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Blogger makes White House debut

Blogger makes White House debut

On Monday the White House allowed Garrett Graff, editor of FishbowlDC, to attend its regular press briefing - the first recognised Internet diarist given a pass. Here is an extract from his blog of the day: "We'd been warned by a regular White House correspondent over the weekend that the 'zoo' of the briefing would likely leave us knowing less and being more confused than when went in. Having sat through it now, we have to agree. Watching it on television doesn't quite do justice to the uselessness of many of the exchanges back and forth, nor the intensity of [press secretary] Scott McClellan's withering gaze, nor the frustration boiling up in the reporters' voices as they butt their heads up against a rhetoric wall. CBS' John Roberts got into a little tiff with McClellan about private accounts and social security, where Roberts kept trying to get McClellan to answer a yes-no question with either a 'yes' or a 'no'. The exchange finished with McClellan saying in a gentle snap, 'don't know what part you're not hearing,' and Roberts saying, 'It's the N-O portion I'm not hearing.' All of this, mind you, is conducted with Marine One's rotors thumping just a few hundred feet away, until it took off right about on schedule at 1.30pm. At 1.37pm, Scott McClellan abruptly says 'thanks' and leaves the podium. (For the record, we didn't ask a question, although we had one ready about the comments last week by FEC commissioner Bradley Smith regarding regulating political activity on the Internet.) As McClellan walked out, one reporter turned to his colleagues: 'Why do they have to send terror suspects to Uzbekistan to be tortured? Just make them sit here and after a few hours of a briefing, they'll be begging to talk.' We tend to agree." Related link - FishbowlDC UKFast is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites.

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