--MSNBC political analyst Mark Halperin acknowledged this weekend on the "Today" show that the Beltway press corps is helping Obama drive campaign issues that most voters don't care about: "I think the press still likes this story a lot. The media is very susceptible to doing what the Obama campaign wants, which is to focus on (Mitt Romney's tax returns). ... Do voters care about it? I don't think so. ... I think it's mostly something that the press and insiders care about."
--Another MSNBC political reporter, Chuck Todd, disclosed that gaffetastic Vice President Joe Biden's staff was trying to edit the press pool reports to cover for the second-in-command's lack of rhetorical command. "This is an outrage that they do this," Todd said.
--Independent political blogger Keith Koffler of whitehousedossier.com reported this week that Team Obama was dictating interview topics to local TV reporters in battleground states, just after holding a kabuki press conference on Monday to capitalize on the Missouri GOP Rep. Todd Akin "legitimate rape"/magical uterus debacle. "In interviews with three local TV stations Monday, two from states critical to Obama's reelection effort, Obama held forth on the possibility of 'sequestration' if he and Congress fail to reach a budget deal, allowing him to make his favorite political point that Republicans are willing to cause grievous harm to the economy and jobs in order to protect the rich from tax increases," Koffler reported.
"The reporters mostly made no effort to hide the arrangement. 'The president invited me to talk about sequestration,' NBC 7 San Diego's reporter told her audience. In the interview, she set Obama up with a perfectly pitched softball the president couldn't have been more eager to take a swing at: 'What do you want individual San Diegans to know about sequestration?' she asked."
These willing lapdogs and stenographers follow in the footsteps of the hallowed Fishwrap of Record, which 'fessed up last month to allowing Obama campaign officials to have "veto power" over statements. "We don't like the practice," said Dean Baquet, managing editor for news at The New York Times. "We encourage our reporters to push back. Unfortunately this practice is becoming increasingly common, and maybe we have to push back harder."
If not the 2012 GOP presidential ticket, then who? If not now, then when?