Peekaboo With Kids Is Classic Political Game

Puff piece with young daughters just another episode of political peekaboo
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 14, 2008 9:50 AM CDT
Barack Obama and his wife Michelle watch an Independence Day parade with their two daughters, Malia, right, and Sasha in Butte, Mont., Friday, July 4, 2008.    (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)
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(Newser) – The press tries to treat politicians’ offspring, particularly younger ones, with kid gloves, writes David Carr of the New York Times—so it’s no wonder there was a furor when Barack Obama let Access Hollywood interview his 10- and 7-year-old daughters. Many reporters were irked by the beyond-puff piece, and Obama swiftly said he wouldn’t do it again, drawing the curtain back over his family.

“Politicians are allowed to deploy their children as cuddly human jewelry when it suits their needs," Carr writes, "but then tuck them back behind the firewall.” But "this game of peekaboo—fine if you fawn, heck to pay if you don’t—drives reporters nuts, a sense that campaigns and presidents are having it both ways."