President Obama entered
the proverbial lion's den
Wednesday giving an interview to Fox News' Bret Baier. Seen
as a last ditch effort to promote
health reform, the exchange was scrappy and somewhat confrontational.
Baier zeroed in on the Democrats' controversial
"deem and pass"
strategy and interrupted the president when he
sidestepped the question. Before ending the interview, Baier apologized
for his interjections saying "I was trying to get the most for our
buck.” Was it a constructive interview? Commentary after the clip:
Focused on Process, writes Katie Connolly at Newsweek: "Baier refused to indulge Obama's verbosity. Most
reporters would similiarly push for answers in a combative interview
with somebody a bit less important. But they'd normally do it over
policy stances, actions or statements, not over their views on a
procedural tactic that both parties use. It was certainly out of the
ordinary for a Presidential interview, and after a while, watching him
badger Obama over process questions became irritating."
Disagree, Process Matters Right Now, counters Steve Krakauer at Mediaite: "While
Obama had answers for some of Baier’s specific questions about what was
contained in the bill, he wouldn’t comment on the process. Maybe it
won’t matter in six months looking back, but in this moment, it is still
relevant and valid. Baier came off looking sharp and prepared in what
was likely his most high-profile interview ever." The Washington Post's Howard Kurtz agrees. During the interview he
Baier interrupting Prez a lot but legitimately. O has a tendency to
- Either Way, the President Showed Courage, writes
Patrick at the conservative Political
Byline: "I have to give President Obama credit, after bashing Fox
News... he did show some guts by going into the lion’s den and going
head to head with Bret Baier. That took some serious guts. It could help
his image too; not with those on the hard right, but the independents,
who voted for the guy."
- Baier Did a Fine
Job, writes Archy Cary at Big Journalism: "Baier
was respectful, but not intimidated. Unlike most of the legacy media
interviewers, Baier understands that he represents more than himself and
his network. He represents the viewing public. It’s why the media has
been historically called the Fourth Estate."
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