Valerie Jarrett, a top adviser to President Barack Obama, says she and the rest of the White House remain "very upbeat" despite the series of scandals that have engulfed the Obama administration in recent weeks.
“In any given day, our administration has about 2 million employees, and things happen,” Jarrett tells the Boston Globe. “We put in process procedures to make sure if there has been any wrongdoing, there will be appropriate consequences, and we will move on.”
Jarrett just wants to move on from the scandals. And, she says, the American people want these scandals not to serve as a distraction.
“We have every confidence that people within the White House have behaved appropriately,” Jarrett says. “People all around the country are counting on us not to get distracted or bogged down by this.”
She adds, “I think everybody knows he’s doing his best. ... Our focus is moving the country forward.”
The scandals, the Boston Globe summarizes, are "the singling out of the groups by the IRS, and ... the Department of Justice’s combing through phone records of journalists at the Associated Press." On the IRS scandal, the president of the United States claims to have found out about the targeting of conservatives through press reports--despite the fact that the White House counsel, Kathryn Ruemmler, knew about it for weeks prior.
Jarrett defends Ruemmler's decision to keep the scandal from Obama. “She made it clear that she thought it was important for that process to complete itself before involving the president,” Jarrett tells the Boston Globe. “Now that he is informed, he has already taken action. The head of the IRS has stepped down and a full investigation is underway.”
Jarrett made the comments in an interview just before she Wellesley College’s commencement address on Friday.