‘It’s Not About Us’

From today’s briefing:

Q You speak for the President. Your credibility and his credibility is not on criminal trial. But it may very well be on trial with the American public, don’t you agree?

MR. McCLELLAN: No, I’m very confident in the relationship that we have in this room, and the trust that has been established between us. This relationship —

Q See those cameras? It’s not about us. It’s about what the American people —

MR. McCLELLAN: This relationship is built on trust, and you know very well that I have worked hard to earn the trust of the people in this room, and I think I’ve earned it —


Q Scott, let me follow up on what David was asking. You say we know you — and we do — but we can’t vouch for you; that’s not our job. And I wonder, do you really think after —

MR. McCLELLAN: Well, wait a second. Let me just interject there. I think there are many people in this room I see expressing their own commentary on TV all the time — not just reporting. You do a job to report the news, as well, but many people in this room also go on the air and express their views and their commentary. And I’ve worked with many of you for quite some time now.

Q I didn’t follow that. I can’t go on TV and say, “America believes Scott McClellan.” That’s not my role.

MR. McCLELLAN: No, you go on TV, though, and engage in commentary about views and things that are expressed here at the White House.

Q Right. But what I can’t do is carry your water for you. And I wonder —

MR. McCLELLAN: I’m not asking you to.

Q Well, there — yes you are.

Um, yea. “Earned.” That’s one way of looking at it..