The PJ Tatler

Poynter: Obama's press scolding on birtherism was totally unwarranted

President Obama used his press briefing today to scold the press for spending too much time focusing on the birth certificate issue. But according to Poynter, there has been no press obsession with the question at all (a fact that has been obvious to everyone outside the White House for some time, by the way).

For the week of April 11-17, the economy accounted for 39 percent of news coverage.

That same week, Donald Trump’s revival of citizenship questions accounted for ‘much of the attention directly on the Obama administration, at 4% of the newshole,’ PEJ reports.

Last week, Trump did receive more media attention, according to PEJ’s index. The 2012 election accounted for 8 percent of the newshole, making it the third biggest story, with 3 percent of the newshole specifically focused on Obama, primarily the question of where he was born.

Some of that coverage was related to Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer’s veto of a bill that would have required presidential candidates to provide proof of birth.

So…Donald Trump was a rising story, but the birth certificate itself, not so much. It’s tempting to speculate that Obama used today’s release to make the birth certificate a bigger story, to distract from the story that the press has spent 39% of its time covering: Namely, the economy.