Press Secretary Robert Gibbs Suggests President Obama Hasn’t Smoked in Months – Which Has Been Tough During Tax Cut, START Fights

By Jenny Schlesinger

Dec 9, 2010 2:22pm

At today’s White House briefing, White House press secretary Robert Gibbs said he has “not seen or witnessed evidence of the president smoking in nine months.” 

Gibbs had been asked a question about the president’s nicotine needs given the Surgeon General’s recent comments that her boss has been working hard to quit. 

Surgeon General Regina Benjamin today released the surgeon general’s 30th annual report on smoking and health, this one warning that even just one puff on a cigarette could cause physical harm with tobacco smoke poisoning the body immediately. Mere social smoking – or inhaling second-hand smoke- could block arteries and trigger a heart attack, the report warns. 

“It’s not something he’s proud of,” Gibbs said of Mr. Obama’s struggles with the demon weed tobacco. “He knows it’s not good for him. He doesn’t like children to know about it, particularly his own.” 

It’s been difficult for the president, Gibbs suggested, especially during recent political fights over the tax cut compromise and the START nuclear disarmament treaty, “when he might he might have found comfort in” a cigarette, he “pushed it away.” 

-Jake Tapper

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