NBC and CBS Find Real White House Scandal: Obama's Red Sox Selfie May Have Been Staged
After eagerly promoting President Obama's selfie with Red Sox player David Ortiz on Wednesday, Thursday's NBC's Today and CBS This Morning
expressed their dismay that Ortiz may have staged the seemingly
spontaneous cell phone picture to promote his sponsor Samsung. [Listen to the audio]
On Today, co-host Savannah Guthrie lamented: "Okay, so turns out that wasn't as spontaneous as it looks. The selfie was captured with a Samsung phone and it turns out, mm-hm, you guessed it, David Ortiz has an endorsement deal with Samsung....I think it's kind of ridiculous that it's a product placement. And also because I thought it was a really cute moment, so I guess I'm kind of disappointed."
social media anchor Tamron Hall tried to buoy Guthrie's spirits: "But
was it a product [placement]? He says he wasn't paid for it....And you
can't see the brand of the phone. We only know the brand after the whole
Guthrie cheered up: "Alright, I'm coming around. So we can still love that moment and think it's sweet and innocent?"
On This Morning, White House correspondent Bill Plante reported: "...it turned out that the selfie was an orchestrated stunt. The White House says the President had no idea when he posed for what seemed like a spontaneous snap, that it was part of a promotion deal by Samsung, the manufacturer of the phone."
Moments later, he somberly added: "Well, the White House is not happy about this, but they're not making any public requests to take down those tweets. They don't want to appear heavy-handed."
Like Guthrie, co-host Gayle King voiced her disappointment: "Big Papi [David Ortiz] let me down. He doesn't know me, I like him, but I just think, ahhhhh....it does bother me."
Co-host Norah O'Donnell concluded: "It's a question about whether it's respectful to the President to be promotional with the President of the United States."
CBS had no problem being "promotional" of President Obama when it thought the photo-op was genuine. On Wednesday's This Morning, co-host Charlie Rose touted:
The Boston Globe says the Red Sox visited the White House Tuesday. The World Series champions met President Obama. They presented the forty-fourth commander-in-chief with the number forty-four jersey.
Slugger David Ortiz took a picture with the President, he then tweeted, quote, "What an honor! Thanks for the #selfie, @BarackObama."
NBC's Today devoted an entire segment on Wednesday to how the selfie created a "good day Washington."
And all three networks happily cheered the President's recent joke interview with comedian Zach Galifianikis to push ObamaCare, while ignoring problems with the law.
— Kyle Drennen is Senior News Analyst at the Media Research Center. Follow Kyle Drennen on Twitter.