Last month, Politico conducted an “interview” with former Vice President Dick Cheney. As ThinkProgress noted at the time, the paper’s top reporters — Jim VandeHei and Mike Allen — transcribed Cheney’s attacks on Obama without challenge, criticism, or rebuttal.
Indeed, Cheney has been using Politico as his print version of Fox News. In May, Politico’s Allen was leaked an “exclusive” preview of Cheney’s attacks on Obama’s decision to close Guantanamo. Again in October, Allen “broke news” that Cheney was attacking Obama’s Afghanistan policy. And just last week, Allen again reported a Cheney attack on Obama’s handling of the Christmas Day terrorist incident that was released “in a statement to Politico.”
Does Cheney “have a thing with Politico?” MSNBC’s Chris Matthews asked Politico’s Jonathan Martin today on Hardball. “He uses you like he’d use Drudge or somebody,” Matthews charged. A stunned Martin had no response for why Cheney has been so willing to give Politico “exclusives.” “You’d have to ask the Vice President, Chris,” Martin responded, “I’m not sure.” Matthews kept pressing the issue:
MATTHEWS: I mean, he’s got his own news conduit.
MARTIN: You know, we aggressively report on both sides.
MATTHEWS: It’s not reporting. He feeds you this stuff. … I do like Politico. He’s feeding you guys this crap. [...]
What’s he call up and say? “I got a hot one for you, Jon. Can you take — what’s your email address?” Is that what he does?