Politics & Policy

Gibbs’ Second Presser

Once again, agonizingly vague and evasive. He stressed that the U.S. has little intention to interfere. 

It is not up to us to determine when the grievances of the Egyptian people have been met by the Egyptian government. We have said all along that there are legitimate concerns and grievances … But we’re not picking between those on the street and those in the government.

When asked whether the U.S. call for an “orderly transition” implied that Mubarak must go, one way or another, Gibbs dodged: 

I’m not going to get into a series of hypotheticals. The Secretary of State said clearly yesterday that there must be an orderly transition.

He also wouldn’t say whether the U.S. would prefer that Mubarak not run for reelection: 

The U.S. does not determine who is on the ballot. The question is whether those elections will be free and fair.

When asked, “What is the government doing to help make it happen [an orderly transition to more open democracy] rather than just calling for it?” Gibbs replied with complete non sequitur: “I’ll let you report on that.”

He also said the state department has not been in contact with ElBaredei over the past week. And finally, speaking of evasiveness, as a reporter asked Gibbs about the threat that the Muslim Brotherhood would gain the most from the uprising, Al Jazeera cut away…

EDIT: I should have noted that Gibbs did say that Mubarak’s recent actions were “not enough,” and he pointed to the protests on the street as proof of that.

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