows with transcript):

NEIL CAVUTO, HOST: You know, I always, always suspected the White House watches this show. Hearing Press Secretary Robert Gibbs yesterday, I can now confirm it.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ROBERT GIBBS, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: Can I say this? Can I -- I watched Fox yesterday.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CAVUTO: You know, actually that was pretty good to hear? Here is what was not. Robert Gibbs jumping all over my colleague Wendell Goler for something former FEMA Director Michael Brown said about the administration's handling of this Gulf oil spill on my show, my program the night before. First, here is what Mr. Gibbs said Mr. Brown said.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GIBBS: Mr. Brown, FEMA Director Brown under Katrina, intimated on Fox -- and it wasn't, editorially say didn't appear to be pushed back on real hard -- that this spill was leaked on purpose in order for us to walk back our environmental and drilling decisions, and that the leak that we did on purpose got out of control and now is too big to contain.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CAVUTO: Not so. But after going back and forth with Wendell, Mr. Gibbs did go back to that line.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GIBBS: Your network put out the former FEMA director to make an accusation that the well had been purposefully set off in order to change an offshore drilling decision.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CAVUTO: Robert, Michael Brown never said that. He never said the administration deliberately set off the leak. Not once. Not ever. He was invited on to compare this administration's, your administration's response to this Gulf disaster to the Bush administration's response to another famous Gulf disaster, Katrina. Here, for the record, is what Mr. Brown did say.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

CAVUTO: Robert Gibbs, the White House press secretary, says the differences are night and day. Where do you see the similarities?

MICHAEL BROWN, FMR. FEMA DIRECTOR: I think, here are the similarities, Neil. First of all, you have a disaster occurs and the Coast Guard shows up immediately. That is their job. In Katrina, FEMA showed up immediately. The president is off in San Diego strumming the guitar. Obama is back east going to the White House correspondents' dinner. You're now nine days into the storm -- into the disaster.

And actually, now, only now, is the president appearing to be engaged. And I think the delay was this: it is pure politics. This president has never supported big oil. He never supported offshore drilling. And now he has an excuse to shut it back down. You have already heard Bill Nelson, senator from Florida, talking about offshore drilling is DOA. They played politics with this crisis and left the Coast Guard out there, by themselves, doing what they're supposed to do.

CAVUTO: So, Michael, you don't take him at face value when he says temporary halt in offshore drill is just that, a temporary halt?

BROWN: No. No. Look, Bill Nelson -- and you know, they don't say these things without it being coordinated. And so now you're looking at this oil slick approaching the Louisiana shore. According to certain NOAA and other places, if the winds are right, it will go up the east coast. This is exactly what they want because now he can pander to the environmentalists and say, I'm going to shut it down because it is too dangerous, while Mexico and China and everybody else drills in the Gulf. We're going to get shut down.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CAVUTO: Now, I'm very sorry for the length of that but I -- I wanted to show the whole thing unedited only to prove this: nowhere in that exchange, nor in the rest of the interview, now available for you all to see in its entirety on FoxNews.com, your world site, as is the entire Gibbs exchanges, did Michael Brown ever say this White House was behind this spill or deliberately started this spill. That would be crazy and laughable.

Here's what is not: dismissing what Mr. Brown did say, about a president who might have botched a lot since that Gulf spill. Just as Mr. Brown argued the last president, his boss, did in the immediate aftermath of that Gulf hurricane.

Mr. Brown says he has become an expert -- an expert on botched responses. So that is why I had him on. Robert Gibbs seems to have done the same for botched White House pressers. That is why I invite him on. So whenever you want, Robert, come on. We'd love to have you.

Indeed. And we'd love to see THAT interview.

Noel Sheppard
Noel Sheppard
Noel Sheppard, Associate Editor of NewsBusters, passed away in March of 2014.