Gibbs: 'Inexplicable' If Someone Involved in Creation of Obamacare Website Isn't Fired

December 2, 2013

Former White House press secretary Robert Gibbs said Monday on Now With Alex Wagner it would be "inexplicable" if somebody or a whole team of people were not fired for their role in the disastrous rollout of the Obamacare website.

Now an MSNBC contributor, Gibbs said if such action wasn't taken by the spring, he would be surprised:

ALEX WAGNER: Robert, I think the big picture question here is does the White House learn anything or do anything tangible in response? Ron Fournier calling in his own way -- the sensational title of his piece is, 'Fire your team, Mr. President.' Or I think it was, 'President Obama needs to fires himself.' Not literally, of course, but practically he needs to shake up his team. You have said that you think once these problems have been fixed that there will be some staffing changes. Do you still think that's true and do you think it needs to be as dramatic as what Ron Fournier suggests?

ROBERT GIBBS: I don't think it should be as dramatic as the president firing himself.

WAGNER: Yes, nor do I think that's constitutionally possible.

GIBBS: I think I can come out against that. But I do think it will be inexplicable if somebody involved in the creation of the website doesn't get fired or a group of people don't get fired. Again, if you look at that New York Times story from this weekend, when folks at HHS are looking at the White House and Denis McDonough's countdown calendar to the beginning of implementation and are looking at that derisively or laughing or thinking it's micromanaging; I mean let's be clear, if there's one thing that the White House didn't do on this, they didn't micromanage the bureaucracy enough. Right? I think if we get through the end of the enrollment period -- I said this first on your show, Alex. We should get through the fixing of this before we clean house, but I think it will be inexplicable if we get sometime in the spring and somebody at HHS or CMS or both haven't been fired. There aren't really any good excuses for not firing people. The private sector velocity should also include the velocity of moving somebody's framed pictures out of their office and into a new job.

WAGNER: That my friend is going to get picked up on the Internet.