"I would encourage him to read the president's plan..."
The White House on Friday launched a bullish retaliatory attack on cable television reporter Rick Santelli, saying his "rant" against President Obama's housing foreclosure plan is uninformed and dangerous.
"I'm not entirely sure where Mr. Santelli lives, or in what house he lives," Mr. Gibbs said, repeatedly blasting the reporter by name.
"I would encourage him to read the president's plan and understand that it will help millions of people, many of whom he knows. I would be more than happy to have him come here and read it. I would be more than happy to buy him a cup of coffee decaf."
Helped by prominent coverage from the Drudge Report, Mr. Santelli's strenuous denouncements of the president's housing plan on CNBC have become an Internet sensation. Mr. Santelli called for a "Chicago Tea Party" revolt against Mr. Obama's plans.
"The government is promoting bad behavior," Mr. Santelli said, calling on the administration to hold an Internet referendum to see if Americans really wanted to rescue those with bad mortgages.
It would have been helpful if Gibbs had encouraged Democrat Chuck Schumer, who voted for the bill, to read it.
Here's the rant: