"What Happens When the White House Press Corps Seizes the Agenda?"

"To get the public to move on climate change, President Obama won't just need to end-run Congress. He'll need to end-run his own press corps, too. A news analysis."

"There's an adorably naïve tendency among many who live and breathe environmental issues – journalists, scientists, advocates – to presume that reason, backed by science, will rule the day, any day now.

I recommend either one of two easy cures for this: Watch an hour of Fox News, America's most-watched cable news network by a long shot. Or do what I did earlier this week: Watch the White House press corps.

Climate change was ostensibly the Story of the Day for Monday's daily briefing: White House Counselor John Podesta, the administration's climate point man, headlined the affair. He showed slides and took questions for 24 minutes before being whisked away, with reporters invited to continue the dialogue with Press Secretary Jay Carney.

To be fair, the climate questions were both logical and appropriate, with not a dumb one in the bunch: Fracking, climate denial, infrastructure and more.

But with one exception, they ended when Podesta left the room. Led by its TV correspondents, the White House press had bigger fish to fry than the mere Earth itself.

That's right. It was Benghazi time."

Peter Dykstra reports for The Daily Climate May 9, 2014.

SEE ALSO:

"Science or Spin?: Assessing the Accuracy of Cable News Coverage of Climate Science" (Union of Concerned Scientists)

"How Cable News Covered The Landmark Climate Change Report" (Climate Progress)

"Climate Change: Is There Anything That Can Awaken Americans To the Danger?" (Knight Science Journalism Tracker)

"Analysis: Newspaper Coverage of Climate Change Drops Despite Release of Major UN Reports" (Carbon Brief)

"Study: Fox News Botches Climate-Change Coverage" (Washington Post)

"AP Etc: Nat'l Climate Assessment Says We're in Deep. So Many Such Stories Lately - Reliable Reporters Slog On." (Knight Science Journalism Tracker)

"ANALYSIS: How The Media Covered The U.N. Climate Reports In Three Charts" (Media Matters)

"Fox News Climate Change Coverage Is Now 28% Accurate, Up From 7%" (Guardian)

"Most Cable News Coverage Of Climate Change Isn't Exactly Accurate: Report" (Huffington Post)

"How Cable News Covered The Landmark Climate Change Report" (Climate Progress)

"Climate Change Hits the Big Time on Prime Time" (Indian Country Today Media Network)

"Report: The Media’s Gender Bias Extends To Climate Coverage" (Salon)

"Jon Stewart Continues Being Amazing, Rips CNN for Lack of Climate Coverage" (Grist)

"Climate Debate Isn’t So Heated in the U.S." (New York Times)

"Wall Street Journal’s Attempts To Politicize National Climate Assessment Fall Flat" (Climate Science Watch)

"Charles Krauthammer: Climate Change Is A 'Superstition' Like A Native American 'Rain Dance'" (Huffington Post)

"Republicans Portray Obama Climate Push As A Distraction" (Huffington Post

"How The Media Tackles The Climate Change Debate" (WBUR/Here and Now")

Friday, May 9, 2014