President Uses Interviews with Local Reporters to Pitch His Budget Proposal to Republican Strongholds

By Andrew Gauthier 

“I think with local reporters he thought that he’d get a friendlier conversation than the correspondents that cover him everyday,” WWBT reporter Ryan Nobles explained on the NBC-affiliate’s evening newscast on Wednesday, after interviewing the President.

“I think this will be the first of many opportunities that stations like us get to interview the President between now and when he’s up for reelection.”

Nobles was invited to the White House on Wednesday, along with Carol Williams of Cincinnati’s WCPO and Charles Benson of Milwaukee’s WTMJ, to do one-on-one interviews with the President, who is in the midst of selling his new budget proposal to the public.


The invitations were, as Nobles pointed out last night, a way for Obama to target the local contingencies of the country’s three most prominent critics of the budget: Richmond’s Eric Cantor, the House Majority Leader; Cincinnati’s John Boehner, the Speaker of the House; and Milwaukee’s Paul Ryan, Chairman of the House Budget Committee.

“It’s interesting to see that, now here we are at the two-year mark in his Presidency, they’re already gearing up in campaign mode,” Nobles said.

All three reporters included questions from local viewers in their interviews. WCPO received over 200 questions from viewers via Facebook and email on Wednesday morning and Williams asked the President two of the questions.

Following the interview, WCPO’s Syed Shabbir spoke with one of the Cincinnati residents whose questions were asked, a small business owner concerned about the rising cost of health care. Video:

Here’s Williams’ full (raw) interview with Obama: Here’s Nobles’s one-on-one with the President:

Raw footage of Benson’s interview with Obama can he found here.