WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY DANA PERINO: I think one of the best pieces of advice I ever gotten was to not take the questions in the briefing rooms personally. It can sometimes feel like they're coming after you or coming after him through you.
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GIBBS: I should be writing this thing down.
TAPPER: We'll get you a transcript.
TAPPER: Is that going to be tough for you? You are known to a degree as a political knife fighter. I think that's what the president-elect was getting at when he compared you to Santino, who was not a good don, by the way. Too emotional.
There were some times during the campaign you probably took things personally a little bit.
GIBBS: I do think the crucible of the campaign, I think, is a little different than I think what governing will be like. I think Dana's right. My guess is if you took every one of them personally, you probably wouldn't make it through a whole month without becoming so enraged that you didn't want to talk to anybody in the press, and I don't think that's probably a very good way of operating.
TAPPER: All right, some more advice.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
FORMER WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY SCOTT MCCLELLAN: You want to be able to vouch for yourself and for the president, but be careful about vouching for others. When you're not there, someone may tell you one thing, but you can't know with absolute certainty.
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TAPPER: Scott McClellan speaking from personal experience. He of course felt very burned by two presidential aides, Karl Rove and Scooter Libby, about their conversations, and his vouching for them from the podium.
There have been times in this campaign and currently where you are asked to vouch for somebody else, what conversations Rahm Emanuel, your -- the incoming chief of staff had with the governor. That's difficult, isn't it, to speak for so many people?
GIBBS: Sure. You have to communicate things that, as Scott said, you may not have been in the room for every one of those decisions or every one of those conversations. I believe that the people that we've assembled, that the president-elect has been able to assemble in a government that will take over on the 20th of January, I think we put together a caliber of people that not only that I trust, but certainly had the trust of the president-elect.
TAPPER: Those are idealistic words. And I don't begrudge you for them, but isn't it inherent...
GIBBS: If I can't be idealistic now, it's never going to happen.
TAPPER: Isn't inherent in having this cabinet full of such strong personalities a risk for you, a risk for you...
GIBBS: I think a far greater risk is to assemble a group of people that whenever the president opens their mouth, they all nod their heads in agreement.
TAPPER: What about people who are trying to protect their reputations before the public of the United States of America? You're going to have Hillary Clinton, your incoming likely secretary of state, is going to have a real power base in Foggy Bottom, at the State Department, and you know, she obviously disagrees with your remaining secretary of defense, Robert Gates, a holdover from the Bush administration. He's going to disagree with Jim Jones, who comes very much out of John McCain's world. How are you going to make sure everybody stays on message, publicly?