As I reported this afternoon, Joe Biden blew up at a CNN reporter today, insulting Kaitlan Collins multiple times after she asked him a basic question about expectations and Vladimir Putin. While Biden’s shows of senility and outbursts aren’t exactly new, that he was unable to control himself in this situation was still surprising.
The real question, though, was how the media would react. They had already been mistreated, by their own claim, earlier that day. Would they go after Biden the way they went after Trump for every perceived slight? In my original write-up, I had this to say about how I thought the media would handle Biden’s meltdown.
Now, he’s yelling at friendly media outlets like he’s off his meds, probably because he’s actually off his meds. Will they go hard at him for this attack on freedom of the press? Will Brian Stelter, whose beat is supposedly covering the media, condemn this vicious assault of one of his network’s own reporters?
I think we know the answer to that. The media, like they always do, will fall in line. Perhaps we’ll get a couple of meek denouncements, but it’ll stop there and they’ll be back to licking his boots in no time.
Admittedly, me being proven right on that point was just a formality, but the sheer pace at which the media turned this matter on its head is just an incredible thing to witness. Within 30 minutes, Wolf Blitzer was on CNN praising the president.
Wolf Blitzer glowing after Biden apologizes to reporters about his response to CNN’s Kaitlan Collins
"Can you imagine the former president ever doing anything along those lines?”
— Charlie Spiering (@charliespiering) June 16, 2021
Blitzer literally works for the network that Collins works for. Yet, instead of going hard after Biden for his complete breach of decorum and decency in insulting and yelling at his network’s own reporter, he went straight to lauding the president for his supposed apology.
Today felt like a special moment in media bias history. We literally had the president verbally insult and berate a female reporter and within 30 minutes…that reporter's own network was praising Biden's demeanor while she was made to accept his apology on air. Incredible.
— Bonchie (@bonchieredstate) June 16, 2021
Then there’s this eye-rolling moment from Jake Sherman of NBC News.
Biden just now to reporters: You’re the brightest people in the country.
Trump didn’t say that.
— Jake Sherman (@JakeSherman) June 16, 2021
Well, for starters, that’s just false. Journalists are clearly not the brightest people in the country, and there’s something grossly manipulative about a president saying that to people who are supposed to be covering him objectively. But what’s worse is that these reporters lap it up. Besides, how is that the takeaway from today given Biden’s behavior? Shouldn’t Sherman be leading with what Biden did instead of just looking for ways to praise him? Heck, even during his “apology,” Biden doubled down, whining that the press doesn’t ask him “positive” questions. In reality, we have examples of the press asking him what kind of ice cream he likes.
Glenn Greenwald had the perfect response to this creepy hero-worship.
The Leader, even though he sometimes loses his patience to outbursts of misogynistic rage, loves you and is proud of you. https://t.co/wU1thNsJeE
— Glenn Greenwald (@ggreenwald) June 16, 2021
Meanwhile, did CNN’s media reporter have anything to say about this? Remember, this is the same guy who would be on Twitter within two minutes if this had been Trump.
Nah, he just retweeted this, which actually praises Biden for being respectful to the press, something he’s clearly not.
That tends to be the case when you never have press conferences. pic.twitter.com/XE02AHb9Rw
— Chief Impact Officer BT (@back_ttys) June 16, 2021
It really is nuts. Collins, who did nothing wrong here, ended up accepting an apology on-air while her colleagues take Biden’s side. She’ll never admit it, but that can’t feel very good. The bond between the press and Biden is just too strong, and it can’t be broken.
At least we all get a good laugh along the way, I guess.