So much for the ability of a "Free Press" to ask questions.
WFTV-Channel 9's Barbara West conducted a satellite interview with Sen. Joe Biden on Thursday. A friend says it's some of the best entertainment he's seen recently. What do you think?
West wondered about Sen. Barack Obama's comment, to Joe the Plumber, about spreading the wealth. She quoted Karl Marx and asked how Obama isn't being a Marxist with the "spreading the wealth" comment.
"Are you joking?" said Biden, who is Obama's running mate. "No," West said.
West later asked Biden about his comments that Obama could be tested early on as president. She wondered if the Delaware senator was saying America's days as the world's leading power were over.
"I don't know who's writing your questions," Biden shot back.
Biden so disliked West's line of questioning that the Obama campaign canceled a WFTV interview with Jill Biden, the candidate's wife.
"This cancellation is non-negotiable, and further opportunities for your station to interview with this campaign are unlikely, at best for the duration of the remaining days until the election," wrote Laura K. McGinnis, Central Florida communications director for the Obama campaign.
McGinnis said the Biden cancellation was "a result of her husband's experience yesterday during the satellite interview with Barbara West."
Here's a link to the interview: http://www.wftv.com/video/17790025/index.html.
WFTV news director Bob Jordan said, "When you get a shot to ask these candidates, you want to make the most of it. They usually give you five minutes."
Jordan said political campaigns in general pick and choose the stations they like. And stations often pose softball questions during the satellite interviews.
"Mr. Biden didn't like the questions," Jordan said. "We choose not to ask softball questions."
Jordan added, "I'm crying foul on this one."
Ask the wrong question? Get blackballed.