'NY Times' Scrubs Obama Comment About Not Understanding Americans' Terrorism Anxiety

I'm sure the president is quite appreciative of how the New York Times has his back.

In an off-the-record interview with several liberal news outlets and websites, President Obama offered a doozy of an explanation for why he appears to be so sanguine about the terror threat. The New York Times relayed the gist of his comments:

In his meeting with the columnists, Mr. Obama indicated that he did not see enough cable television to fully appreciate the anxiety after the attacks in Paris and San Bernardino, and made clear that he plans to step up his public arguments.

Two devastating terrorist attacks in a matter of weeks -- one in an American city -- and he needs to watch TV to fully appreciate the anxiety of the American people?

I don't blame him for cocooning himself. If I had contributed to the kind of chaotic world we live in today, I'd be embarrassed and depressed too.

But as bad as the comment was, the New York Times upped the controversy several degrees by deleting the above passage on the website. Their explanation? Edited for "space."

The version of the New York Times story that was published early Thursday evening indicated that Obama knew he was out of touch with the country on terrorism, and he thought that was due to not watching enough television. Obama critics immediately pounced on the stunning admission from the president, expressing shock that he would claim that a lack of TV time was the real reason for him not understanding Americans’ anxiety about terrorism.

As of Friday morning, however, the passage containing Obama’s admission was gone. Newsdiffs.org, a web site which captures changes made to online news stories, indicates that the major revision to the NYT story happened late on Thursday night, several hours after the story was published (text with a red background and strike-through is text that was eliminated from the story; text with a green background is text that was added to the story since its last revision):

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The unexplained deletion of that major passage wasn’t the only significant change made to the story since it was first published. The Times' editors also changed the story’s headline four separate times, according to Newsdiffs.org. Each headline revision either put Obama in a better light or put the GOP in a worse one.