Douglas Andrews / Mar. 26, 2021

Media Disgraces Itself at Biden Presser

A subservient press served up nothing but softballs to a seriously struggling president.

The first question from the White House Press Corps was a vicious two-parter asked by ABC’s Jonathan Karl: “Why did you lie to the American people? And why should we trust what you have to say now?”

Wait. You missed it? Well, that’s because Karl didn’t ask that question yesterday. He asked it on September 10, 2020, during one of many White House pressers held by then-President Donald Trump.

The point, of course, is that the media of today is unrecognizable in its newfound subservience to our nation’s chief executive. Joe Biden told a basketful of lies yesterday at his streak-snapping first-ever press conference, but no one in the assembled press corps had the temerity to trouble him with a tough question.

Why, it was almost as if it were all scripted, right down to detailed presidential cheat sheets and a call-them-by-number listing of journalists’ names and faces.

So much for speaking truth to power. So much for comforting the afflicted and afflicting the comfortable. So much for the aggressive and obnoxious Jim Acosta types. Instead, the atmosphere was unlike that of any presidential press conference ever — or certainly in the post-Watergate era.

Kayleigh McEnany, who was White House press secretary at the time of Jon Karl’s ambush of Trump, could only marvel at the night-and-day difference between that bunch of jackals and this bunch of pantywaists.

“An eerie silence prevailed during the press conference,” observed Power Line’s John Hinderaker. “Reporters held their breath as Biden weaved for minutes at a time through bizarre chains of association, hoping they would have some idea what he was talking about. This is in sharp contrast with President Trump’s press conferences, where he would get 10 seconds into an answer and the air would be filled with reporters trying to interrupt.”

At least the assembled media, during Donald Trump’s many press conferences, always paid him the compliment of bringing its meanest, nastiest, most partisan selves to the party. As for the media’s deferential treatment of Joe Biden, it seemed most interested in protecting him; in keeping him from falling and hurting himself.

“Stonewalled for 65 days by President Biden, reporters decided their first opportunity to question him should be used to let him monologue on his favorite topics,” wrote the New York Post editorial board. “It’s shocking how low the bar has been set for President Biden. He seemed confused going from questioner to questioner, rambling to the point where he finally said, exhausted, ‘…anyway.’”

Biden took ordered questions from 10 reporters. Fox News’s White House correspondent Peter Doocy didn’t rate a single one. That the administration avoided the nation’s most consequential news network speaks volumes about its fear of exposing Joe Biden to real questions from legit journalists.

Not even the hard-left Washington Post could defend the failure of their media brethren to ask even a single question about the dominant story of the past year — the pandemic.

Fox News media analyst Joe Concha was disgusted by what he saw. “This was a disgrace for most of the press corps and for the president,” he said. “[President Biden] said some outrageous things that demanded to be pressed on, and of course no one in the room can decide to do it.”

As David Rutz reported, “Concha took particular exception to PBS White House correspondent Yamiche Alcindor, who told Biden he was perceived as a ‘moral, decent man’ while asking him a question about the migrant border crisis that critics say is a direct response to his immigration policies.”

“Your tax dollars at work,” said Concha, noting that Alcindor’s praise of the president and her subsequent softball were “patently embarrassing to the profession.”

Alcindor also appeared to urge Biden to find a way around the Senate filibuster — a tool which Senator Biden had spent decades deploying and defending. “This wasn’t only bias in broad daylight,” Concha said. “It was activism.”

Indeed, activism is the essence of it. A healthy republic depends on many things, but few of them are as important as a free, fair, and ardently inquisitive press. But think about how far we’ve fallen in this regard: The institution that our Founders protected within the Constitution’s First Amendment has become a mob of naked advocates for one particular political party.

And worse: They’ve gone directly from hating the former American president to having pity on the current one.

(Updated.)

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