President Obama has largely stayed away from talking to newspapers in the past few years, a new Washington Post study found.
The Post's Paul Farhi wrote on Sunday that, although Obama often takes to TV to get his message out, he has mostly avoided newspapers of all stripes.
As Farhi noted:
The Washington Post landed its last on-the-record meeting with the president nearly four years ago, as did the Wall Street Journal; the New York Times last got to him in the fall of 2010. The Boston Globe has never had an interview while Obama was in office, nor has the Los Angeles Times, according to the Nexis database and the newspapers. Even Obama's hometown papers, the Chicago Tribune and Chicago Sun-Times, have been stiffed.
What's more, despite a string of interviews with ethnic broadcasters, including Telemundo and Univision recently, Obama has never consented to an interview with any member of the National Newspaper Publishers Association, an organization consisting of 210 African-American-owned newspapers, said Robert W. Bogle, the organization's former president. Obama and George W. Bush were the first presidents who haven't done so since Franklin Roosevelt, notes Bogle, the chief executive of the Philadelphia Tribune.
There could be many reasons for Obama's reluctance. Newspapers simply do not play the role they once did in the media ecosystem, and, broadly speaking, they carry no special demographic or political appeal for the president. Yet others in the media might say to their print brethren, "Join the club."
Obama ended his first term after giving the fewest press conferences of any president since Ronald Reagan. During his re-election campaign, his shunning of the national media in favor of local outlets and -- most scandalously -- fluffy venues like People and "The View" caused much harrumphing. He also avoided the Sunday talk shows for nearly the entirety of his first term.