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The PJ Tatler

Bridget Johnson


March 3, 2013 - 10:46 am

The White House strategy for trying to bottle up the Bob Woodward controversy? Pile on the charm to make people think that the legendary Washington Post reporter had an irrational overreaction.

Gene Sperling, top adviser on President Obama’s economic council, told ABC News this morning that the exchange was actually “polite.”

“I do truly believe you should rethink your comment about saying saying that Potus asking for revenues is moving the goal post. I know you may not believe this, but as a friend, I think you will regret staking out that claim,” Sperling wrote in the email, which was later referenced by Woodward in the context of this administration trying to bully reporters.

“I’ve known Bob Woodward for 20 years. We’ve had a very friendly, and respectful relationship. I think virtually everybody who has looked at my email to him, and his reply to me, though those emails reflected that degree of respect, and — and politeness,” Sperling told George Stephanopoulos today.

“And the emails were fundamentally substantive. I was — I was arguing a case as to why I believe the president asking for balance is consistent with where things have been for the last several years. So all I can say, George is that Bob Woodward is — is a legend. I hope that him and I can put this behind us.”

Sperling did say, however, that he hadn’t talked with Woodward about the emails and fallout.

“I hope we can put it behind us. Because I think we both care about the policy issues we were debating, and I think we both think that that’s where the focus of our — our national debate should be, not on — not on our email exchange,” he said.

Bridget Johnson is a veteran journalist whose news articles and opinion columns have run in dozens of news outlets across the globe. Bridget first came to Washington to be online editor at The Hill, where she wrote The World from The Hill column on foreign policy. Previously she was an opinion writer and editorial board member at the Rocky Mountain News and nation/world news columnist at the Los Angeles Daily News. She is an NPR contributor and has contributed to USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, National Review Online, Politico and more, and has myriad television and radio credits as a commentator. Bridget is Washington Editor for PJ Media.

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"I think we both care about the policy issues we were debating"

This is not a debate. He is a reporter, you are doing public relations. He asks a question, and you have the choice of answering, or ignoring it. Or, as in this case, you can stick your foot in your mouth.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
The Øbama imaginarium continues. Ideas and themes pop in and out of view randomly.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
As a stand-alone 'incident' this is probably much ado about nothing. Trouble is there has been a track record by the Obummer organization of harassing and intimidating reporters, and their shameful attacks of supporters of ABO (Anyone But Obama). Even worse is the occasions where the MSM take after supporters of ABO - and reporters that are actually asking tough questions - few that they are. IMO Bob Woodward will come out on top - hence the reason why Sperling seems to be trying to walk this back. Three questions: Will this have much impact on Obummer in the long run? Is the MSM finally beginning to ignore the daily talking points in favor of actually 'reporting' the news? Will this finally stop Obummer from saying anything he likes and claiming its the truth?

Only time will tell.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
"those emails reflected that degree of respect, and — and politeness"

Those emails do not erase history nor context.

If you were yelling and angry before you sent them, then THAT'S the context.

If I yell at you and scream at you...then send you an email saying "nice little dog you have there, would be a shame if anything happened to it", that would have an entirely different context than it would in a vacuum.

In addition, if there wasn't an already established atmosphere of tyranny surrounding ANYONE who dares to ask a question (Joe the Plumber..investigated, two reporters on the campaign trail...thrown off the plane...Stanley Kurtz...stonewalled at the library,....then it would be ARGUABLE that this administration and its lackeys had a Little Sally Jumprope innocence.

But the pattern and practice of tyranny is evident, compelling and irrefutable.

It's a lawless empire and the Emperor Severus IS a dictator.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
So polite that you apologized for yelling at him? Thuggish regime.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
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