Questions that deserve an answer … but don't get one

Monday, September 14, 2020
 | 
Steve Jordahl (OneNewsNow.com)

Baier and Ducklo (Sept 2020)Since the beginning of the year, Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden has taken almost no interviews – and his team has granted only a few more. An interview with a Biden surrogate last week may provide some insight into why.

Trump supporters are calling it a "bloodbath," a "schooling," a "master class in how to do interviews." In contrast, Biden supporters are completely ignoring it. Last Thursday night, TJ Ducklo – national press secretary for the Biden-Harris presidential campaign – sat down for some questions with Fox News anchor Bret Baier (see a portion of that interview below):

Baier: "Let me just clarify. You're saying that Joe Biden was for closing down travel from China when the president did it?"

Ducklo: "Joe Biden has been clear that he was not against that travel ban …"

Baier: "He was for it?"

Ducklo: "Joe Biden has been clear about this, Bret …"

Baier: "You're saying yes, he was for the China travel ban when the president implemented it."

Ducklo: "The important thing about the travel ban …"

Baier: "Yes or no, yes or no, TJ."

But Ducklo just kept digging the hole:

Baier: "Has Joe Biden ever used a teleprompter during local interview or to answer Q&A with supporters?"

Ducklo: "Bret, we are not going to engage – this is straight from the Trump campaign."

Baier: "Well, yeah, they're using it. … Can you say yes or no?"

Ducklo: "They talk about it every day, Bret, because they don't have a coherent strategy."

Baier: "Well, you have an answer, yes or no?"

Ducklo: "Bret, they talk about it every day …"

Baier: "I understand, but you can't answer the question?"

Ducklo: "Bret, I'm not going to allow the Trump campaign to funnel their questions through Fox News and get me to respond to that."

OneNewsNow spoke with Curtis Houck of Media Research Center, who argues that the Biden campaign obviously doesn't have a positive agenda to run on.

Houck

"They're incapable of really answering anything without making it all about Donald Trump, which just goes to show how broken some people are in today's body politic," says Houck.

And he explains there's a lesson to be learned for aspiring journalists: "Sometimes the shorter questions, the questions that don't use big words, [the questions] that really cut to the chase and really involve a yes or no answer – [sometimes they] can be the most effective."

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