Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Are Stupid Questions Allowable In the Whitehouse Press Briefing?

Press briefings are always interesting. You never know if some Whitehouse Beat Reporter has a hidden (well, somewhat hidden) agenda when posing particular questions. Monday was no different.

Sometimes there are good questions, some times not. Here we have perfectly foolish question that Tony the Snow job pastes with the usual veneer.

If I were voting, I'd put this question at the top of the useless question list. Of course, you may think differently.
Q I guess the challenge would be who besides the President thinks that the war is winnable at this stage?

MR. SNOW: I think millions of Americans believe that this war is winnable, and I think, furthermore, that it's important to rebuild the sense of political unity. One of the things the President has often said is, the only way we lose if we lose our will. And it is clear that there have been political debates in this country.

And it's also interesting because, again, I've heard a lot of Democrats saying, we want to succeed in Iraq. And, therefore, the question for them is, that's great, we agree, so let's find out what your ideas are, if you think you've got a different or a better idea; let's find out how you'll support the military in this endeavor. That's worth doing. And, frankly, done the right way will reassure the American people that all of Washington is serious about doing the right thing and doing it in the right way. And so we've got an opportunity here I think of getting thoughtful debate.
Further into Monday's press briefing, we actual find a decent question. In the answer we see obviated one more time which way the W, Rove and Co leans when interpreting political events: to their benefit.

Can it always be that a political turn of events, no matter the outcome, works in your favor? Have a look:
Q The President, obviously, though, did not read what happened November 7th as a mandate to start bringing troops home.

MR. SNOW: The President believes that -- if you take a look, Jim, at the elections, you can read any number of messages -- I mean, when people were asked in exit interviews what was their top concern, Iraq was number four, corruption was number one. And guess what? You had 10 members of the Republican caucus who had problems, and they all lost. So you can read a lot of results. There is an understandable -- people don't want to be at war; we don't want to be at war, the President doesn't want to be at war. But the fact is you've got a situation where terrorists and a terror network is determined to try to do whatever it can to destabilize this country and other parts of the world --

Q But the President is comfortable, then, with saying to the American people, I saw what happened November 7th -- actually, you're upset about corruption?

MR. SNOW: No, I think, Jim, people would be a lot less upset if he didn't take seriously his obligations as Commander-in-Chief.

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