Obama in bed with the press?

June 20, 2009

President Barack Obama poked fun at his close relationship with the press on Friday and teased radio and TV correspondents their industry “was more relevant than ever,” despite more and more Americans turning elsewhere for news.

Obama said he had trouble coming up with fresh jokes after delivering a similar routine just five weeks ago at the annual White House correspondents dinner, a glitzy affair attracting big Hollywood stars.

“The jokes may not be as good, but neither is the guest list,” Obama said at the Radio and Television Correspondents  Associations Dinner. “For me, there’s no contest. Why bother hanging out with celebrities, when I can spend time with the people who made me one?”

“A few nights ago, I was up tossing and turning trying to figure exactly what to say. Finally, when I couldn’t get back to sleep, I rolled over and asked (NBC News anchor) Brian Williams what he thought,” Obama said.

Williams recently hosted a gushing two-night special that took viewers “Inside the Obama White House,” and featured such hard-hitting spots as the president firing up his motorcade to pick up hamburgers for his staff. “The truth is, Brian Williams is actually a terrible house guest. He put an empty milk carton back in the fridge. He leaves his wet towels all over the Roosevelt room. We’re pretty sure he clogged the toilet and didn’t tell anybody,” Obama said to roars from the crowd.

Obama joked was he spending much of his time rescuing failed banks and auto companies, but “you probably wouldn’t understand the concept of troubled industries working as you do in radio and television.”

When that joke got a tepid response, Obama sensed he had hit a sore spot and added: “Ho ho. We don’t joke about that. That’s not funny.”

“Despite the flood of new media, I think your programing is more relevant than ever before at least that’s the impression I get when I read the blogs every day,” Obama said.

(Additional reporting by Wendell Marsh)

Photo credit: Reuters/Larry Downing


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WOW – be careful Mr. President – at some point, that dog you keep abusing will turn around a bite you!

Oh, who am I kidding – it was actually a funny joke. I think the President knows that the best humor has a touch of truth in it. I think joking that Brian Williams is in bed with you is VERY funny because it has a LOT of truth in it. We all know the President could have substituted any of a number of “journalists” name for Brian Williams’.

To Brian Williams I have a couple of questions – deep down, somewhere deep in what’s left of the journalist inside you (if there is anything left), aren’t you just the least bit ashamed? Good God man, after all this, have you no self-respect? I know it was said tongue-in-cheek, but the President is MOCKING YOU! He has no (none, nada, zilch) respect for you – the anchor of a national newscast! Are you really that naive to think that a man that would mock you like this would not lie to you, any time he feels like it? Wake up, Brian – your professional stature is leaving the building.

Posted by Steve Stechschulte | Report as abusive

Obama and the media shills who shamelessly fail to report on the real agenda in American politics will one day all be tried as traitors. One world government may be an inevitability in the course of human history, however it most definately should not be in the hands of an international banking conglomerate using the military industrial complex as its enforcer. An intelligence apparatus has been implimented and swung back around on the American people and all the while the public sleeps, unaware of the tyranny being forced upon them. Stop the New World Order or face annihilation of our way of life. All that we know is at an end. Time to face the facts children

Posted by Truther | Report as abusive

Were the first clues the multi billion dollar no bid contracts awarded to General Electric by the Obama administration immediately after the election? General Electric is the parent company of all the NBC networks but I would not want to confuse anyone with facts. GE is driving Obama’s propaganda machine in return for big government contracts. Or would it be the freedom of speech trampling legislation being pushed by the Democrats trying to squash what have become dissident voices in America?

Posted by Alpha Blogger | Report as abusive

[…] advisory board. And that GE is the parent company of NBC Universal. It’s also well known that NBC News is in bed with President Obama, who even joked about it at a recent media event: “A few nights ago, I was up tossing and turning […]

Posted by The Corner Office mobile edition | Report as abusive

[…] has been a running joke that NBC is in bed with the Obama administration. Two weeks after Brian Williams special, Obama joked about his relationship with NBC […]

Posted by Keith Olbermann: Worst Person in the World? : media convergence matters | Report as abusive