Valued reader DRJ makes a great catch, digging up an item from Roll Call that suggests that Jay Carney decides who will get called on at Obama’s press conferences:
“I’m just going through my list, guys. Talk to Jay.”
President Barack Obama, referring any reporter complaints about who was being called on at Tuesday’s White House news briefing to White House Press Secretary Jay Carney.
DRJ’s observation: ” I’d like to know whether Carney talks to the reporters before deciding who to call on. After all, he has to make sure they agree to stay on script.”
Maybe Carney doesn’t have to talk to them privately. He talks to them every day, and knows who the lapdogs are. In fact, many have questioned the usefulness of White House briefings, since Carney blatantly lies, stonewalls, and obfuscates about every embarrassing issue. But perhaps the briefings serve a useful purpose — not for Americans, who get zero useful information, but rather for the White House, which gets to take the pulse of the White House press corps, and make judgments about which of its individual members are safe to call on at a press conference.
So if it puzzles you that a press conference could last over an hour, with not one single question being asked about the vindictive manner in which Obama has managed the slowdown, and not one single question being asked about the absurdly embarrassing ObamaCare rollout . . . be not puzzled, my friends. All is going according to plan.
The bottom line is that, after yesterday, we know that press conferences are as useless as the White House briefings. We should stop treating them as significant because they aren’t. They are a platform to get out the White House message, and interference with that critical mission Will Not Be Tolerated.