On Tuesday, President Joe Biden gave remarks about the ongoing effort to withdraw U.S. troops from Afghanistan. Many pointed to the similarities between his latest address and the speech he gave the week prior. But these two briefings have something notable in common: They both ended with President Biden exiting the room without taking a single question from reporters.
One would think it strange that the commander-in-chief of the U.S. military would refuse to field questions about the end of the longest war that America has ever fought. But given his history, this is nothing new. Indeed, this president has been avoiding the press like the plague, and they are starting to notice.
Even CNN chimed in, noting that the interview Biden gave to ABC’s George Stephanopoulos “was only the 9th one Biden has done with a media organization since being sworn in as president seven months ago.”
The piece also points out that by this time in their presidencies, Barack Obama had given 133 interviews, and Donald Trump had given 50.
Some in the Fourth Estate have seemed frustrated with the cat and mouse game the president is playing. But overall, they have not taken him to task over his constant ducking of the media. The most criticism he has received for his distant relationship with the media happened when the migrant crisis first began.
Several news outlets published reports slamming him for refusing to allow reporters into detention facilities housing migrants and unaccompanied minors. Of course, we now know what he was trying to hide – especially when it concerns children. But other than this, the media seems content to let him ride.
The question is: How long will they allow this president to avoid them before they speak up?
Given that the activist media has a cozy relationship with Biden – just as they do with every Democratic president – the possibility that they will never hold him accountable is plausible. Since even before he took office, the press has been defending the president like a mama bear protects her cubs.
Still, there are indications that the press might eventually lose their patience with only being able to speak with White House press secretary Jen Psaki. The fiasco happening in Kabul right now has prompted many in the chattering class to turn on Biden. There have been numerous reports critical of the president for his mishandling of the evacuation efforts and failure to foresee a resurgent Taliban retaking the country.
Yes, there have been some media activists who have attempted to fulfill their duty as members of the Democrats’ Ministry of Propaganda. Still, for the most part, most are not hesitating to point out the myriad of ways the president has failed in this effort. The fact that Biden continues avoiding the press while presiding over a situation that is turning out to be worse than Saigon isn’t going to sit right with media activists who wish to hear from him.
This isn’t to say that the press will ever turn on Biden completely – they have an agenda to push, don’t they? However, the establishment press is showing that it’s willing to spank Biden when it becomes impossible to spin his ineptitude into something resembling competence.
At some point, they will become weary of dealing with an administration that is less transparent than that of the Orange Man who is bad. Biden’s team will have to do what they dread most: Put him in front of reporters to answer questions. Indeed, beads of sweat are likely forming on the brows of his handlers whose stomachs turn at the thought of having to spin yet another gaffe or display of cognitive decline.
With the situation in Kabul worsening by the day, it is clear that this issue is not going to blow over anytime soon. After the August 31 deadline passes, the world will be focused on what happens in Afghanistan next. If the situation continues to deteriorate – and every indication suggests that it will – Biden’s silence on the matter won’t be enough to satiate the press, and it certainly won’t help his plummeting approval ratings.