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Now that Obama's won, Fox News can't seem to catch his eye

November 28, 2008 |  7:06 am

Back in October then-Sen. Barack Obama granted a then-rare campaign interview. That time, not surprisingly, it went to the N.Y. Times Magazine and the candidate reportedly whined to the writer:

"I am convinced that if there were no Fox News, I might be two or three points higher in the polls. If I were watching Fox News, I wouldn't vote for me, right?

Fox News runs with the other news orgs

"Because the way I'm portrayed 24/7 is as a freak! I am the latte-sipping, New York Times-reading, Volvo-driving, no-gun-owning, effete, politically correct, arrogant liberal. Who wants somebody like that?"

It's not unusual for public figures to feel misportrayed or even abused by media organizations. John McCain and his people expressed some strong concerns several times about the same Times newspaper.

Now that the campaign is over and Obama is president-elect, his reticence to talk with the media is gone. Now, he's eager to spread the impression of abundant pre-oath energy and activity.

So, he's held four news conferences and two sit-down TV interviews since election day, including three news conferences three days in a row this week. He's broken the news conference record for all recent presidents-elect.

At these news sessions since Nov. 4, the future commander in chief has answered a total of 22 questions from different reporters. Wednesday, it was NPR, the N.Y. Daily News and CNN.

But not once has the election victor called on a representative of Fox News. He just hasn't seemed to spot them waving their hand for recognition.

Fox News is widely viewed among Democrats as a Republican news organization, although it might be hard to convince George W. Bush of that after Fox's 2000 DUI story that cost his campaign Maine (and allowed Florida's disputed vote-counting to matter).

Or to convince Sarah Palin that Fox is GOP-flavored, even if she knew she was in Africa when you told her.

It appears to be an Obama coincidence, like Texan conservative George W. Bush not finding room for a liberal N.Y. Times interview in his impossible presidential schedule for the last nine years.

Long-term vindictiveness is not a viable political communications strategy for those who've won elections. As Bush's exit era sub-basement approval ratings might suggest. But officeholders must learn that lesson for themselves.

Or not.

-- Andrew Malcolm

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