As of now, I am in control here, in the White House

No Questions Since April 5 for Obama

That’s what my friend Julie Mason over at POLITICO figured out and has shared with us all.

Jules noticed that the openness president has stopped taking questions from the White House press corps, though White House Press Secretary Jay Carney promises, PROMISES he’ll do so soon.

Obama not only takes fewer questions, he’s stamped out a couple of traditional forums for getting them in.

Obama looks angry
"Are you trying to ask a question, punk?"
photo by Keith Koffler

Something Bill Clinton and the sinister and secretive George W. Bush did just about every week that the openness president never does anymore is take a question or two during “pool sprays,” those brief hits when the White House pool enters a room – usually the Oval Office – where the president has been meeting with some foreign dignitary or some Congressional dignitary, or some other very dignified person.

The president and the dignified person would make a statement and then the president takes a couple of questions – usually about the news of the day – allowing him to weigh in and keep the country informed about his thinking.

Another avenue to quiz the leader of the free world was the post-statement mini-news conference. Bush and Clinton would come out, make a statement about something, and then take questions for 5, 10, 20 minutes or more, often in the Rose Garden.

Not Obama.

The White House notes that Obama likes to do sit down interviews, most recently his softball hitting practice session with Steve Kroft of CBS.

But this approach denies the country a regular view of the president’s thinking and avoids the diversity of questioning he might get at a regular or mini-news conferences. He’s also not forced to think so much on his feet during the one-on-ones, since he takes more time to prepare for the interview, which is often focused on a particular topic.

Obama also talks to a lot of local interviewers, who are often intimidated or just gentler than national correspondents and ask questions about local stuff. These are sessions are, more than anything, tools to get the president on TV in local markets in states he needs to win in 2012.

Maybe the White House should just abandon all pretense and let the press secretary and his deputies interview Obama from now on. I mean, that’s about what happened when they nominated Elena Kagan for the Supreme Court. Remember this polished piece of puffery?

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22 Responses to No Questions Since April 5 for Obama

  1. allowing him to weigh in and keep the country informed about his thinking.

    Sometimes I feel like a need a BREAK from hearing about his so-called thinking.

  2. So, are we to think that His Wonderfulness is not quite as wonderful as we were lead to believe by the MSM and His Wonderfulness’ handlers? Wow, what a surprise. Mr. Brainy can’t think on his feet? Does Mr. Intellectual have to consult his notes when Michelle asks him whether he prefers Arugula or Endive for supper? I wonder what the outcome would have been if a shoe had been thrown at the head of Mr. Fabulous instead of GWB? Probably would have conked him right in the noggin while he was busy consulting his belly button about the appropriate political response. What a joke.

  3. Thank you Keith. The press better wake up and realize this guy has his own media politburo and pretty soon the press will be deemed irrelevant. I’m not really surprised about his lack of forthrightness. That’s how his handlers control the message. Remember Anita Dunn and her admission that they control the press? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TLR5jHlytRg

  4. I’m not sure it is that useful asking him questions. He filibusters the answers. His answers are full of inconsistancies and lies. He really doesn’t allow himself to be questioned and after listening him going on and on for ten minutes who can even remember the question.

  5. I like visiting here, appreciate the views of others. It’s great having an inside peek at the WH and learning things that the MSM won’t tell us.
    He won’t allow questions from the Press like others did on a regular basis and the shut-out Press is miffed. So, what is the Press going to do about it?

    When the pubic became outraged at the Democrat controlled Congress and the crap they shoved down our throats, we did the only thing we could; we voted out as many as possible. We don’t like this President or his agenda and the only thing we can do is wait for 2012 to show our displeasure.
    If we can do this, then the Press, with all their concentrated power, can bring this President to the podium to answer questions.

    • Great points srdem. Passive, passive, passive. And of course there’s always the chance that if you complain too loudly, you don’t get the little tidbits they occasionally parse out on background. Reporters covet those too much.

  6. WHEN WAS THE LAST TIME PRES. OBAMA HAD A PRIME-TIME “NEWS CONFERENCE”???
    I am serious… When was the last time Pres. Obama ever had to ‘answer questions from the Media’? (granted, the White House Press Corp is nothing but a bunch of Sycophants who NEVER ask real questions…)

    Really!? When was the last time Obama had to appear before “the Media” & “America” during Prime-Time and answer questions off-the-cuff (with out a tele-prompter)

    • I wish Adny Cohen would have him on the Watch What’s Happening call-in show–so we could call in. Well, that would ruin the show, but couldn’t he do call-ins someplace?

      • Pres. Obama do a ‘call-in show’? -LMAO!
        Pres. Obama talking with lowly citizens who might ask Obama real questions…? -LMAO!

        Obama will not ‘answer’ questions from the White House Press Corps (re: sycophant propaganda media)… What are the chances Pres. Obama will ever take (unscreened) questions from lowly (ignorant) citizens…?

        • [wistfully] Andy has a drinking game on each show…you would get a shot everytime he says…say, Let me be very clear…” OK–bad idea–never mind.

  7. Remember the back yard get togethers where one of the guests asked BO a couple good questions related to his small business? Potus did not handle that one well at all.