Here’s how Washington Post reporter Michael Shear opens his front page story about the Obama administration’s offer, via Bill Clinton, of a position to Joe Sestak:
For nearly three months this year, President Obama and his senior White House aides resisted acknowledging what the top West Wing lawyer finally admitted on Friday: This administration plays politics.
I have three observations about this paragraph. First, shouldn’t a news report begin by presenting the facts of the story, rather than the reporter’s conclusion about the meaning of those facts?
Second, Shear’s conclusion about the meaning of the facts surrounding the White House-Clinton-Sestak story strikes me as pretty close to the mark.
Third, does anyone suppose that, if the same facts had arisen during the administration of George W. Bush, the Post would have reached the same conclusion about their meaning? I don’t. I agree with John McCain:
Imagine if this was the Bush administration. The media wolf pack would be in full cry. But this is something we’ve grown used to. We have a compliant media. The good thing is that the American people have figured it out. They’re not being guided by the views of the mainstream media. If they were, the president’s polls wouldn’t be where they are.