In a New York Times article today about how the entertainment press is giving Britney-sized attention to this year’s presidential candidates (“It’s the greatest reality show on television,” per Inside Edition’s producer), Clinton spokesman Jay Carson explains why the campaigns might also love Us back.

What might a People or Extra interview offer a candidate that a major newspaper or network news sit-down might not?

“The interviews are usually very issue-oriented and not process-focused, and it’s an important way to reach a lot of voters who may not be watching the Sunday shows every Sunday,” Mr. Carson said.

So, to Carson’s mind, a candidate is more likely to be asked about issues (rather than strategy and process and horserace) by Star than while in The Situation Room. Plus, not everyone is Meeting the Press.

The Times, perhaps sensing the dis on the Serious Press, adds this parenthetical: (“It also helps when a typical question, as Mrs. Clinton was asked recently by Entertainment Tonight, is about how she manages to ‘look so good in the morning’.)” Which actually sounds pretty “process-focused” to me.


Liz Cox Barrett is a writer at CJR.