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Obama plays down encounter with Arizona governor

Thursday - 1/26/2012, 6:36pm  ET

WASHINGTON (AP) - President Barack Obama says his encounter with Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer has been "blown out of proportion" and was not a big deal.

Obama spoke with ABC's Diane Sawyer about the Wednesday incident at the airport tarmac in Mesa, Ariz. After the two were observed in intense conversation, Brewer told reporters Obama had complained to her about his depiction in her book "Scorpions for Breakfast." The governor wrote that the president lectured her condescendingly about immigration.

Obama said it's good publicity for a Republican to argue with him _ but that it was no big deal and that he told Brewer in response to her request that he'd be happy to meet with her.

He said it's a classic example of things getting blown out of proportion.


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 This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)