Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Analysis: President Obama - Bill O'Reilly Interview: Super Bowl Sunday 2010

Here is my analysis of an interested interview between Bill O'Reilly and President Barack Obama from February 2010 during the pregame show for the Superbowl. My comments are below the video.

Overall, I was impressed with the interview. Bill was a bit softer on Obama than he might have otherwise been (especially compared with this interview from 2008) but I thought that he asked just enough tough questions at the first to make the interview interesting. The one question that I wish he would have asked Obama but didn't was about the move by the Obama administration during the first two years of office away from the Bush era policy of challenging dictatorships and promoting democracy around the world. I felt that O'Reilly could have made the point that the U.S. could have been much more active in promoting change in Egypt and other places before 2010 than they ultimately ended up being.

The second part of the interview was refreshingly light. Too often, interviews with the president focus on the difficult political questions faced every day as a part of the job description and on not much else. While I'm not advocating throwing "soft ball" questions to politicians as a matter of course, sometimes it's nice to see the media call back the attack dogs a bit when dealing with these issues. I like that Bill gave Obama a chance to explain how hard the decisions are that he makes on a daily basis. As Obama notes, people have to have a thick skin to survive the election process and become president.

What do you think? Please leave your comments below. 
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