Robert Gibbs unexpectedly criticized his former boss, President Obama, Sunday on MSNBC's "Up With Chris Hayes", according to a Feb. 24 online report on MSNBC.com. Gibbs was the former press secretary to President Obama, recently being hired as a contributor on MSNBC.
The discussion turned to the administration's drone program, and the host, Chris Hayes, played a clip of Gibbs and his successor, Jay Carney, evading questions by reporters about the details. This prompted the surprising remarks about the Obama Administration's transparency regarding the drone program.
Robert Gibbs expressed his opinion that the “denial of the existence of the program when it’s obviously happening undermines people’s confidence overall in the decisions that their government makes.” Most political observers did not see that one coming!
Gibbs discussed the emphasis that was put on the total secrecy of the drone program when he was hired as press secretary. He was told that he was not even to acknowledge that it existed, although he was the official spokesman for the Obama Administration. He used an analogy from the “Wizard of Oz,” likening the situation to him saying:
“Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain.”
In recent days, there has been a tremendous uproar regarding the use of drones to target American citizens abroad. Various entities, government and otherwise, have requested documents that clarify the official use of drones. The subject, along with privacy issues associated with domestic drones, is still quite unexplored.
Regardless, Robert Gibbs thinks that a lack of transparency has made the American people less comfortable with the entire thing.