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Bush seeks grass-roots support on marriage amendment

Editor’s note: Each week, WorldNetDaily White House correspondent Les Kinsolving asks the tough questions almost no one else will ask. And each week, WorldNetDaily brings you the transcripts of those dialogues with the president and his spokesman.

At today’s White House news briefing, WND asked presidential deputy press secretary Trent Duffy about a same-sex marriage amendment and the controversy surrounding press secretary Scott McClellan.

WND: Trent, two questions. It has been more than six months since the election campaign, during which the president said he would push for a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage. Since that time, we have seen little from him on that vital issue. And my question, first question, is it still on his agenda? And if so, what does he plan to do to make it a reality?

DUFFY: It’s absolutely on his agenda. He campaigned very much in favor of a constitutional amendment. As you know, we had a House vote last year – came up a little short. And what the president wants to see is the success of an amendment, so we need to build the kind of grass-roots pressure in favor of succeeding on an amendment so we can get it passed. That’s the best way to succeed, is to build that coalition support.

WND: There have been dozens of syndicated columnists and editorial pages, including today, such as the Wall Street Journal, which have all strongly denounced Newsweek. And the Drudge Report republished several lines of the briefing transcript on Tuesday where certain network people in this room “ripped into Scott on this issue,” as Drudge headlined.

And my question, since MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann wrote about Scott’s alleged letter of resignation, you can assure us that the president regards this as being as asinine and abusive as the network bullying of Scott, can’t you?

DUFFY: Let’s see, if I start on that – (laughter.) I think we’ve been clear about Newsweek making an error, retracting their story, and we –

WND: What about the letter of resignation, this –

DUFFY: Hold on a second, hold on –

WND: – the letter of resignation and the bullying of Scott?

DUFFY: I think we’ve covered Newsweek cover to cover.

WND: No – no comment? You’re not – Scott has not submitted a letter of resignation, has he?

ANOTHER REPORTER: He’s gone. (Laughter.)

DUFFY: Les, we all serve at the – we all serve at the pleasure of the President. Scott has not offered any letter of resignation.

WND: So that is just absolutely rubbish, isn’t it?

DUFFY: Thank you, Les.