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White House Has No Answer So Far On Sestak Bribe Claim

One week after the President’s top spokesman was questioned about Rep. Joseph Sestak’s (D-Pa) claim that he was offered a high-ranking Administration position if he abandoned his primary challenge to Sen. Arlen Specter (D.-Pa.), the White House still has no answer yet on this very serious charge of a political bribe.

If Sestak’s claim is true, one or more Obama administration officials could be guilty of a federal felony.

At the regular briefing for reporters at the White House yesterday, I reminded Press Secretary Robert Gibbs of the two questions he had received last Monday (February 22nd) about Sestak’s “yes” reply to a television interviewer who asked whether he was offered a high-ranking position to get out of the primary against Republican-turned-Democrat Specter.

“I have not made any progress on that,” Gibbs told me.

I then reminded Gibbs that I had been in touch with Pentagon spokesman Goeff Morrell who said no one in the office of the secretary of defense knew anything about a discussion with retired Navy Vice Admiral Sestak and that the Keystone State congressman’s spokesman had told me the congressman stood by his story. 

“Can you check if the White House made any offer?,” I asked Gibbs.

“Yes,” he replied, “I was remiss on this and I apologize.”

Later, my colleague Fred Lucas of CNS again raised the Sestak controversy and told Gibbs that the Philadelphia Inquirer had reported that an unknown White House spokesman did deny what Sestak had said three times now .

“I said I would check on this,” Gibbs told Lucas, “It’s hard for me to do follow-ups on something I can’t work through.”

“So at this point the White House is not ready to deny what Sestak said?” Lucas pressed. 

“No,” said Gibbs, and then pointing to me repeated that “I think I said I would check on the situation.”

From Sestak’s insistence on what he was offered and Gibbs’ incomplete answers, the question of whether the White House attempted to bribe Sestak is still open.

Written By

John Gizzi has come to be known as â??the man who knows everyone in Washingtonâ?ť and, indeed, many of those who hold elected positions and in party leadership roles throughout the United States. With his daily access to the White House as a correspondent, Mr. Gizzi offers readers the inside scoop on whatâ??s going on in the nationâ??s capital. He is the author of a number of popular Human Events features, such as â??Gizzi on Politicsâ?ť and spotlights of key political races around the country. Gizzi also is the host of â??Gizziâ??s America,â?ť video interviews that appear on Gizzi got his start at Human Events in 1979 after graduating from Fairfield University in Connecticut and then working for the Travis County (Tex.) Tax Assessor. He has appeared on hundreds of radio and TV shows, including Fox News Channel, C-SPAN, America's Voice,The Jim Bohannon Show, Fox 5, WUSA 9, America's Radio News Network and is also a frequent contributor to the BBC -- and has appeared on France24 TV and German Radio. He is a past president of the Georgetown Kiwanis Club, past member of the St. Matthew's Cathedral's Parish Council, and secretary of the West End Friends of the Library. He is a recipient of the William A. Rusher Award for Journalistic Excellence and was named Journalist of the Year by the Conservative Political Action Conference in 2002. John Gizzi is also a credentialed correspondent at the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund. He has questioned two IMF managing directors, Dominique Strauss-Kahn and Christine LaGarde, and has become friends with international correspondents worldwide. Johnâ??s email is JGizzi@EaglePub.Com

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