The Power of the Press (Secretary):

This report is stunning:

[D]uring President Obama's trip to India, Gibbs assumed the role of press advocate and threatened to pull Obama out of bilateral talks with Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh because three U.S. reporters were blocked from covering the meeting.
It's nice that Gibbs has the interest of the American press at heart, but -- did I understand that the press secretary was going to pull the US President out of bilateral talks? Gibbs said he was "serious" about this threat.

Normally that would seem to be overstepping one's authority a little bit. The idea that a press secretary might have veto power over whether the President is allowed to attend negotiations with another head of government... that's alarming. I know they work closely together, but still! The President might value his advisor's opinion without the advisor having that kind of authority over him. Gibbs seems confident, though: he didn't say he would ask the President to pull out of the negotiations, but that he would pull him out.

No comments: