I have known Gene Sperling for more than a decade, and interacted with him often. During 99 percent of our policy discussions, we have had opposing views, and I can remember him making the case to me that “Kevin, you are wrong, and when you find out you are wrong, you are going to regret saying that.” It is his style of argument. As far as I can recall, I have never felt such regret, but I can say that Gene is an old-fashioned honorable and generous man who speaks directly and truthfully. There are plenty of thugs in this town, but he is not one.
The fact is, the media is for the most part wildly biased in favor of this White House, but that is likely because many reporters covering the White House share the White House’s views, not because of scare tactics. The story that there is blatant intimidation going on will likely be fed by this exchange, but it should not be.