New York Times reported complains that Biden only speaks with 'friendly' interviewers

September 25, 2023

Conservatives have long accused The New York Times of favoring President Joe Biden, such as when it took nearly half a year to admit that his son's laptop contents weren't Russian disinformation.

Yet in a move that may be seen by the White House as a stab in the back, one of its reporters recently slammed Biden for only giving interviews to friendly outlets. 

Biden's reclusively a sharp contrast with Trump's eagerness to engage

According to Fox News, Times contributor Zolan Kanno-Youngs made the complaint while sitting on a panel discussion at the 2023 Texas Tribune Festival in Austin.

His remarks came as attendees were asked to compare former President Donald Trump's comparative eagerness to engage the media with his successor's reclusively.

Kannos-Youngs noted that the Biden administration makes a point of holding daily press briefings, something which did not happen under Trump.

However, he also stressed how the current White House has a "different measure" regarding transparency, as can be seen from the fact that Biden has thus far only given two print media interviews.

President prefers "friendly talk show hosts" to hard questions

"They pretty much made it clear that I don't think they - they see that they may be meeting that standard by putting the president up for interviews with, I would say, friendly talk show hosts and maybe getting their message out on social media," Kanno-Youngs said.

"Their kind of priority is going to get their message out for the agenda and to galvanize voters," the reporter explained.

"Our priority is going to be to ask them tough questions and hold them to account. And I think there's still value in putting a president up against a reporter from any of our outlets," he continued.

"And if you don't, you know, if you create a void of information, other people are going to fill it with their assumptions, which I think is factored in a bit into questions over whether this is actually a strategy, whether this is potentially protecting him away from reporters," Kanno-Youngs added.

None of Biden's recent interviews touched on uncomfortable topics

Fox News recalled how the president participated in a "a rare" live interview this past June with MSNBC host Nicole Wallace.

That was followed in July and August by pre-recorded interviews with CNN personality Fareed Zakaria and The Weather Channel.

Fox News characterized all three interviews as "friendly," with none of them featuring questions about topics the president might find uncomfortable.

That could be an implicit admission by the White House that Biden lacks the cognitive ability to stay on message or give impromptu answers.


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