Here’s one for you in the category of you-just-can’t-make-this-up. In a story that sounds more like a snippet from The Onion or a “Saturday Night Live” Weekend Update skit, President Obama told reporters during a private meeting this week that he “did not see enough cable television to fully appreciate the anxiety after the attacks in Paris and San Bernardino.” As a result, he suggested, he also reportedly said he plans to “step up his public arguments.”
While the comments were initially reported by The New York Times, they disappeared without explanation later.
Via The Blaze:
The comments, first reported by New York Times chief White House correspondent Peter Baker and reporter Gardiner Harris, were later seemingly scrubbed by the newspaper without an explanation in the story.
The Washington Post’s Erik Wemple included the comments in his reporting before they disappeared from the New York Times report:
In today’s piece, Baker captured an Obama confession that doubles as a back-handed endorsement of this world’s CNNs and Fox Newses: “In his meeting with the columnists, Mr. Obama indicated that he did not see enough cable television to fully appreciate the anxiety after the attacks in Paris and San Bernardino, and made clear that he plans to step up his public arguments,” write Baker and Harris. “Republicans were telling Americans that he is not doing anything when he is doing a lot, he said.” Baker did not reply to an online request for clarification from Wall Street Journal columnist James Taranto on Thursday.
If Baker keeps at it, perhaps Obama will do the right thing, and just say these self-interested things on the record, where they belong. And lest anyone tweet nonsense about ethical considerations here, be it known that Baker and Harris are trodding Poynter-approved turf: Though the columnists attending these get-togethers are bound not to quote the president, Baker and Harris live under no such constraint.
The New York Times later suggested the comments were “trimmed for space” — though, as some have pointed out, the rewrite was longer than the original.
So our president needs the help of cable news to connect him to the gravity of emotion and anxiety surrounding things like 130 people out enjoying a Friday evening, or 14 people at a company Christmas party, brutally murdered out of the blue? And sees his job as leading the nation in times of crisis as a matter of “public argument” — all about furthering his ideological agenda.
Yeah, sounds about right when we’re talking about President Obama.
For a president who repeatedly pleads ignorance about important issues until having “seen them on the news” just like us normal Americans, his comments actually shouldn’t be all that surprising. And that a liberal media outlet such as the New York Times would make a move to protect President Obama by removing such revealing — and, should be, embarrassing — comments he made also should not be surprising really.
[Note: This article was written by Michelle Jesse, Associate Editor]