By Randy Foreman, White House Correspondent
WASHINGTON – (Newsblaze) – In the White House Press corps there is a vocabulary unto itself that scribes in the West Wing utilize. Events are “Open Press” or “Closed Press.” Before you can go into the East Room, reporters have to make “Final Gather.” Smaller groups of reporters that get to go into more limited access events in the Oval Office or on Air Force One are organized into the “pool.”
One other term consistently makes it into your email box if you subscribe to the White House Press Office email list and that is “Readout.”
Readouts are a summary of what was said in calls or meetings to foreign leaders or even local officials by the President and Vice President. Constantly in White House Briefings the Spokesman Josh Earnest is referring to the Readouts. “I don’t have a readout” … etc. etc.
Well, at NewsBlaze it was no surprise to us on Wednesday, that when Democratic Presidential hopeful Senator Bernie Sanders had an Oval office meeting before the Daily Press Briefing, we were told that there was no readout of the meeting.
Of course when the Vermont Socialist stepped outside the West Wing after 45 minutes in the Oval with the President and addressed reporters, the readout he provided the media for their evening broadcasts was that the meeting was “even handed.”
“I think he and the vice president have tried to be fair and even-handed in the process, and I expect they will continue to do that,” Sen. Sanders said of the meeting with Obama and Biden.
Additionally, Sander continued smoothing the posterior of the President by saying “By and large, over the last seven years on major issue after major issue, I have stood by his side to where he has taken on unprecedented Republican obstructionism, has tried to do the right thing for the American people.”
The White House furthered that narrative of the Non-Readout Readout when the Daily Press Briefing got underway in saying that the meeting had not been long in the works and was not scheduled driven by polls.
“I think that the President did have the opportunity to talk in that interview about how important it is that somebody like Senator Sanders has succeeded in inspiring tens of thousands, if not hundreds of thousands, of Democrats all across the country to attend his campaign events, become engaged in his campaign, contribute to his campaign, and be a part of a broader effort to put another Democrat in the White House. That’s a really good thing for the party,” Josh Earnest said.
However, that explanation and 31 other mentions of Bernie Sanders at Wednesday’s Press Briefing doesn’t get anywhere close to the true readout of the meeting. But the answer does seem close to what our Associated Press White House colleague, Kathleen Hennessey said in the lead of her news analysis of the matter. “President Barack Obama and his aides have said a lot of nice things about Bernie Sanders, but not this one: He’s ready to be president.” [ USNews ]
People looking for some context to what happened in the middle of the week, might be able to look at this. In a bizarre Drudge Report Headlined Story from MSNBC Bernie Sanders the next day went on the attack saying that Microsoft could fix the results of the Iowa caucuses.
“The campaign of Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders is raising questions about the involvement of Microsoft in the Iowa Caucuses, now just days away, and has built an independent system to check the official results.” The Sanders camp went on to whine and moan about the fact that Hillary had received all sorts of Microsoft donations.
Sanders didn’t find much fortune in the final Des Moines Register poll before the caucuses which showed him trailing Hillary Clinton by three points. 45 to 42.
The unfortunate reality is the true readout of that meeting isn’t going to be known until the voters of the Hawkeye State make their voices heard next week. That meeting could be “Bernie, you will do what we tell you to do or else.” Or Bernie could have driven it home to the occupants of Casa Blanca. But the best readout of all is usually election returns.