obama on the campaign process, rezko

Many have heard my rant about getting news: edit out as many editors as you can. Meaning, if you can watch the entire speech on C-SPAN instead of the 45 second clip - do it.

Typical of Chicago politics, we've got another big case happening at the Dirksen building - the trial of Chicago businessman Tony Rezko. He has serious ties to the governor, but wouldn't be getting as much press if it weren't for him also knowing Barack Obama personally.

On Friday, Obama sat down with Chicago Trib editors for an exhaustive interview on the subject, and the entire transcript is posted. Worth the read. Not just about the issue, but also thinking about the political process - the relationship of the press to the presidency.

At the end of the transcript, Obama is wrapping up and is typically helpfully descriptive of a complicated relationship:

You know, [Tribune editor] Anne Marie [Lipinski] asked what it is that I've learned. Learning the relationship with the press in a national campaign is a challenge. I mean, I mean, I will say this, that there's no experience similar to this in terms of living in the fish bowl. And there are times where very legitimate and fair questions are raised about my inconsistencies, contradictions or foibles.

There are times where, you know, folks are just picking at you, you know, because they need some copy. And so what it can induce is a mentality of let's be very protective of information for interviews and access so we can control the narrative a little more. That's something we have to be careful of, not just as a candidate but presumably even more so as a president because what you want to do is balance, not responding to every reporter out there, maintaining a sense of openness and accessibility and a willingness to engage the criticisms that are made. And that's something that we're still learning as a team

I thought the entire interview was a good example of Obama being honest. Trib columnist John Kass allows for shreds of remaining suspicion. But his column would be boring if it didn't, right?

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