Jeremy Segal of Breitbart News caught up with former White House chief of staff Bill Daley at Chicago’s O’Hare airport this morning and asked him to respond to sensational allegations made by Ed Klein in his #1 bestselling book, The Amateur: Barack Obama in the White House. Klein claims that Daley left the White House because of Valerie Jarrett–a key adviser who followed Barack Obama from Chicago to Washington–and that he opposed Obama’s confrontation with the Catholic Church over contraceptive/abortifacient health insurance mandates.
Segal provided the following transcript of his exchange with Daley (who boarded in first class, naturally) just a few minutes ago:
Breitbart News: Jeremy Segal with Breitbart News. I wanted to ask you two quick questions.
Bill Daley: OK, sure.
Breitbart News: I wanted to know if it dissapointed you that the president took on the Catholic Church?
Daley: Who are you with again?
Breitbart News: Breitbart News.
Bill Daley: Is that a blog or something?
Breitbart News: Yes, and a national news site. You know Andrew Breitbart?
Bill Daley: Oh yeah, isn’t that the guy that died?
What are your feelings about–or were you dissapointed that the president took on the Catholic Church?
Bill Daley: He didn’t take on the church…
Breitbart News: He didn’t?
Bill Daley: No, there are some differences in view on certain issues, but he didn’t take on the church.
Breitbart News: Did you leave the White House because of Valerie Jarrett?
Bill Daley: No.
Breitbart News: Would you care to elaborate on that?
Bill Daley: No, it had nothing to do with Valerie Jarrett.
Here’s what Klein had to say–on Jarrett (p. 128):
…Valerie Jarrett–who was expert at enhancing her power by finding fault with others–pointed a finger of blame at Daley for failing to protect the president from the political fallout [of the debt ceiling debate]. After getting an earful of anti-Daley static [from Jarrett], Obama lost faith in his chief of staff and transferred most of his management responsibilities to Pete Rouse, a longtime aide and political strategist. The hapless Daley was unceremoniously relegated to the sidelines in the West Wing.
And on Daley and the Catholic Church (p. 129):
…Bill Daley and Vice President Biden, both Catholics with intimate ties to the church hierarchy, opposed the mandate, arguing that it breached the separation of church and state and would lose the president Catholic votes.