White House CoS Rahm Emanuel [expletive deleted] up again.

[UPDATE]: Welcome, Instapundit readers.

(H/T: Hot Air Headlines) Today’s entry has as its theme How to succeed in insulting the press corps without really trying.

For reporters covering President Obama, there’s only one party in town that matters: The White House Holiday Party. It’s a rare opportunity to walk around parts of the White House and meet the president and first lady. In the past, the highlight of the event has been the chance to get your picture taken with the president in the receiving line.

This year, however, the White House seems to be doing things a little differently. The invites went out late – and didn’t include journalists who have been invited in the past. And those who have been invited seem likely to be denied the traditional receiving-line photo.

There’s a lot of good schadenfreude in the Politico article, if you’re the sort to mock the press corps for this – which I’m actually not inclined to do, in fact.  The reason why I’m not is because of this sentence:

“It’s always been a big deal,” said [Dee Dee] Myers, who served as press secretary to former President Bill Clinton. “It’s exhausting [for the president] but it’s the one time when reporters feel like they’re treated like human beings and not just some guy behind the rope line. It’s the one time they can actually say hello.”

Maybe it’s just because Christmas is coming up, but I’m sympathetic to people finding out that a traditional perk of their not-entirely-pleasant jobs – and most of the folks reading this would like to have a photo of them meeting a President of the United States – has gone away because it’s inconvenient for the current President and his staff.  Which latter, as the Politico article later reports, has thrown together the entire holiday party in its typical slapdash fashion.  Informal invitations via email, seriously late formal invitations, rushed RSVP schedule, making the news organizations themselves decide who gets to go… it’s all there, and it’s yet another example of why there’s a White House Chief of Staff in the first place.

Say what you like about Barack Obama the man, as President he’s entitled to better personal service than he’s getting from Rahm Emanuel.  It reflects badly on the entire country when these events don’t go smoothly, and if people who try to tell you otherwise, ask yourself this: would you attend one of their parties?

Moe Lane

Crossposted to RedState.


  • cycleSc says:

    This is part of the overall trend. The current admin takes allies for granted – as if they will always accept poor treatment: Eastern Europe, UK, now the press corp. Rahm knows the press won’t really turn on them when the chips are down, so why work at keeping them friendly?

  • Gerry says:

    Frankly, the West Wing is so screwed up in this clown car adminsitration that even I migth succeed in getting an invitation, and I’m nobody. Which means, of course, that I wouldn’t want to go to a White House that would want me as a guest (apologies to Groucho Marx).

  • Roux says:

    Reminds me of the incompetent Jimmy Carter.

  • Roger Byrne says:

    Is this not the same patterna s the stimulus? health care? cap and trade? and now the left over funds for TARP? In the end these people may be smart but tey are not serious judging by their actions….Oh yeah and how far behind is the Adiminstration in nominating judges too?

  • novaculus says:

    The Obama crew can’t organize holiday parties efficiently. They manage to offend the very people they are supposed to be entertaining by denying them a traditional perk. Apparently these problems are a result of an imperious president who can’t be bothered with his traditional duties and a staff of incompetents.

    And yet these same people are responsible for running the country? We are in for more problems before we can rid ourselves of this ship of fools in 2012.

    And just for the record Moe, if I had the opportunity to have my picture taken with THIS president, I would decline. I’m quite certain I could find something more constructive to do with my time.

  • Martin L. Shoemaker says:

    I wouldn’t have thought it possible, but President Obama has found a way to alienate his base. (“His base” meaning the media, of course.)

  • Insufficiently Sensitive says:

    Rahm’s just too busy hijacking powers from Congress for the authoritarian White House to exercise. It’s a major priority in this administration (well, payoffs for Democratic constituencies is another), and Christmas parties come third. Rahm’s no delegater, either.

  • George Ditter says:

    It reminds you of the stories from last December about how well the transition was going (without the stories noting that the Bush people were handling the transition) followed by the clumsy stuff in January and February after the current team took over

  • Thea says:

    I think the event IS going smoothly. I think Obama and his wife don’t want to do the lines because, yes, they’re exhausting and you also have to at least PRETEND that you want to meet-and-greet these people; you have to act like you want to be there. I don’t think Obama and his wife want to do it, and so it won’t be done. I believe they feel they don’t owe anyone, anything. They owe the press their victory, but they don’t have to payback for it, because the thing is done, now, and where is the press going to go, anyway? To Palin? Hah! The Obama Administration is arrogant because they know they can be. They know what so many are slow to figure out. The coup has been accomplished; they don’t have to gladhand because they’ll be in power for a good long time. Bush was the Last American President. This is our first dictator.

  • Paul A'Barge says:

    Regarding the peanut gallery from the Lamestream Media, let me not be the last to say about them not getting one of their prized perks: Screw ’em.

    Wait. That’s what Kos said about Americans who were on the job working against terrorism whose bodies were mutilated and hung from the framework of a bridge.

    No. I stand by my original comment. Screw ’em.

  • Peg C. says:

    I wouldn’t attend as long as this bunch is in office. I would never want a pic with them!

  • GaryS says:

    Seems to me that the key issue is that the receiving line is WORK. It should be obvious by now to anyone paying attention that Obama is just plain LAZY.

    Besides, it’s beneath the dignity of The One to actually touch the flesh of so many Little People.

  • ic says:

    It’s a punishment for their not singing his praises sufficiently, and for not closing down their Gridiron Dinner when he refused to attend.

  • Some Guy says:

    It’s not incompetence, they just learned from Clinton’s mistakes and are avoiding having their pictures taken with Democratic Party fundraiser who often turn out to be crooks.

  • mark l. says:

    I challenge a lib to find one single act of “humility” committed by this wh.

    I’m sure the counter argument would be that the bush admin refused to admit “any” of their mistakes, yet there countless moments of self deprecating humor committed by w.

    So which came first? were they just this arrogant and proud to this degree before taking the wh, or have they been driven into a bunker, to pout, privately?

    it is strange that a president, who desires to demonstrate he is no better than anyone else, employs a cadre of thin skinned spokespeople. most americans have a rather thick hide of misteps and failures which removes most of the veneer of pride, yet the current regime is so far removed from the personality of the people they represent, that they are becoming increasingly socially awkward.

  • Shanna says:

    “Informal invitations via email, seriously late formal invitations”

    What did they send an EVITE? Good Lord, how tacky are these people?

    I’m sure that receiving line is a lot of work, but I attended a holiday party under President Bush and he and Laura both were very gracious and took official pictures with everyone. The food was good and liquor was free, too 🙂 This is sheer selfishness on the part of Obama. They don’t want to do anything for the pleasure of other people.

  • mac says:

    Bama and his wife are classless clowns, like most Democrats. They know they’re in way over their heads, and that most people despise them. Consequently, they make it a point to be “in-your-face” and to show their disdain for everyone else. The stupid fools who elected this lot are now seeing what those of us with more wisdom saw long ago. That’s why his popularity numbers are in free fall.

    Bama is the most incompetent individual to occupy the WH since James Buchanan. I’ve long thought that by the time he left he would be the most hated President in American history. If he follows his current trajectory, that’s exactly what he’ll be, and I don’t see him being smart enough to change. After all, if he was really as bright as his supporters painted him, why wouldn’t he release his academic records? People proud of their academic achievements don’t hide them; people ashamed of them do.

    52%, you elected a real loser. Pity that 100% of us have to suffer the consequences.

  • Jim C. says:

    “Maybe it’s just because Christmas is coming up, but I’m sympathetic to people finding out that a traditional perk of their not-entirely-pleasant jobs – and most of the folks reading this would like to have a photo of them meeting a President of the United States – has gone away”

    Of course we all would like it. Why should reporters get this perk? And “not entirely pleasant”? Too bad for them. Reporters on that beat are very well paid and they’re respected by their companies and their peers.

    Dee Dee Myers said, “it’s the one time when reporters feel like they’re treated like human beings and not just some guy behind the rope line.”

    In other words, now Obama is putting them in their place.

    To the reporters: boo-freakin’-hoo. Stop whining. If you don’t like the work, get another job. There are long lines of qualified people who would love to have it.

  • SenatorMark4 says:

    This really is a puzzling thing. You’d think that the Prez and Ms. would want to get their picture taken with people that have jobs and no criminal convictions. Raises the ratio.

  • Stephen says:

    Emanuel may be guilty of alot,but on the WH Christmas Party he should get a pass.
    Can’t recall her name,but a female best bud of Michelle’s is responsible for the Christmas Party.

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