Wednesday, February 06, 2008

When Obama Got a Tough Question in '06

Readers Note: Many of you will be interested in the post below: Sen. Obama Gets a Pointed Question. It was published June 29, 2006.


TV network interviewers know the unwritten rule: you don’t ask liberal Dems tough questions.

That’s why you never hear questions like: “How did it feel, Mr. Clinton, when the Supreme Court acted unanimously to disbar you and you had to turn in your license to practice before the court?”

Or: “If you feel so strongly about the environment, Sen. Kerry, why do you own five large homes and three SUVs?”

But recently, Good Morning America’s Robin Roberts either forgot or just ingored the rule.

Blogger Mark Finkelstein at Newsbusters tells us about it:

In introducing [Sen. Barack] Obama, GMA's Robin Roberts did describe him as "one of the Democrats' rising stars." But I think that might be some kind of required FCC label, so we'll cut Robin slack. Particularly so in light of the very probing question with which she ultimately hit Obama, and the telling response she elicited.

The topic was the Dems' uneasy relationship with religion and religious voters, and the speech Obama gave yesterday exhorting Democrats to "compete for the support of evangelicals and other churchgoing Americans."

Frankly, I expected Roberts to accord kid-MSM glove treatment to Obama. But after some nice chit chat, she landed this blow:

"We saw, of course, in the last presidential election moral values very much on the minds of voters who went to the polls. But it's also, when evangelicals talk about the way Democrats traditionally vote, when it comes to gay rights and abortion. So it's not so much the family values that you talk about, but about how Democrats vote. Does there have to be a change there?"


Obama: "There are going to be differences and issues and not all these issues that touch on religious faith are easily resolved. I mean, the fact of the matter is that there are going to be contentious debates around abortion and gay marriage and that's part of our democratic process. My simple point is to make sure that we don't get so locked into a particular perception about how one party or the other thinks that we miss the enormous complexity and diversity of religious views across the country."

Translation: "When it comes to social issues, we Democrats are going to keep voting like the liberals we are. But we have to figure out a way to change the religious voters' perception of what we're up to." ( Finkelstein’s bolds and italics)
If there were more questions like the one Roberts asked, those network ratings might go up.

Of course, it would also be a lot harder to get the lib Dems to come on the shows.

Thanks, Mark, for a good catch.
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Anonymous said...

I'm not sure religious ideals are so easly construed. The Catholic church believes that no birth control methods should ever be used, but many Catholics still in good conscience practice family planning (abortion not implied). I don't think these individuals break from the church position makes them "bad" catholics, or not religious. People can be both religious and believe that the gay/lesbian members of our society should have the protection of marriage and that a woman has the right to control her own body (which is not the same as being pro-abortion, but is instead leaving the decision to the woman instead of the government). If we are talking about pro-life, shouldn't we be against the death penalty? Many evangelical voters do not oppose the death penalty, and yet Christ tells us "he who has no sin should cast the first stone", an instruction to leave such severe judgments up to a higher power.