White House spokesman Robert Gibbs to quitBy DPA, IANS
Wednesday, January 5, 2011
WASHINGTON - Robert Gibbs, the White House spokesman and a long-time confidant of President Barack Obama, announced Wednesday that he will be leaving his post.
Gibbs’ departure comes as Obama plans a wider shake-up of his White House staff as he enters the second half of his first term in office. There is speculation that he could soon name a new chief of staff and chief economic advisor.
Obama in a telephone interview with the New York Times said Gibbs had been “extraordinary” on the press podium and would “continue to shape the dialogue politically for many years to come”.
Gibbs has been part of Obama’s inner circle since the president first ran for an open Senate seat in Illinois in 2004, and has handled the daily briefings and reporters’ inquiries since Obama took office in January 2009.
Gibbs in some select interviews with US media outlets said he planned to leave shortly after Obama gives his annual State of the Union speech later this month. He would continue to advocate for the administration’s policies on television programmes and in speeches.