Fox’s Peter Doocy Has No Choice But to Praise Joe Biden and Jen Psaki for ‘Answering Hard Questions’
It will take a long time to absorb just how much damage was done to the dignity of the most prestigious, powerful, and responsible complex in the world. Abraham Lincoln plotted with Grant to win the Civil War in the White House. Roosevelt broadcasted his fireside chats to get people through a worldwide depression and then win World War II, all from that building. JFK and Robert Kennedy might have saved humanity when faced with two contradicting statements from the Soviet Union during the Cuban Missile Crisis, they simply chose to answer the good and act like the bad one was never sent. George W. Bush cried on the night of 9-11. All in the White House, perhaps the most esteemed address on earth.
Donald Trump cheapened it like very few people thought possible in more ways than we can count. But it was especially cheap to see the White House spokesperson walk into the briefing room (occasionally) and play propaganda videos, answer questions with bald-faced lies, condescendingly insulting reporters, and then huffing out like a petulant child.
It was humiliating.
But Joe Biden is trying to bring respect and dignity back to the place and he has a good partner in his spokesperson Jen Psaki. Psaki got off to a bit of a nervous start, stumbled around a bit – no shame in it, but in her entire time, she has treated the reporters with respect while not giving ground. She is following her boss’s lead.
The change is so obvious that Peter Doocy ended up admitting that the White House was being fair to reporters and that it was appreciated. This was likely hard for Doocy to do, he reports to MAGAs who do not even think Biden is president. But what was Doocy going to do? Biden said he liked Doocy because he asks hard questions:
On the heels of Fox Corp. CEO Lachlan Murdoch’s declaration that the chief role of Fox News is to be the “loyal opposition” to Biden’s White House, The Los Angeles Times has published an interview with Doocy in which the reporter praised Biden’s willingness to answer “hard” questions.
Asked “Did it surprise you when Biden said publicly that he liked you?”, Doocy said it didn’t, but that Biden’s response was gratifying.
“[T]he way that he framed it was what a reporter would want to hear, right?” Doocy told the paper. “He knows that it’s going to be a hard question with an edge, but ‘I like him anyway.’ And that means he is up for the hard questions, and it sounds like he’s going to keep taking them. So more than a surprise, it kind of just made me hopeful that that will continue over the next couple years. There are so few opportunities to be in the room with him, but it sounds like when we are, he’ll be listening for us.”
Well, Lachlan can go pluck himself. The press is not supposed to be in “opposition” to the White House. We are supposed to all be Americans. The press can be “fearless” in testing the White House’s facts and a search for truth. Regardless, Peter Doocy couldn’t help but compliment this White House and the new dignified tone.
It says a lot, but there is a lot more work to do.
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