A reporter from the Daily Caller website interrupted President Obama during his Rose Garden announcement of a new immigration policy. Neil Munro shouted out a question while the president was still delivering his prepared remarks, drawing a sharp rebuke from a peeved president. “Excuse me, sir,” Obama said. “It’s not time for questions, sir. Not while I’m speaking,” Obama said. Watch the exchange below.
Obama’s response and his subsequent exchange with Munro lit up the Twittersphere, which mostly criticized Munro for heckling. (According to an account from the Associated Press, Munro asked “Why do you favor foreigners over American workers?”) But Munro, who’s worked for Tucker Carlson’s Daily Caller website for the last two years, said in a statement that he “timed the question believing the president was closing his remarks, because naturally I have no intention of interrupting the president of the United States. I know he rarely takes questions before walking away from the podium.”
It’s true that Obama did not take questions, as is often the case in Rose Garden announcements (from presidents of both parties). But it didn’t appear that Obama was nearing his finish when Munro interrupted, as CNN’s Brienna Keilar pointed out in a tweet. “I was two people over from Neil Munro. No one thought the president was wrapping up. I give that statement a great big Cow Pie Award.”
In a statement on the Daily Caller website, Carlson defended his reporter, “I don’t remember Diane Sawyer scolding her colleague Sam Donaldson for heckling President Reagan. And she shouldn’t have. A reporter’s job is to ask questions and get answers. Our job is to find out what the federal government is up to. Politicians often don’t want to tell us. A good reporter gets the story. We’re proud of Neil Munro.”