9/13/14, "Obama Met Privately With Top Journalists Before ISIS War Speech," Huffington Post, Michael Calderone
"President Barack Obama met with over a dozen prominent columnists and
magazine writers Wednesday afternoon before calling for an escalation of
the war against the Islamic State, or ISIS, in a primetime address that
The group, which met in the Roosevelt Room of the
White House in an off-the-record session, included
New York Times
columnists David Brooks, Tom Friedman and Frank Bruni and editorial
writer Carol Giacomo;
The Washington Post's David Ignatius, Eugene
Robinson and Ruth Marcus;
The New Yorker's Dexter Filkins and George
The Atlantic's Jeffrey Goldberg and Peter Beinart;
Republic's Julia Ioffe;
Columbia Journalism School Dean Steve Coll;
Wall Street Journal's Jerry Seib; and
The Daily Beast's Michael Tomasky,
a source familiar with the meeting told The Huffington Post.
Security Advisor Susan Rice, Deputy National Security Advisor Ben
Rhodes and White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough also attended the
meeting, according to the source.
The White House declined comment.
Peter Baker, the chief White House correspondent for The New York Times, reported on Saturday that Obama had met with columnists and magazine writers but did not name the attendees.
wrote that three New York Times columnists and one editorial writer
attended, but indicated they weren't sources for his story. Since the
meeting was off the record, the Times columnists could not report what
Obama said. But Baker, a Times reporter not in attendance, was under no
obligation to withhold the fact that the meeting took place.
Obama has long derided the 24-hour news cycle in which minor misstatements can become fodder for endless cable discussions. But throughout his presidency,
he has used smaller, private meetings with influential columnists and
commentators as a way to explain his positions before rolling out major
foreign and domestic policy decisions.
A year ago, Obama met with the New York Times editorial board and three columnists while considering whether to launch airstrikes against President Bashar Assad’s regime in Syria.
decision to escalate the war Wednesday followed several weeks of calls
by politicians and pundits for him to expand the air campaign against
the Islamic State, even as the intelligence community and terrorism
experts said the militant group poses no imminent threat to the United States." via PamelaGeller.com
3/8/2009, "How Obama plays the pundits," Politico, Michael Calderone
"Andrew Rosenthal, The (NY) Times’ editorial page editor, says the Obama
White House has been more “proactive” than the Bush White House was,
offering up policy thinkers to more fully explain the administration’s
positions — both before and after columns and editorials run.
“I’ve had more unsolicited offers for participation from the Obama
people in 45 days than in the last eight years from Bush,” said