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White House apologizes to Shirley Sherrod
Interestingly, though, he sidestepped a question about whether fear of the conservative media drove the decision to fire Sherrod before the facts were all in.
Here's what Gibbs said, referring to Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack:
The secretary is trying to reach her. I hope the secretary reaches her soon, and they have an opportunity to talk. The Secretary will apologize for the actions that have taken place over the past 24 to 36 hours. And on behalf of the administration, I offer our apologies.
Gibbs also seemed to promise some kind of reckoning as to how the White House botched this mess, though he stopped short of promising anything official:
I think everybody has to go back and look at what has happened over the past 24 to 36 hours, and ask ourselves how we got into this. How did we not ask the right questions? How did you all not ask the right questions? How did other people not ask the right questions?
When asked directly by a reporter whether the administration had "overreacted" because the White House is "afraid" of the conservative media, Gibbs brushed off the question.
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