The ultimate insider news publication is Politico, a how-to-guide to slavishly follow the political and media elites.
So I shouldn’t be surprised to read this story entitled, “How Obama plays media like a fiddle“. All hacks, want some Obama love? Follow these tips:
Respect the Village Elders
Most political reporters live in Washington. So it’s not really surprising that they tend to respect presidents who show respect for Washington culture, Washington rituals, and above all Washington operatives.
Early in his presidency Obama—like many of his predecessors when they first arrived—was seen as cool or even hostile to permanent Washington.
After the midterm defeats, it was an important part of his rehabilitation to be seen as having learned his lesson.
Among the stops in this process was consulting with eminent Washington worthies who are themselves veterans of White Houses past. Aides let it be known that Obama had huddled with Ken Duberstein, a lobbyist who was chief of staff under Ronald Reagan; John Podesta, who was chief of staff under Clinton and now runs the Center for American Progress; and Gergen himself, who doesn’t actually live in Washington but (so far) has served under four presidents (Nixon, Ford, Reagan, Clinton) and is the high priest of Washington bipartisanship.