- The Washington Times - Tuesday, January 28, 2014

President Obama ran in 2008 on a platform of pledging to change the culture in Washington — an effort that his former spokesman says the White House has now acknowledged is essentially fruitless.

“I think the ability to change Washington is something that long ago the White House sort of stopped trying to do,” former White House press secretary Robert Gibbs said Tuesday on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.” “Whether or not that’s a good thing, we’ll look back on history.”

“I do think that this is a story of Washington dysfunction,” Mr. Gibbs continued, speaking about Mr. Obama’s State of the Union address Tuesday evening. “Everything in this speech is what the public wants to hear. The public just doesn’t simply think that this group of people assembled in this room is remotely capable of solving those problems.”

Mr. Gibbs went on to say that 2013 was a “lost year” for the president, who he said was buffeted by “crisis after crisis.”

“I think the test of this speech will be: Do the American people that do watch, do they feel like this president has a plan to get some of those things done, or is this just another speech out of Washington?” he said.