Biden had his first “press conference” in 108 days yesterday at the G20.
But it wasn’t exactly what you would call a normal press conference, which one normally associates with the press being able to ask a lot of questions.
First, he arrived late to the press conference, “playing with the elevators,” he said.
Then, as we mentioned, Biden did that thing where he reveals he’s being told what reporters to call on. He said, “Now, I’m told that I should start with AP, Zeke Miller.”
Joe Biden calls on reporter from pre-approved list: “I’m told I should start with AP, Zeke Miller" pic.twitter.com/n7K2QtBdnq
— RNC Research (@RNCResearch) October 31, 2021
Then, it was very limited in scope. According to James Hohmann of The Washington Post, Biden took questions from only five reporters.
At his news conference in Rome, President Biden took questions from five reporters: @ZekeJMiller, @jeffmason1, @jimtankersley, @SeungMinKim and @CeciliaVega.
— James Hohmann (@jameshohmann) October 31, 2021
Those are the AP, Reuters, New York Times, Washington Post, and ABC News, in that order. He did take three follow-up questions from the same reporters. But calling on five people isn’t much of a press conference at all. That’s more like he knew people were criticizing that he wasn’t having press conferences so he did the bare minimum that he could to say he had a press conference. Biden also kept apologizing to the reporters for not recognizing them behind their masks.
Once again it’s clear that working from a sheet of ‘approved’ reporters that he’s supposed to call on, prompting the question – who is telling him what to do?
Not to mention, while we didn’t get a good look at the cheat sheets this time, when we’ve seen them in the past, such as in March at his first press conference, the sheets had the face of the reporter and the outlet they are from. They also had numbers listed on them seemingly indicating when he should call on them. Three of the five people he called on yesterday were also part of his list that he had in March – Zeke Miller, Cecilia Vega, and Seung Min Kim.
If you think that this kind of thing doesn’t excite comment in the world, take a gander at this Sky News, Australia reporter at about 2:19 where they talk about it and his use of “cheat sheets” when it comes to the reporters.
During the G20 press conference, when he was asked about his low polls, Biden claimed it happens to everyone.
And, by the way, look, the polls are going to up and down and up and down. They were high early, then they got medium, then they went back up, and now they’re low.
Well, look, this is — look at every other president; the same thing has happened.
Once again, unable to take any responsibility for his own failings. No, it hasn’t happened to everybody. Indeed, as we noted, Gallup polling showed that Biden’s approval rating dropped from 56% in Q1 to 44.7% in Q3 which represents an 11.3% drop that has not been experienced by any president since World War II.
Also, the ABC reporter asked him about the comments Biden claimed the Pope made – that he was a good Catholic and he should keep receiving Communion. Biden clearly said that to quiet the complaints from the conservative bishops back in the U.S. who are righteously upset about his support of abortion. But we don’t actually know if the Pope said that to him in that way. So a reporter should ask about that. But here’s what this reporter asked, “For these Catholics back home, what did it mean for you to hear Pope Francis, in the wake of this — in the middle of this debate, call you a good Catholic? And did what he tell you — should that put this debate to rest?” Shameful lack of journalism there, sounds like she’s aiming for a job as a stenographer for the Biden team.
Biden’s response? Pure Biden. He didn’t actually answer it but he did ramble on talking about his son Beau’s death and saying that Pope Francis had comforted him what his son died.
Look, I’m — I’m not going to — a lot of this is just personal. Pope Francis has become a — I don’t want to exaggerate — has become a — someone who has provided great solace for my family when my son died.
So that sounds like he’s now trying to claim what was said was personal when he’s asked about it. But he’s the one who claimed what was said and now he doesn’t want to talk about it. That makes me doubt all the more that the Pope said that.