In a clear attempt to woo largely establishment conservative commentators who have loudly opposed the GOP’s current government shutdown strategy, President Obama held an off-the-record meeting with the Washington Post’s Charles Krauthammer, the Wall Street Journal editorial page editor Paul Gigot, National Review’s Washington editor Robert Costa, syndicated columnist and former CNN co-host Kathleen Parker, and Byron York of the Washington Examiner.
This is hardly the first time Obama has held select, politically-motivated off-the-record sessions. In May, the White House held a “deep background” session with select reporters as the Benghazi scandal reared its head. In September, Obama held an off-the-record meeting with reporters and columnists on his Syria strategy. Obama’s cozy relationship with select members of the press has created abiding unhappiness among many members of the press corps, who feel that the president has created a stratified system with favored and unfavored journalists.