The White House communications team is no longer taking prisoners when it comes to dealing with adversaries in the media. The administration, instead of just working through the media to fact check stories and statements, is going direct to the source.
The president approves the strategy, telling aides to “call ‘em out,” when it comes to “pundits, politicians and outlets that make what the White House believes to be misleading or simply false claims,” writes TIME‘s Michael Scherer in a story today, titled “Calling ‘Em Out: The White House Takes on the Press.”
“The general in this war is [Anita] Dunn, 51, a veteran campaign strategist who arrived at the White House in May. She has been a force in Democratic campaigns since the late 1980s and helmed Obama’s rapid-response operation during his run,” he wrote.
Dunn told TIME, “Here in the White House you are reluctant to feel like you have to go to that place, but we have to be more aggressive rather than just sit back and defend ourselves, because they will say anything. They will take any small thing and distort it.” White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs used a baseball analogy. “The only way to get somebody to stop crowding the plate is to throw a fastball at them. They move,” he said.