So the hostile press corps is all upset over the way Romney's traveling press secretary Rick Gorka verbally dressed down reporters. Here's a transcript of the exchange:
CNN: "Governor Romney are you concerned about some of the mishaps of your trip?
NYT: "Governor Romney do you have a statement for the Palestinians?
Washington Post: "What about your gaffes?
NYT: "Governor Romney do you feel that your gaffes have overshadowed your foreign trip?"
CNN: "Governor Romney just a few questions sir, you haven't taken but three questions on this trip from the press!
Gorka: "Show some respect"
NYT: "We haven't had another chance to ask a question..."
Gorka: "Kiss my ass. This is a Holy site for the Polish people. Show some respect."
Now, my current thoughts about my colleagues in the media are so negative that I find myself cheering on Gorka as he loses his cool.
But Byron York, always sensible and balanced, offers some words of wisdom:
Whatever else the Romney trip has been, it's fair to say the campaign has failed spectacularly when it comes to press management…
A campaign has to feed reporters information regularly & not give them opportunity to make the story about themselves, which they will do.
Folks: Hostile press can be managed, too. Romney's London-ready and Israeli-Palestinian GDP remarks were entirely defensible. Why not…
...go back & talk to reporters about them? You answer their questions, you'll get on-average better coverage, & they'll get tired of asking.
It's that second tweet that I think is key. If you don't feed reporters information, they'll make the story about themselves.
But I wonder if this is really a big deal. I don't think the media -- when they're writing these woe are we stories -- realize how hostility toward them is viewed. As Ben's post below reminds us, mismanagement of the media can doom campaigns and causes real damage. But is that what happened here?
I'm also reminded of something a Ricochet member said at our most recent meet-up -- something about how Romney was kind of boring in his niceness and should show some rougher edges. I know it's not Romney -- just an aide -- but it kind of transfers.
Also, it just makes that whole attempt to characterize Romney as a wimp look even sillier than it already did.
What do you think? Cause for concern here?