After months of what some critics called overexposure, President Obama has of late avoided questions from the White House press corps at large, closing the Oval Office to traditionally informal question-and -answer sessions with reporters and pulling back from the fast pace of news conferences he established when taking office.
The president, whose job-approval ratings have been on a steady slide, hasn’t held a formal news conference in 19 weeks, since July 22. That one ended badly, when Mr. Obama waded into a racial controversy by saying a white police officer “acted stupidly” when he arrested a black Harvard professor.
Advertisement – story continues below
“It can’t be a total coincidence that the last time he faced the press corps, we ended with beers in the Rose Garden with Henry Louis Gates and James Crowley, when the focus was supposed to be health care,” said Julie Mason, a White House reporter for the Washington Examiner who also covered the Bush administration for the Houston Chronicle.
Read More: By Joseph Curl, Washington Times