White House Press Secretary on Sandra Fluke (2012 March 2)
White House Press Secretary on Sandra Fluke
James "Jay" Carney
The White House
James S. Brady Press Briefing Room
Friday, March 2, 2012
MR. CARNEY: I don't have anything beyond the fact that they're meeting to talk to you about today.
Q President Obama called the Georgetown University law student, Sandra Fluke, within the hour. Why did he call her and what did he tell her?
MR. CARNEY: It was actually more recent than that; it was probably about 20 minutes ago.
Q That's within the hour.
MR. CARNEY: Sorry, you're right, it was within the hour. I just know that that is what I was -- I was in the Oval when he did, and that's one of the things that delayed the briefing.
The President called Georgetown University law student Sandra Fluke -- I think is actually how you pronounce it -- because he wanted to offer his support to her. He wanted to express his disappointment that she has been the subject of inappropriate, personal attacks, and to thank her for exercising her rights as a citizen to speak out on an issue of public policy. And it was a very good conversation.
Q Is that all you can tell us about the conversation?
MR. CARNEY: Well, I mean, I think so. It wasn't -- it was several minutes. They had a very good conversation. I think he, like a lot of people, feels that the kinds of personal attacks that she's -- that have been directed her way are inappropriate. The fact that our political discourse has become debased in many ways is bad enough. It is worse when it's directed at private citizen who was simply expressing her views on a matter of public policy.
Q Is it appropriate for Democratic organizations to try to raise money off of this attack on her?
MR. CARNEY: I think that I'll leave that to whatever organizations might agree with her or sympathize with her. The fact of the matter is the President was expressing his support for her, and his disappointment in the kind of attacks that have been leveled at her to her, and his appreciation for her willingness to stand tall and express her opinion.