Cutter: Obama interviews with ‘People,’ Entertainment Tonight ‘important’

Obama deputy campaign manager Stephanie Cutter on Sunday defended President Obama against claims he has avoided answering questions from Washington’s press corps, saying his interviews with local and entertainment media sources were “equally important.”

Republicans have hit Obama saying he has avoided taking questions from national political reporters but sat for interviews this week with reporters from People Magazine and Entertainment Tonight. 

On CNN’s “State of the Union,” Cutter dismissed suggestions those interviews were more important to the campaign than national news media but said they had a valuable role in the president’s messaging. 

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“Not more important, but equally important, and that is where a lot of Americans get their news,” said Cutter. “And I think the president is going to continue doing that.”

Cutter said that Obama had provided more than enough availability to the media and was granting interviews to local outlets as well.

“The president was talking to reporters on the ground in Iowa,” Cutter said. “Do you think that’s less important than talking to somebody like you? Everywhere that the president goes he is talking to reporters.” 

She said the campaign would “spent our time talking to media all over this country.”

Obama’s last formal White House news conference was on March 6.

Cutter also said that Obama was also far more transparent than his GOP rival Mitt Romney. 

“Mitt Romney might have had two media availabilities, but what did he tell you,” said Cutter. “He told you he wasn't going to release the taxes, because he was afraid of getting attacked. And then he, you know, spouted off lies about the president's Medicare system. So do you find that media availability really useful if he is not being transparent about his own policies and distorting the presidents?”