White House Fires Back At RNC Chair Over ‘Captain Schettino’ Comment

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Republican National Committee chairman Reince Priebus speaks during the 2011 Republican Leadership Conference on June 18, 2011 in New Orleans, La. (credit: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

Republican National Committee chairman Reince Priebus speaks during the 2011 Republican Leadership Conference on June 18, 2011 in New Orleans, La. (credit: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

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WASHINGTON (AP) — The White House is criticizing comments by the Republican National Committee chairman comparing President Barack Obama to the Italian cruise ship captain who allegedly abandoned his sinking ship.

RNC Chairman Reince Priebus said Sunday on CBS’s “Face the Nation” that Obama was “our own little Captain Schettino.” Priebus accused Obama of abandoning ship in the U.S. and spending more time on his re-election campaign.

Former RNC Chairman Michael Steele told MSNBC the analogy was “unfortunate.”

In response, White House press secretary Jay Carney said: “If you are so desperate for attention that you make an analogy that Michael Steele deems inappropriate, you know you’ve probably gone too far.”

Sixteen people remain unaccounted for and are presumed dead in the shipwreck of the Costa Concordia.

(© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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