White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs offered this assessment to the press corps today, in response to a question from Jake Tapper: “I think some of you were disappointed yesterday that the president didn’t get yelled at, sure. I don’t think there’s any doubt about that.”
Now, I suppose there are some television producers out there so addicted to dramatic visuals of political conflict that the decorum of a funeral sends them running to a methadone clinic. But I think most reporters on the White House beat would have preferred that the president get some tougher questions than the one he got from the 11-year-old about the “mean signs” outside.
Given most Americans’ instinctive respect for the office, if not any given occupant, is it really the White House reporters before Gibbs who were yearning for a presidential face-off with a wide-eyed, spittle-bursting John Bircher holding up a birth certificate in a plastic bag? Or is there a little projection going on?