Grabien reports: President Obama began his final press conference on a surprising note. Despite “not liking all of the stories you’ve filed,” he told the gathered White House press corps that it’s you’re duty to ask “tough questions” and not be “sycophants.”
Too bad reporters were apparently not paying attention.
What followed was one softball after another, with rhetorical foot massages sandwiched between.
“Thank you, Mr. President,” each reporter began.
“It’s been an honor,” said another, before literally making the “call me” expression while pointing at her cellphone.
A reporter for The Blade, Chris Johnson, used his opportunity to ask the president a question to instead list a series of LGBT “accomplishments” Obama enjoyed during his tenure — before setting the president up to attack Trump.
“On LGBT rights, we have seen a lot of achievements over the past 8 years, including signing hate crime protection legislation, ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’ repeal, marriage equality nationwide and ensuring transgender people feel visible and respected,” Johnson began. “How do you think LGBT rights will rank in terms of your accomplishments and your legacy? And how confident are you that Congress will endure or continue under the president-elect?”
“Are you fearful for the status of those DREAMers” under Trump, another reporter asked suggestively.
“Under your watch, people have said, you have expanded the rubber band of inclusion,” another reporter began. “And with the election and the incoming administration, people are saying, the rubber band has recoiled and maybe even is broken. And I’m thinking back to a time on Air Force One going to Selma, Ala., when you said your job was to close the gaps the remain.”
“What gaps still remain?” she asked. “And also, what part will you play in fixing those gaps in your new life?”
With questions like these, it’s no wonder Obama doesn’t want to stray too far from Washington.