By Mary Kate Cary, Thomas Jefferson Street blog
All of the problems with President Obama's appearance on Jay Leno disappeared last night on 60 Minutes. There were no attempts at humor that backfired or needed an apology afterward. A serious reporter, Steve Kroft, was controlling the agenda, not a professional comedian. Most of all, the interview did nothing to diminish of the office of the presidency—if anything, having the interview take place at the White House added to the President's credibility and enhanced his stature.
Smart move from a communications point of view. The president addressed substantive questions well and seemed relaxed, according to some of the critics this morning—or a little too smiley and laughing, say others. But I thought he came across as confident and in control. Ending the interview by showing viewers his girls' new swing set, while politically shrewd, came across as charming.
Appearing on 60 Minutes was a win for the president. He should do more of these types of news interviews and stay away from the late-night scene.
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