David Kirkpatrick

September 23, 2008

Media v. McCain

Filed under: Media, Politics — Tags: , , , , , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 1:27 pm

For about as long as he’s been a national figure, McCain has enjoyed a very cozy — you could even say deferential — relationship with the media. The warm feelings are over.

Very stupidly the McCain campaign (I’m guessing under the instructions of Steve Schmidt) is hiding his vice presidential pick away to an unprecedented level, routinely cancels press pool events and actually is calling out pool journalists by name and claiming the singled-out are “in the tank” for Obama.

The end result of this hostility from the McCain campaign will be a hard pushback by the media. Whenever Palin actually goes before an open mike and takes real questions and not canned softballs, she’ll be eviscerated. It’s clear she has little to no grasp on almost any policy issue, or even area for that matter, and a documented propensity to lie through a tough spot rather than face the facts.

Battling the press is a no-win situation when you are trying to gain elected office.

This report from Marc Ambinder may detail the moment when the media has decided the gloves are off.

From the (second) link:

But just a little more than an hour before Palin’s first meeting was set to begin, the pool producer was notified that he would not be allowed in to the photo spray. This means that the McCain/Palin campaign would get the benefit of free pictures of Palin’s meeting with world leaders without having to face the possibility that the candidate might have to answer a question from the media.
 
Television networks, including <B>CBS News</b> maintain a policy that if they are prevented from having an editorial presence at an event, they will not allow cameras to shoot.

Hence — no more network/national coverage of pool events Which might work for the McCain campaign because local TV coverage of Palin is usually much less skeptical.
A stand-off between the media and the McCain campaign.

The transgression? Apparently last week, CBS News’s Scott Conroy had the temerity to ask a question of Palin during an OTR session.

Who blinks first?  UPDATE: A CNN pool producer was allowed into a camera spray of Gov. Palin’s meeting with Hamid Karzai for all of 29 seconds. No other pencils, as they call them, were allowed in.

Now — in an effort to build some good will, the McCain campaign has scheduled a press conference this afternoon — his first since August 13.