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Thursday, February 28, 2013

Woodward Confirms: It was Gene Sperling Who Threatened

Well that didn't take long! This morning the liberal political site Buzzfeed it was Gene Sperling, the director of the White House Economic Council who sent the threatening Email to Wapo reportner Bob Woodward:
Bob Woodward called a senior White House official last week to tell him that in a piece in that weekend’s Washington Post, he was going to question President Barack Obama’s account of how sequestration came about - and got a major-league brushback. The Obama aide “yelled at me for about a half hour,” Woodward told us in an hour-long interview yesterday around the Georgetown dining room table where so many generations of Washington’s powerful have spilled their secrets. Digging into one of his famous folders, Woodward said the tirade was followed by a page-long email from the aide, one of the four or five administration officials most closely involved in the fiscal negotiations with the Hill. “I apologize for raising my voice in our conversation today,” the official typed. “You’re focusing on a few specific trees that give a very wrong impression of the forest. But perhaps we will just not see eye to eye here. … I think you will regret staking out that claim.”
Buzzfeed reported that  source familiar with the exchange "outed" Sperling.
Sperling, a former aide to Clinton Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin who held the same position in Clinton's second term, is a veteran Democratic budget wonk and party insider. Remarked one friend Wednesday, he is "not exactly cut from the classic, no-drama Obama cloth." 
Sperling didn't respond to an email inquiry about the exchange; a White House spokesman declined to comment on the authorship of the email to Woodward.
Man this White House seems to be getting a bit paranoid!

Woodward confirmed the Buzzfeed report to Jonathan Karl of ABC:

Woodward tells me that Sperling’s words – “as a friend, I think you will regret staking out that claim” – was an implied threat because, Woodward says, the White House was not really disputing the facts. 
“It’s just not the way to operate,” Woodward told me, saying Sperling’s implied message was, “You challenge us, you will regret it.” 
Why did he respond to Sperling’s email so politely? He was trying to keep open the lines of communication. 
“They don’t have to talk to anybody,” Woodward said. 
Man the liberal columnists and bloggers are getting even more crazy!

Folks it's time to buy the BIG bag of popcorn because this is going to be interesting and there will be more to Come.
 

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