Yikes. The only thing missing from Steve Kroft's interview with Barack Obama and Joe Biden on CBS's 60 Minutes (Sun. 8/31/08) was an "Obama/Biden '08" button on Kroft's lapel. As NB's Brent Baker has already noted, Kroft teed one up for Obama by presuming Sarah Palin had "less experience" than he did. But take a look at some of the softball questions Kroft lobbed at Obama and Biden:
Blistering, eh? But there's more:
Gee, you'd think with Kroft claiming that the Bush administration is the "most unpopular" in history, we'd hear some hard-hitting questions about some specifics about what these two plan to do if elected. Iraq? Iran? Afghanistan? Russia? The Middle East? The economy? International trade? Energy solutions? Healthcare? Abortion? Education? None of these issues were addressed.
The closest that Kroft came to even being the slightest bit challenging was when he addressed Obama's attempts to attract blue-collar voters by drinking beer and bowling. Kroft told Obama that "I know you don't particularly like [to drink beer]." Obama responded with near outrage and firmly asserted he did like beer! "I had a beer last night! I mean, where do these stories come from, man? Where does the story come from that I don't like beer? C'mon, man."
As for his bowling excursion, Obama claimed, "The reason I bowled wasn't to try to get votes ... The reason I was there was to campaign." Kroft didn't bother to ask Obama what the difference between "trying to get votes" and "campaigning" is.
There was also this little exchange between Kroft and Biden:
KROFT: You've had from time to time put your foot in your mouth. I'm sure Sen. Obama is aware of that.
BIDEN (laughing): Everyone's aware of it.
Kroft offered no examples, though he had plenty to choose from. No embarrassing videotape. Nothing. Kroft continued:
KROFT: There was an issue in 1988 involving plagiarism, which I'm sure the Republicans are working on a campaign commercial now.
BIDEN: I'm sure that's probably true.
Kroft didn't explain how he's so sure that "Republicans are working on a campaign commercial now" about a 20-year-old issue. But, more importantly, Kroft could have asked a challenging question. Instead, look at where Kroft went with it:
KROFT: What have you learned about politics and running for office in those 20 years?
Good ... grief.
Then there was this lame attempt by Kroft:
KROFT: You've had some differences over pretty substantial issues. Iraq, for one.
Biden began his response:
BIDEN: Actually, we haven't.