WH deputy not-so-subtly reminds Bill Hemmer how to pronounce ‘Beto’s’ real name: ‘It’s Robert Francis’

(File Photo: screenshot)

Beto O’Rourke may be joining an already crowded pool of 2020 Democratic presidential contenders but voters may have to get used to calling him by his given name.

White House deputy press secretary Hogan Gidley took a jab at the former Texas congressman during an interview with Fox News on Thursday, correcting anchor Bill Hemmer when he referred to the newly announced 2020 candidate by his nickname.

“Beto O’Rourke is now in the game for the Democratic primary, what does the president think about that?” Hemmer asked Gidley, referring to O’Rourke’s announcement on Thursday that he was running for president.

“First of all, you pronounced it wrong, it’s Robert Francis, that’s number one,” Gidley quipped. “Number two, we don’t care who gets in the race, the fact is the president’s going to win re-election.”

He went on to discuss how Democrats will have to “answer for their new set of policies which is making American socialist.”

“The president stands for the American people, he’s done that the entire time,” Gidley said, calling out Democrats and their policies on “those who are born and killed outside the womb. They want that to be the norm. And they also are standing for a Green New Deal that would absolutely destroy this economy, ruin people in poverty across the world who rely on fossil fuels and would destroy American lives.”

“You answered that question by calling him Robert Francis, “Hemmer circled back. “Is that how the president will refer to him?”

“Well, he has called him that before on the campaign trail,” Gidley chuckled. “And why wouldn’t he, that’s his name.”

The 46-year-old three-term congressman, who was defeated in the midterm elections last year by Sen. Ted Cruz, had previously insisted that he would not be running for president in 2020.

President Trump reacted to news of O’Rourke’s announcement by remarking on his hand gestures.

“I’ve never seen so much hand movement,” Trump told reporters.”I’ve actually never seen anything quite like it.”

O’Rourke had explained during his Senate campaign that he has been called “Beto,” the Spanish nickname for Roberto, since he was born in El Paso, Texas near the Mexico border.

On Twitter Thursday, “Robert Francis” was getting a lot of attention.


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