JAN 5, 2010
Here’s Robert Gibbs at the daily press briefing discussing his exit.
Provided transcript follows
>> we’re crowded in here.
>> i notice such a thing. many cameras. i see a number of christmas ties as well. fire away.
>> happy new year.
>> can you tell us a bit more — in a bit more detail about what you’re going to be doing there since you’re not going to be lobbying or consulting? how would you define your next job?
>> let me start by saying a few things. it is — and you all know this because you do this as well, and that is it is an honor and a privilege to stand here, to work inside this building, to serve your country, to work for a president that i admire as much as president barack obama. i’ve been a member of his staff for almost seven years, and it’s — again, it’s a remarkable privilege. it is in many ways the opportunity of a lifetime, one that i will be forever thankful and grateful for. what i’m going to do next is step back a little bit, recharge some. we’ve been going at this pace for at least four years. i will have an opportunity. i hope to give some speeches. i will continue to provide advice and counsel to this building and to this president. i look forward to continuing to do that.
>> in terms of advocacy for president are you looking forward to the potential freedom that will come from speaking but not from behind that podium?
>> no, look. you know, i — we — look. we’re in a — we’re in a very different political environment than we’ve been in in a number of years in this country, and i think whoever stands here or whoever goes on television to make the case for this administration should be — to be an advocate for the decisions and the policies that are coming from this building. you certainly have to play that role. i’m not going in order to be freed up to say a series of things that i might not otherwise say. i’ve enjoyed every time i’ve come out here. even on days when miss them every day when you wake up at 4:00 and pick up the paper and groan and have a sense of what the first several questions might be. but i think it’s important for this country and for the administration to come out here and advocate on behalf of and — on behalf of its policies and answer your questions.
>> and you talked about how long you’ve been next to now president obama. can you talk about the impacts that you think your leave willing have in concert with david axelrod and rahm emanuel?
>> i will say this. one of the things you learn very quickly as you walk into this building each day, you are — you’re struck by the sense that — of the history of this place, and you realize that whatever your length of service here, it is temporary in the long and wonderful history of our country. and i think it does an administration good, and i think it will do this administration good to have — to have people like david plouffe and others come into an administration who haven’t been here, who have been able to watch a little bit from the outside. we all admit — you have to admit there’s a bubble in here to some degree. so i think having new voices and having fresh voices, some of those voices that are coming back from having taken a couple of years off are an important part of this process. i think they will serve the president well. even as people like david axelrod and i go outside of the building and have a chance to talk to the president and people here with a slightly different perspective of not driving in here each morning. so it’s — i think it’s unique. i think it’s — but, you know, the truth is you walk around here and you see the history and such. i just reiterate again. you realize that forever how long you’re here, it’s temporary. but what endures is — what endures is our government, what endures is the great experiment of democracy which has proven to be a wonderful thing for the world.