Some dangling participles today from Joe Biden’s first presidential press conference with an emphasis on reporters not really doing their jobs (I touched on this yesterday) and seeking out shit not needed to be sought (via a review of the event at CJR):
Dan Froomkin, the journalism critic, said that the presser created the impression that as “Biden is trying to solve problems, the press corps is trying to create them,” and observed that, in the case of the border, Biden now “has to fact-check the media,” after four years of the opposite.
Burn! While some nit-twit journalists cried about hurt feelings:
This is literally a video of Peter Doocy complaining that he doesn't get to ask questions the White House while asking a question at the White House https://t.co/vbQkIH2jWh
— Hunter Walker (@hunterw) March 26, 2021
Written summary of the above via The Hill this afternoon:
Fox News reporter Peter Doocy confronted White House press secretary Jen Psaki on Friday after the network did not get to ask a question of President Biden at his first press conference.
At Friday’s press briefing, Doocy noted that Biden had a list of journalists to call on and that Fox News was the only member of the five network press pool to not get to ask a question of the president.
“I’m curious if that is official administration policy,” Doocy said.
“We’re here having a conversation, aren’t we?” Psaki responded.
“And do I take questions from you every time I come to the briefing room? Has the president taken questions from you since he came into office, yes or no?”
Doocy said that Biden sometimes responds to his shouted questions at White House events but that when Biden has a list in front of him he never calls on Fox News, dating back to the campaign.
“I’m just curious with this list that he is given,” Doocy said.
“The only member of the five network pool never on it dating back to when he resumed in-person events in Wilmington during the campaign.”
Psaki noted that she takes questions from Doocy every day in the briefing room and that she regularly appears on “Fox News Sunday.”
“I’d say that I’m always happy to have this conversation with you, even about the awesome socks you are wearing today, and have a conversation with you even when we disagree,” she said.
“The president has taken your questions and I’m looking forward to doing ‘Fox News Sunday’ this Sunday for the third time in the last few months.”
Doocy is a knuckleheaded asshole. What the fuck does ‘shouted questions‘ actually mean, other than he thinks it’s cool to scream lame-ass queries to Biden about Hunter Biden, or what was the subject matter in the phone call with Putin? (‘“You. He sends his best!”‘).
Last night on Fox News, Doocy whined he’d had ‘“a binder full of questions”‘ for Biden during the president’s news conference, but wasn’t called — boo-hoo.
Regarding reporters and Biden’s presser yesterday, Eric Boehlert’s thrice-weekly PressRun this morning has a good recap of the event, and once again, thumbs-up to Joe:
Talk about a seismic shift from the Trump years, when the entirety of policy discussion could be squeezed onto the back of a matchbook. Back then, reporters were also lied to nonstop at press conferences, and personally denigrated in front of the cameras.
As Biden now constantly does, he flipped the script. Affable and at times folksy, Biden was his usual self, offering a common sense outlook to practical governance: “I can’t guarantee we’re going to solve everything, but I can guarantee we can make everything better. We can change the lives of so many people.”
Overall, Biden delivered a strong, one-hour performance during his inaugural press conference, which must have felt like a colossal letdown for the Beltway media.
Journalists had spent weeks mindlessly hyping the idea that Biden was hiding from the press and its legions of truth-seekers.
The unending desire by the media to turn Biden’s press conference into two-week, navel-gazing “news” story was something to behold.
The strangest part of the Thursday press conference? Biden wasn’t asked a single question about Covid, which has dominated every waking day of American life for the last 13 months, and has claimed more than half-a-million lives.
Biden was asked twice if he planned on running for re-election in 2024, and he was peppered with questions about the border, a story Republicans have been pounding for weeks as a “crisis” for the administration. On that issue, the White House press corps was in step with the GOP and tacitly framed their multiple border questions around Republican talking points.
Here’s the reality: Trump made news popular for four years, giving outlets across the country sizeable bumps in readership and viewership as Trump remained committed to creating news all day, every day with his cascade of lies, taunts, and erratic behavior.
And Beltway journalists loved it — they loved being in the middle of the tumult and being the creators of the roiling content.
That’s all gone now with Biden, who has made a conscious decision to avoid the spotlight and to not needlessly interject himself into every news cycle the way narcissist Trump did. By turning the temperature way down, by refusing to manufacture news where none exists in the name of partisan warfare and general chaos, Biden is denying journalists their professional momentum.
Add to that the fact that Biden slow-walked his way to his first press conference, as compared to his predecessors who held them sooner, and that D.C. journalists hold up pressers as the pinnacle form of presidential communication, and journalists get cranky.
They want White House performances. That’s why they tried to turn Biden’s lack of a press conference into a national news story, when it’s really just inside baseball chatter.
Searching for a path forward in the post-Trump world, the Beltway press is frantically trying to generate controversy where none exists.
A situation which could prove troublesome in the future if the press get’s antsy for Upchuck Todd bullshit, and whines about ‘binders’ and lack of something or another.
Ah…the good-old days:
Does still make the flesh crawl, huh?
(Illustration: Salvador Dali’s ‘Soft Watch at the Moment of First Explosion,’ found here).