I began my column yesterday with an item on President Obama: his occasional peevishness, his descents into dislikability. I say that this side of O will be a boon to Republicans in 2012. An irritable, disdainful Obama will be easier to beat than a gracious, all-embracing one (One?).
In that column, I used the word “snippy,” which leads to a walk down Memory Lane, if you don’t mind. Do you remember Election Night 2000? Sure you do. A doozy. Al Gore calls George W. Bush to concede. But then he places another call. The Texas governor says to him, “You mean to tell me, Mr. Vice President, you’re retracting your concession?” Gore says, “You don’t have to be snippy about it.”
Oh, man, Bush could be snippy — true. But our current president is no slouch of a snipster himself. Did you see or read about his exchange with Brad Watson, a TV reporter from Texas? Go here. Now, from what I can tell, Watson wasn’t disrespectful. But he was reporter-like. And Obama isn’t used to that. He is used to quite gingerly treatment from the press. Remember when that anchorman executed a little bow to him?
After Brad Watson had his allotted seven minutes, Obama said to him, smoke practically exiting his ears, “Let me finish my answers the next time we do an interview, all right?” Given the treatment that O has received from the press, I have trouble blaming him for being sensitive, or snippy, when someone acts like a normal reporter around him.
Remember when a New York Timesman, at a formal press conference, asked him what had “enchanted” him the most about the presidency? (Well, that was the kind of question that the Bushes and Reagan always got from the Big Media. Right?)
P.S. No one likes conservative whining about media bias. But may I say — for the thousandth time — that we don’t much like the bias, either?