More Crony Media: Sebelius reached out to major media to head off bad press before Obamacare launch

Nick Sorrentino
Posted: Feb 14, 2014 12:01 AM
More Crony Media: Sebelius reached out to major media to head off bad press before Obamacare launch

We have noted many times the very close relationship between the current White House and the #oldmedia. The mainstream news outlets (really less and less mainstream with each passing day) have been stalwart allies of this president and have been generally positively disposed toward this president (and candidate) from the get go. Controlling the message has been key to keeping Obama afloat.

Add the large number of journalists who now work in the White House, and the close ties to George Soros’s Media Matters outfit which crafts talking points for the media, it is clear that controlling the “narrative” is of the highest priority for this president. I am pretty sure that the staffers over at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue are of the “perception is reality” school.

Of course this is totally false. Any good poker play can tell you that perception certainly is not reality.One can fool people with lies and obfuscation but it doesn’t change reality.

Leading up to the launch of the most important “achievement” of the Obama presidency, Obamacare, the White House knew that it needed to control the message. It would have a hard enough time even if the program worked, never mind if it turned out to be the “train wreck” that so many warned it was likely to become. Reality might be crashing down around them, but if they could keep the broader public from knowing just how bad things were and were likely to become, perhaps the giant social experiment which is the ACA might survive.

In this effort the Kathleen Sebelius started reaching out to the message makers.

(From The Hill)

According to Sebelius’s draft schedules, obtained by The Hill under the Freedom of Information Act, Sebelius had coffee with The Washington Post’s former WonkBlog reporter Ezra Klein on August 2, about two months before the disastrous Oct. 1 launch of

Klein is a well-known policy reporter who is now leaving the Post to start his own media venture.

Sebelius’s outreach to the media also included joining a group of administration officials during a meeting with Thomas Friedman, The New York Times columnist.

“You will join the closing session of the day-long program put together to introduce Tom Friedman to various health care costs issues,” said a note to Sebelius on the April 23 meeting.

Less than a month later, The New York Times ran a Friedman column about how the number of healthcare information start-ups was evidence ObamaCare “already appears to be surprising on the upside.” Friedman says in the piece that HHS connected him with the companies he profiled.

The more than 750 pages of draft schedules obtained by The Hill run from late October 2012 to just past the Oct. 1, 2013 launch date of the healthcare exchanges.

Click here for the article.

To read more by Nick Sorrentino, visit