For all the whining that the White House press corps has been doing of late about its inability to "cover" the president while he was on yet another vacation, you might think that these long-suffering reporters could come up with a real question once they did get a chance to talk to him.
And they certainly would, if the president were a Republican. But since he's the leftist Democrat that almost all of them worship, no one was feeling up to committing some actual journalism once President Obama returned to the White House last night. Instead, they decided, in unison, to ask about whether or not he was able to defeat golf star Tiger Woods when the two hit the links in Hawaii:
“Did you beat Tiger!?” a group of assembled reporters yelled as President Obama touched down on the South Lawn last night after his weekend golf trip.
According to the pool report, Obama just smiled and walked inside.
Very little is known about the president’s golf trip in Florida, as the press complained about their lack of access to the President’s weekend golf trip – including his golf game with Tiger Woods.
Apparently, this is the sort of question that people working for “the legitimate news media” are supposed to ask.
Then again, yesterday’s embarrassment is hardly atypical for the left-wing reporters who cover the Obama White House. Despite the whining from the likes of Politico’s Jim VandeHei and Mike Allen about how the press corps is just not smart enough to keep up with Team Obama’s supposed mastery of media, the truth is that the vast majority of America’s largest media operations will not hire people who do want to ask tough questions to Obama. Instead, they hire people who ask about golf scores instead of Benghazi.
This one incident is hardly an isolated affair. As we noted in January, during last year’s campaign, Obama held a private event for the news media where he was almost drooled over by the assembled press, according to a journalist who was there:
The behavior of the assembled press corps was telling. Everyone, myself included, swooned. Swooned! Head over heels. One or two might have even lost their minds,” Hastings writes, as each reporter had a chance to speak personally with the president. “We were all, on some level, deeply obsessed with Obama, crushing hard, still a little love there. This was nerd heaven, a politico’s paradise, the subject himself moving among us — shaking our hands, slapping our shoulders!
While it is true that Washington reporters do, in fact, want more ability to question President Obama, they have proven repeatedly that their primary interest in doing so is to fawn over him and parrot his latest talking points.
Update 18:00. Just to clarify, the group question about Obama's golf game was actually the only on-the-record question that journalists were permitted to ask. On his way back from Hawaii, he held an off-the-record briefing with reporters where they were allowed to ask him questions but could not report anything from the discussion. As Fox News host Greta Van Susteren noted earlier today, agreeing to this kind of briefing was an embarrassment:
What I don’t get is how the press AGREED to an OFF THE RECORD discussion with the President in the back of Air Force One on the way home from the vacation. The press sold out the American people. What is the point of speaking to the President if you can’t report what was said? Were the members of the press so awe struck that the President would wander to the back of the plane and give them a few minutes of attention that they agreed not to report it? The press totally caved. They failed us.
The press should have said when offered OFF THE RECORD face time with the President , ‘thanks but no thanks…we will wait until the President is willing to talk to the American people since that is our job ..No secret conversations.’
As someone who has asked tough questions of all sides, Van Susteren has credibility on this question. Sadly, her perspective is likely to be ignored.