Gibbs Laments Images, Statements From Tea Party Crowd As ‘Stunning’

November 6, 2009 10:09 a.m.

David Corn from Mother Jones read an incendiary quote from yesterday’s Capitol Hill Tea Party to White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs this afternoon during the press briefing.

Gibbs used the question as an opportunity to lament the state of discourse in the U.S.

Here’s the Gibbs exchange:Corn: “Yesterday at the rally on Capitol Hill, Congressman Boehner said that he considers the health care bill to be, quote, ‘the greatest threat to freedom he has ever seen.’ I just was wondering what your response is to that.

Gibbs: “I think we can take up the better part of our afternoons and probably significantly into the weekend thinking of other conflicts that we’ve seen or read about throughout the history of the world that might be a greater threat to freedom than what Congressman Boehner was discussing.”

“I will continue to say what I’ve said before. You hear in this debate, you hear analogies, you hear references to, you see pictures about and depictions of individuals that are truly stunning, and you hear it all the time. People — imagine five years ago somebody comparing health care reform to 9/11. Imagine just a few years ago had somebody walked around with images of Hitler. Hopefully we can get back to a discussion about the issues that are important in this country that we can do so without being personally disagreeable and set up comparisons to things that were so insidious in our history that anybody in any profession or walk of life would be well advised to compare nothing to those atrocities.”

If you haven’t seen the remark, from Minority Leader John Boehner (R-OH), watch TPMDC’s highlight reel from the event. Corn had the remark a bit wrong – Boehner said it was “greatest threat” to freedom he’d seen in his 19 years in Congress.

Intern superstar Andrew Hymas (whose last day is today!) clipped the video:

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