She began by asking, "What is your biggest fear?" That's a blank canvas for a politician to paint any way he or she likes.
Walters explicitly compared the Obamas to the Camelot swoon over Jack and Jackie Kennedy, and their "youthful embodiment of style, substance and hope." Much of the hour was devoted to softballs. How would the Obamas spend Thanksgiving? How about the search for a new family dog? How will it be watching their grade-school-age girls grow up in the White House? The toughest question on the home front was the Obamas' choice of a private school. Walters simply declared, "Tell us why private school for the girls, and not public school." She could have asked it this way, too: "Tell us why a black child in southeast D.C doesn't have the choice of a fancy private school like your privileged daughters because you oppose vouchers."
The sugary sweetness never seemed to end. Walters also reprised her free advertising copy on the Obamas in a preview on "World News" in the dinner hour -- they were again described as very candid and very funny. A half-hour after the Obama special ended, "Nightline" reran clips, and Walters dragged out the megaphone of praise yet again: "When you see him with his wife Michelle, he is so relaxed, he is funny. I have rarely seen a couple as devoted, as together, whether they're talking about their children or the kind of dog they're going to get ... They tease each other, but the respect that they have for each other is enormous."
All in all, it was one long day of ABC News shamelessly kissing rings. Like so many interviewers, Walters was not trying to build a factual record. She was trying to create a grand and glorious Obamalot myth, incessantly urging the public to buy her super-smart-cute-and-funny couple as the best choice history could have mustered.
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