In an unusual routine, President Barack Obama at his final White House press conference of the year on Friday called only on female members of the press corps --- eight of them --- for questions, leaving their male counterparts waving their hands to no avail, notes Grumpy Editor.
White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said the prepared list focused on “women from a variety of news organizations who day-in and day-out do the hard work of covering the president of the United States. As the questioner list started to come together, we realized that we had a unique opportunity to highlight that fact at the president’s closely watched, end-of-the-year news conference.”
Those called on during the session:
Carrie Budoff Brown, Politico, led it off, followed by ---
Cheryl Bolen, Bloomberg.
Julie Pace, Associated Press.
Lesley Clark, McClatchy.
Roberta Rampton, Reuters.
Colleen M. Nelson, The Wall Street Journal.
Juliet Eilperin, Washington Post.
April Ryan, American Urban Radio.
Getting to the podium 22 minutes beyond the scheduled start (throwing a curve to broadcast and cable TV networks regular programming) and before the questions, the president spent eight minutes recapping his accomplishments during the year “to make life better for ordinary Americans.”
Keith Koffler, award-winning journalist with 16 years experience covering Washington and noted for reporting, commentary and analysis at his whitehousedossier.com, said Obama was “relaxed, confident, completely dismissive of his opponents and bragging shamelessly about his achievements.”
While some news outlets trumpeted Obama’s remarks, Koffler commented:
“The president seems unaware that Democrats were destroyed in the last election; that the slaughter in Syria continues; that the economy has stirred to life only after five years of trying under his leadership; that the jobs being created ain’t that great, that incomes aren’t rising, and that more are simply out of the workforce than in 40 years; that the U.S. oil and gas boom occurred despite him, not because of him; that he blew Bush’s achievements in Iraq; that a whole new class of Islamists have been created for us to fight; that Iran is on the cusp of nuclear weapons; that people’s health insurance costs are on the rise and rationing is on the horizon. And on and on.”
FYI, IN CASE YOUR FAVORITE EDITORS MISSED THESE…
After a series of storms, following three years of drought, Los Angeles water officials --- noting the vast amount of rain water that surges down the Los Angeles River (which it has for years), emptying into the Pacific Ocean --- feel it would be a good idea to start collecting that runoff…That’s show biz. Fortune magazine’s Dec. 22 issue mentions, “The big question for the 2015 global economy is how dramatic China’s economic slowdown will be. Our answer? Meryl Streep dramatic.”…San Diego-based Bumble Bee Seafoods, founded in 1899 by a handful of dedicated fishermen and growing to become North America’s largest branded shelf-stable seafood company, is being acquired by Thai Union Frozen Products of Thailand…Magazine circulation directors remain busy needling subscribers. Bloomberg Businessweek sends out a “student renewal alert” to “avoid service interruption” at a $40 one-year rate --- double a prior pitch. Meanwhile, Consumer Reports, which spends a high amount on frequent printing, mailing and postage directed to subscribers, starts its “reminders to subscribers” five to six months before renewal time…Marking the end of a famous car-maker corporate name, Chrysler Group LLC changes its name to FCA US LLC linked to its parent, Fiat of Italy…The New York Times is without an advertising column following the departure of Stuart Elliott who wrote the feature for 23 years...The June 16 issue of People, with Hillary Clinton on the cover, was the magazine’s worst seller this year with 503,890 copies, reports Adweek…Debuting in Coos County, Ore. Jan. 6 will be the weekly Coquille Valley Courant with Shelby Case editor. Publisher Jeff Precourt says contrary to industry critics, newspapers are far from being a dying medium.
Much to read. With an eye toward running for president, Jeb Bush says he’s ready to release 250,000 emails from his years as Florida governor.