TAPPER: Dana Perino, talking about defending the press to the president, while she's standing there sporting a black eye from when a member of the Iraqi press threw his shoes at the president. Not always easy to defend the press, I would imagine.
GIBBS: I certainly know that President-elect Obama believes that and understands that role.
TAPPER: But he thinks that we, the media, spend too much time on silly things.
GIBBS: I wouldn't disagree that there were times in the campaign that that was -- look, there were, you know, we were watching hundreds of thousands of people lose their jobs, and we were debating the meaning of the phrase "lipstick on a pig."
In large ways, the public gets their information through a working press. It's up to the press secretary to advocate for the type of access and for the type of knowledge that they need, to do their job in order to be able to communicate the president's message. My guess is, if you can talk to the current administration, particularly as it relates to the economic recovery or the money that's been used to help, you know, banks and to relieve the stresses on our financial system, is -- if they could do it all over again, I bet one of the things that they might tell you is, they need -- probably needed a stronger communications strategy for letting people know and understand how this was going to work and what this money was going to be used for.
TAPPER: Last bit of advice.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOE LOCKHART, FORMER CLINTON PRESS SECRETARY: In a little tiny hidden office in the White House press secretary's office, there is a literal flak jacket, a kevlar flak jacket, and tradition has been passed on from press secretary to press secretary to write a note to the next person who is going to take the job. It provides the best advice you can ever get. Some of it's very funny. Some of it's very poignant, but most importantly it's secret. But I would advise Mr. Gibbs to read them carefully.
PERINO: It's a great tradition, and I look forward to passing it on to you, Robert.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
TAPPER: Who is the press secretary whose advice you want to read the most? Who is the one who you hope to be most like?
GIBBS: Well, I think each of them has brought many strengths to the job.
TAPPER: Don't give me that. Who do you -- who...
GIBBS: See, I'm already -- I'm practicing for my next job. Right?
TAPPER: Very diplomatic. All right. We'll leave it there. Robert Gibbs, incoming White House press secretary, thanks for joining us.
GIBBS: Thanks for having me again.