July 26, 2012

Romney in London.

NBC reports:
Romney’s press-corps faux pas: During his meeting with Miliband, according to the pool report, Romney answered questions from British reporters but did not take any questions from the American reporters, which isn’t protocol. In fact, it’s considered a bit of an insult... [F]olks, those of us that have traveled overseas and been involved in these VERY limited press avails have rarely seen heads of democracies TOTALLY ignore their own press corps but answer ANOTHER press corps’ questions....
Drama! I hope you were stamping your feet and balling up your little fists to go along with the all-caps shout-y stuff.

ADDED: Protocols of the Journalists of London... I was moved to look up "protocol" in the OED:
1b. Ancient Hist. The first sheet of a roll of papyrus, bearing the manufacturer's official mark; such a mark.
1885 Encycl. Brit. XVIII. 233/1 The first sheet of a roll was named πρωτόκολλον... On the Arab conquest of Egypt in the 7th century, the manufacture was continued, with the substitution of Arabic in marking the protocol....
The meaning used in the NBC article is #6:
a. The official rules of etiquette to be observed by the head of state and other dignitaries in ceremonies and relations with the representatives of other states; the procedure governing diplomatic occasions, affairs of state, etc.; the observance of this....

c. In extended use: the accepted or established code of behaviour in any group, organization, or situation; an instance of this.
I think it's good for journalists to be fussy and adamant about the accepted or established code of behaviour for their group. Is it protocol to accuse a presidential candidate of a breach of protocol when upon arrival in a foreign country he gives exclusive preference to the reporters of that country?

62 comments:

RonF said...

Seems to me it's reasonable to figure that American reporters get plenty of chances to ask questions of him face to face, but British reporters rarely do, so they should get priority.

ndspinelli said...

It's just a politician's way of flipping the bird.

Mr. Apropos said...

Humm... US reports and media are practically cheer leading for the other guy to win... why on Earth would that lead to be them ignored while on a publicity tour?

Halp, I'm confused...

Pogo said...

The American press corps is just an arm of the DNC, so screw 'em.

Homey don't play dat.

virgil xenophon said...

Unfortunately you're using logic, RonF, ALWAYS a dangerous thing these days..

Expat(ish) said...

"We have met the enemy and he is us"

Well, Pogo decontextualized, anyway.

-XC

PS - my grandparents had all these Pogo books, the only comics I ever saw, but I didn't really get them as an 8 year old. Wish I still had them.

Matthew Sablan said...

I'd be a little mad at the local press if they took an anonymous quote and accused me of being racist too. A little cold shoulder might show them.

rehajm said...

All part of today's meme that you must agree with a politician's values and ideas or else he will publicly shun you and block your ability to do your job. Unfortunate for you liberal media that you're on the wrong side here. You my need to get used to it...

Matthew Sablan said...

At least the foreign press has the excuse of not knowing what the local does; the U.S. press should have known better than to repeat it.

Leland said...

Seems to me that Romney also travelled overseas and felt that his time was best spent talking to reporters, who ordinarily don't get a chance to ask him questions. If he wanted to answer local American reporters questions, he could have stayed home.

By the way, how many NBC reporters had to fly to London to specifically cover Romney at the Olympics? How many NBC reporters were already there to cover the olympics, that one couldn't do a slight double duty assignment?

I wonder if the NBC reporter is just pissed they got to be in London as the games are starting, but had to stay with Romney and couldn't get tickets from corporate to catch an event.

Colonel Angus said...

I hope they had plenty of fainting couches.

Mitch H. said...

"Heads of democracies"? Did I miss four months & the election, or is Romney still a candidate, and not actually the head of state *or* government?

EDH said...

[F]olks, those of us that have traveled overseas and been involved in these VERY limited press avails have rarely seen heads of democracies TOTALLY ignore their own press corps but answer ANOTHER press corps’ questions...

Romney already won the election, or is that a prediction?

rhhardin said...

Faux pas is so French.

traditionalguy said...

Another gaffe by Mr Competant as the story line she just keeps on rolling, rolling along.

The Media is working hard to bring you the list of Mitt gaffes as they grow: riding a jet ski, his wife's blouse and horse cost too much money, he said anglo-saxon in England maybe implying that he is not a Kenyan...more tomorrow.

With such serious gaffes, he cannot help stop the current economic disaster that Bush caused. And Obama loves you.

Comanche Voter said...

Well geez---NBC gives Romney nothing but grief--and he ignores them in London.

And the Bamster only takes questions from those who will stop kissing his posterior for a second so they can ask a question?

Get over your own nasty self NBC. Nobody appointed you God for the day.

sydney said...

Well, the American media aren't exactly known for their accuracy. Why would anyone talk to them?

edutcher said...

We're taking MSLSD as the font of objectivity?

Here's what Fox reported.

People can make up their own minds.

Michelle Dulak Thomson said...

What Mitch H. said. Since when is Romney a "head" of a "democracy"? I don't know what the month is in press-corps-land, but it's still July over here.

And honestly, if you're going to complain about getting free plane tickets to London as one of the sad travails of your incredibly difficult job, I happen actually to own an extremely small violin, and I'd be delighted to play it for you.

wv: sAssys 11. Why, yes, I am. Sometimes.

Jay said...

have rarely seen heads of democracies TOTALLY ignore their own press corps

So Romney is the President now?

Remember when Obama had to take Mooch to yet another party and Clinton took over for about 45 minutes???

Icepick said...

If this is the best they can do to Romney, he's a cinch to win in November.

Christopher in MA said...

Fuck the American media. As John C. Wright pointed out in his latest blog post, they've gone from being biased pests to outright enemies of this country.

Additionally, considering that UK papers - even lefty rags like The Guardian - cover US politics in greater detail than Obama's fellators, Mitt should address the people who will report the news rather than just reprint DNC press releases.

I would love to be the press secretary in a Romney administration: "Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the White House press room. Take a good look around, because we're turning it back into a swimming pool.

I'm afraid neither I nor the President will be taking questions today. If you wish to file copy for your organizations, you are all, I'm sure, familiar with the direct number for the DNC.

Oh, one more thing - you have five minutes to be off the grounds before the Secret Service arrives. They have been given orders to shoot to kill.

Good day and thank you."

CJinPA said...

In fact, it’s considered a bit of an insult...

I've never, ever seen a report on an overseas "faux pas" and breech of "protocol" and "considered a bit of an insult" in which the offended party is not the host country, but the person writing the account.

What a glorious age we live in.

Mark said...

I was taught that it's rude to visit someone else's place and then ignore the host, sticking with your own clique instead.

Sounds like NBC is just fine playing the part of the Ugly American.

(BTW, if the slight was intentional, Romney is showing that he can play a long game; if he should become President, he's got a lot of repair work on the "Special Relationship" ahead of him, and making friends with the British press is a good start on that.)

edutcher said...

BTW, when did the journo-lists ever take Choom to task for his little fox paws of telling a reporter who was in danger of asking something substantive about how his old Senate seat was up for sale, "I don’t want you to waste your question"?

Imagine the Romster (or Dubya) trying to ration the number of questions.

Erik Robert Nelson said...

This is one of those invented gaffes. Someone hurt a reporter's feelings, and I'm supposed to feel outrage? Had Romney answered the US reporters' questions, we'd be hearing about how he snubbed local reporters and how he should have focused on them instead.

If this is the best the media can do at this point, then Mitt is in good shape. Do they even realize how transparent their partisanship has become? Something tells me that they don't.

Fen said...

Our "JournoLists" ? Fuck them.

karrde said...

I'm with the five people who already asked the question.

Romney is a former executive of Massachusetts, and a former executive of several corporations.

In what sense is he a head of a democracy, as implied in the article?

@Ann, I am intrigued to learn that the word "protocol" came from the description for the outer cover--the cover page, if you will--on a scroll.

It's apparently the publisher's imprint, as originally done in the days of pre-bound-book publishing.

granmary said...

Don't be silly, Ann. The rule of protocol for journalists exists of one sentence: "It is acceptable to do anything that will undermine any republican, but unacceptable to ever criticize any liberal."

John Burgess said...

I'm amused!

When I was Press Attaché at the US Embassy in London during the Clinton Administration, we had the opposite problem. Couldn't get an American official to take questions from the British press--even at 10 Downing Street--unless it was an interview the official was ready to spin.

Alex said...

99% of the American press corps are Obama bots looking to plant anything on a Republican.

Revenant said...

I'm belatedly hopping on the "um, how's he a 'head of a democracy'" bandwagon.

But I'm casting a few longing glances at the "somebody call the waahmbulance for these poor reporters" bandwagon, too.

Calypso Facto said...

Haha. NBC has hurt feelings because Mr. Romney didn't call on them in London today. Yet, back here in the USA, remember this move cheered by NBC, et. al.?:
"Today the White House stepped up its attack on Fox News, announcing that the network would no longer be able to conduct interviews with officials as a member of the Press Pool."

Original Mike said...

"but did not take any questions from the American reporters, which isn’t protocol. In fact, it’s considered a bit of an insult..."

Romney insulted the American press?

Good.

garage mahal said...
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garage mahal said...

Daily Telegraph: “Mitt Romney is perhaps the only politician who could start a trip that was supposed to be a charm offensive by being utterly devoid of charm and mildly offensive."

Thorley Winston said...

NBC apparently is predicting that Mitt Romney will win the presidential election.

Either that or they’ve decided to hold Romney to same standards that they’d hold an American President to even though they’ve shown precious little inclination to hold the current President to the same.

Carnifex said...

The press was insulted? Good to know that they know what we feel everday we see their drivel. Now if they can just muster up some insult from the way Dem's treat them as the lapdogs they are, then I might give a fuck. Till then, don't care.

rehajm said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
rehajm said...

What NBC fails to mention in their little rant about Romney snubbing them is that just moments before the meeting with Cameron he granted NBC news an interview. British press of course took this opportunity to distort his quotes with the catchy and liberal friendly headline- Romney questions London's readiness for Olympic Games.

So the recap goes something like this: At 7:04am in an exclusive NBC interview Romney insults the British population. At 7:10am Romney commits international incident with American press by not answering questions from NBC reporters he fielded questions from 6 minutes ago.

Fen said...

50 Journalists could go down in a plane crash and I would be sad that it wasn't 100.

cold pizza said...

Did Romney lock a reporter away in a closet? I must have him confused with some other politician. -CP

elkh1 said...

Romney knew the American press would do an Andrea Mitchell editing on what he said no matter what he said. They would probably ask about his dog that wasn't eaten by Obama, or about his wife's horse, or ... to pop up Obama. So why bother to give them ammunitions?

He should tell the press: it's not about you, get over it.

Michael said...

Garage:"Daily Telegraph: “Mitt Romney is perhaps the only politician who could start a trip that was supposed to be a charm offensive by being utterly devoid of charm and mildly offensive."

Don't worry, Garage, Romney plans to send back the statue of Churchill the minute he moves into the Oval Office. He will give the Queen an iPad filled with his business tips and music selections.

Eric said...

There really isn't any reason for a Republican candidate to give the white house press corps the time of day. They cast off any pretense of impartiality circa 2004.

yashu said...

Don't worry, Garage, Romney plans to send back the statue of Churchill the minute he moves into the Oval Office. He will give the Queen an iPad filled with his business tips and music selections.

And he'll give the PM a variety pack of DVDs with the wrong region code. And he'll toast the Queen and keep talking as the band plays "God Save the Queen."

Eric said...

NBC apparently is predicting that Mitt Romney will win the presidential election.

Stating the obvious. At this point it's Romney's to lose. The left leaning pollsters are making it seem like a horse race by oversampling Democratic voters, but that's not going to fly at the polls.

Original Mike said...

I've never understood why American press ask domestic questions of an American politician standing at a foreign dais. Isn't that insulting to the host country? Seems to me, it is.

Strelnikov said...

Journalists have an "accepted code of behavior"? That's news.

garage mahal said...

Don't worry, Garage, Romney plans to send back the statue of Churchill the minute he moves into the Oval Office.

Haha. Romney moving into the Oval Office. Good one.

Original Mike said...

"Haha. Romney moving into the Oval Office. Good one."

You don't know how good that makes me feel.

Colonel Angus said...

Haha. Romney moving into the Oval Office. Good one.

Forgive me if I'm confusing you with someone else but aren't you the commenter that was assured Scott Walker would be soundly defeated and frog marched to prison?

garage mahal said...

Forgive me if I'm confusing you with someone else but aren't you the commenter that was assured Scott Walker would be soundly defeated and frog marched to prison?

Wrong on both. You guys have severe reading problems or really bad memory.

Original Mike said...

Yes, Colonel. He's the one.

garage mahal said...

Yes, Colonel. He's the one.

Liar.

Cedarford said...

One thing I hate about the press is that the ones travelling with the President tend to be a pack obsessed with news or scandal inside DC as THE ONLY NEWS THAT COUNTS, THE ONLY QUESTIONS THEY WILL ASK IN A FOREIGN COUNTRY!!

To me, it is rude and inconsiderate beyond words that when Bill Clinton visits Japan, 100% of the questions coming from the White House Press Corps were directed about American domestic issues.
Or when Bush was in Mexico and in a joint press conference with the President of Mexico, all the questions dealt with Iraq, Valerie Plame...and Congressional elections. And not one question was posed to the Mexican President by the American journalists.
They treat other nations as just alternate sites for the White House Press room.

It would end very fast if the President or Sec of State on those summits warned the media they better stick to the venue...or they will not be called on. Just journalists of the host country.

Original Mike said...

@Cedarford - Yes. I've always been embarrassed about this boorish behavior of "our" press corps.

shishka said...

when they start acting like real journalists again, then maybe we'll follow their silly protocols.

sane_voter said...

Here is Romney at his best answering an inane question from Brian Williams (NBC natch). Hilarious

Special Report on Fox showed it last night.
http://youtu.be/a0i6sKELtJg

garage mahal said...
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The Crack Emcee said...

This will be the second time in four years a candidate has gone overseas, to present himself to the world, before the people he has set out to lead really know who he is.

Romney's actions, to me, reveal his desire to keep it that way.

And the rest of you are helping him - just like with Obama.

Do you do your kids homework as well?

This last 8 years have been the weirdest I have ever seen in politics, and that's saying something,..

gk1 said...

Meh, who cares how butt hurt the legacy media is about anything? They only serve the DNC narrative anyway. Fuck em'. NBC news will either be gone, merged with Entertainment Tonight or liquidated for pennies on the dollar in a few years.