Reporter's Rant Provokes White House Ire

By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 20, 2009 6:30 PM CST

(Newser) – The White House struck back at a CNBC reporter today for loudly dissing President Obama's housing proposal on the floor of the Chicago Board of Trade, the Wall Street Journal reports. Rick Santelli’s 5-minute tirade, an Internet hit and apparent paean to conservatives, received a cool welcome from Press Secretary Robert Gibbs. "I’d be happy to buy him a cup of coffee—decaf," Gibbs said.

“I would encourage him to read the president’s plan and understand that it will help millions of people,” Gibbs said, adding that it’s “important for people who rant on cable television to be responsible.” Gibbs also invited Santelli to Washington to discuss the matter, a challenge Santelli took up. “I would love to show up,” he said. “I want a dialogue. Enlighten me, enlighten America.”