Gowdy: Issa would take back ‘paid liar’ comment

If he could do it over again, House Oversight Committee Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) would not call White House spokesman Jay Carney a "paid liar," Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.) said Thursday.

Asked if the "paid liar" comment went too far, Gowdy told CSPAN's Washington Journal, “I think Chairman Issa would tell you it was."

Lawmakers don't get any training on handling television interviews, he noted. "Almost every day I say the wrong thing or I phrase it incorrectly," he said.

"I think if Chairman Issa had to have it back, he would say that Jay Carney has reiterated things that were demonstrably false, that he has taken liberties with the truth, but I think he would phrase it differently," Gowdy said. "And frankly, to his credit, if Chairman Issa was sitting here, I think he would tell you that."

Republican Sens. John McCain (R-Ariz.) and Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) both distanced themselves from Issa's comments last week. House Republican leaders have also warned Issa to tone down his rhetoric, according to Politico.

Rachel Weiner covers local politics for The Washington Post.
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Rachel Weiner · June 6, 2013