I generally agree with Michael Scherer’s assessment of the great Wapo-Huffpo faceoff. Too much petulance by both Nico Pitney and Dana Milbank on Howie Kurtz’s show. But let’s cut to the chase: Pitney is right; Milbank is wrong. Yes, the Obama Administration let Pitney know, in advance, that the President might ask Pitney for a question from the Iranians who were contributing to his (excellent) live-blogging of the crisis. But the Administration didn’t ask to know what the question was in advance. And–here’s the point–it was a great question, about whether the President would continue to seek negotiations with the Khamenei-Ahmadinejad regime. And Obama ducked the answer.
It seems to me that the real question here isn’t why the Obama Administration solicited a question from the Iranians trying to get their story out via Pitney. The real question is why this has become such a big deal. A good question at a press conference is rare enough. A good question is a good question. Period.