(October 8, 2003) -- President George W. Bush has congratulated Governor-elect Arnold Schwarzenegger in a telephone call from the White House.
We post below excerpts of an excerpt of today's White House media briefing, incluidng follow-up Q & A with the White House press corps:
[begin White House transcript, with spokesman's opening statement]
MR. McCLELLAN: Good afternoon. At approximately noon today, just a short time ago, the President called Governor-elect Schwarzenegger to congratulate him on his victory. The President said to the Governor-elect that he was proud of the race he ran and that he looked forward to working with him.
And with that, I will go right into questions
Q Will the President see the Governor-elect next week in California?
MR. McCLELLAN: Didn't we ask that earlier? (Laughter.)
Q I think I might have.
MR. McCLELLAN: We'll keep you posted on the schedule, if there are any updates to the schedule. The President looks forward to seeing him at some point in the future.
Q A question: How late did the President stay up last night? Was he watching the California results? And who told him --
Q Or the Cubs?
Q Or at baseball game?
MR. McCLELLAN: No, I did not -- no, I don't believe he made it through either of them. (Laughter.)
Q Okay, let me ask you a second question. California does have the largest block of electoral votes in the country, and they've been voting for the Democrats in quite a few presidential elections, I am sure, though, the President doesn't want get involved in that, right, he does consider California a victory for a Republican to be --
MR. McCLELLAN: There will be plenty of time to talk about the campaign. Obviously, the President will be reaching out to people all across the United States. But there will be plenty of time to talk about that when the time comes.
Q But it doesn't hurt him at all to have a Republican governor --
MR. McCLELLAN: This election just happened in California, and the President congratulated the Governor-elect. There will be plenty of time to talk about '04 later. But right now we'll stay focused on the issues at hand.