Although it doesn't get a lot of attention in the blogosphere, the Associated Press is, quite arguably, the most important news outlet in the world with its content appearing in tens of thousands of newspapers and websites around the world. Judging from a gushing speech by AP president Dean Singleton, the wire service is making no bones about being firmly in the camp of President Obama.
Dean was obsequious in his praise for Obama, telling an audience for the AP's annual luncheon that the president had "pushed through Congress the biggest economic recovery plan in history and led a government reorganization of two of the Big Three American auto manufacturers to save them from oblivion."
Never mind that the "recovery plan" has produced the worst post-recession economic growth in history and that GM and Chrysler could easily have been reconstituted had normal bankruptcy procedures been followed, that was far from the only fulsome praise that Singleton had for Obama. As Washington Times columnist Charles Hurt noted, the former newspaper magnate was beside himself, acting like a "newshound in heat."
But for the assembled "news" hounds — the most vaunted gathering of news executives from around the country — it was all very serious swooning. They were like a bunch of dogs in heat.
Dean Singleton, chairman of the AP board, introduced Mr. Obama. No, actually, it was more like he proposed to him. Sang him an icky love song in which he reminisced about all their hot dates and then pledged his undying love forever.
The only way you know that the White House didn't actually write the introduction as they often do when the president speaks is simply that Mr. Singleton's Valentine essay was so over-the-top fawning that even they were probably embarrassed — if that is possible.
He began by sweetly recalling their first encounter, when Mr. Obama was just a junior senator and invited to the august luncheon to share "his vision for America." Mr. Singleton recalled their first lover's quarrel over mispronouncing Mr. Obama's name and "his genteel way" of correcting him.
"Today," he continued, "There is no mistaking his name and even I can't mess up: It is Mr. President!"
Marilyn Monroe never uttered the word so lustily.
In addition to gushing over Obama's policy agenda, Singleton was quick to defend the president using typical liberal boilerplate saying how he "inherited the headwinds of the worst economic recession since the Great Depression" and in such difficult straits, "who would want this job in the first place?" He also threw in an obligatory line about how American politics is "polarized," not bothering to mention that Obama's perpetually petty and vicious attacks on those who disagree have certainly been the source of much such divisiveness.
Video of Singleton's speech is below:
The full transcript of Singleton's remarks follows, as transcribed by the MRC's Scott Whitlock:
DEAN SINGLETON: Two years later, in 2008, as a presidential candidate, he spoke again to the AP luncheon. In a Q&A after his speech, I asked him a question from the audience related to how he might deal with Obama bin Laden, if elected. In his always genteel way, he asked, might you be referring to Osama bin Laden? It was a slip of the tongue heard around the world. Thanks to the delights of our digital age, and YouTube in particular, I won't soon escape that embarrassing moment, even four years later. But we do have the answer to the question.
Today [pauses for laughter], there is no mistaking his name and even I can't mess it up. It's Mr. President. President Obama made history as the first minority to be elected President. Even many who opposed his election felt proud of our country as he took the oath of office. As President, he inherited the headwinds of the worst economic recession since the Great Depression. He pushed through Congress the biggest economic recovery plan in history and led a government reorganization of two of the big three auto manufacturers to save them from oblivion. He pursued domestic and foreign policy agendas that were controversial to many, highlighted by his signature into law of the most comprehensive health care legislation in history.
And the budget plans proposed by the President, on the one hand, and Republicans on the other hand, aren't even on the same planet. Many Democrats believe that his agenda doesn't go far enough and most Republicans believe it goes way too far. While we thought the 2008 White House race was rough and tumble, the 2012 race makes it look like bumper cars by comparison. Our country has become more polarized. The one percent and the 99 percent are at each others' throats. Campaigns are now funded by secretive, multi-million dollar super PACs. What's next? Giga-PACs? The only thing anyone seems willing to compromise on is– well, I can't think of anything.
Really, who would want this job in the first place? We're very honored today to have the man currently holding the office and aspiring for it for another term. And, with apologies to Al Green, my new favorite singer. Ladies and gentlemen, the President of the United States of America.