What did we learn from Obama's "Full Ginsburg"?

Supposedly irked at Fox's refusal to air his Joint Address to Congress earlier this month,  Obama doesn't need to find an excuse to deny access to a network that has been far more aggressive in finding fault with him than the other channels.  But if you're going to do 5 channels, what's the difference?  (This revisits 2007, when liberal bloggers forced Democrats to sit out a proposed FNC debate.  Not everyone was on board though.  Ohio Congressman Dennis Kucinich told me directly that he'd go on Fox, or on any place that would have him).

Was the President truly effective in going wall to wall, when perhaps just appearing one such show could make big news? Who knows?  But did he say anything truly remarkable?

I would posit that his comments on Afghanistan were of interest, especially in the wake of Bob Woodward's scoop Sunday night that the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan, General Stanley McChrystal, says he needs more troops (as many as 45,000, according to the New York Times) or else the war effort might fail.

Obama indicated that he may not automatically accept those recommendations when they officially come his way.   Either way, he'll take a political hit.  One of his few pockets of support from D.C. Republicans is on Afghanistan.

On the other side, anti-war liberals, many of whom rallied to Obama over John Edwards and Hillary Clinton because of his stance on Iraq, will have no excuse not to begin protesting louder that their President is now doubling down on a battle that many analysts say simply cannot be won.

Meanwhile, Fox News Sunday observed the shunning by the President by airing an exchange between the beleagured head of ACORN, Bertha Lewis, and California GOP Congressman Darrell Issa (though clearly Wallace could have done the interview without the pretense of an 'opposing' side to Ms. Lewis).

The ACORN leader gamely spoke of the community activist group's mission of helping out poor Black, Latino, Asian and Whites.  But after she herself called the actions of some staffers last week "indefensible", it wasn't easy.

Obama has another network interview lined up for tonight.  On David Letterman, who now's been getting his political groove on.  That might be worth tuning into.

On Sunday, President Obama did what no President before him has done since the major television networks added their Sunday morning public affairs programs - he did "The Full Ginsburg".

Derisively named after Monica Lewinsky's attorney William Ginsburg after he took on all 5 such shows in early 1998, the President- already criticized for being overexposed by some - went full tilt on Sunday, giving 15 minutes each to the networks, including CNN and Univision.

But not Fox.

Download the Mitch Perry report here.

Whether that it was appropriate or not can be debated.  Unlike their cable brethren, Chris Wallace & friends don't bring the rating numbers that George Stephanopoulous or David Gregory do on Sunday mornings. 

Scroll to read more News Feature articles
Join the Creative Loafing Tampa Bay Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state.
Help us keep this coverage going with a one-time donation or an ongoing membership pledge.


Join Creative Loafing Tampa Bay Newsletters

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Creative Loafing Tampa Bay. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Creative Loafing Tampa Bay, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at [email protected]