Programs such as The Daily Show have come to play a significant role in politics. In his interview last night on "60 Minutes," the president addressed criticism of his recent appearance on the program:
KROFT: One of the complaints has been that you've appeared on Comedy Central The View. They think it trivializes the president. I don't know if you saw this cartoon [Steve Kroft shows President Obama a political cartoon from the Daily News.]
PRESIDENT OBAMA: Let me take a look at it.
KROFT: Body by Bam.
PRESIDENT OBAMA: Body by Bam.
KROFT: From The Daily News.
PRESIDENT OBAMA: The challenge right now, and you know this better than I do, Steve, is that it used to be a President could call a press conference, and the three major networks would come, and he'd talk to 'em, and you pretty much reached everybody in America. And these days the closest I can get to that is bein' on 60 Minutes.
But there are a whole bunch of folks you know, unwisely on their part, who don't watch 60 Minutes, who watch The Daily Show¸ or watch The View. And so I've got to adapt the presidency to reach as many people as possible in as many settings as possible so that they can hear directly from me.
This is an example of where, you know, on the one hand folks say, "Well, you know he's a little too remote." Then if I'm on The View, "Well, you know, he shouldn't be you know on some daytime TV show you know, he should be a little more imperious."
And, you know, I guess my attitude is if I'm reaching people, if I'm talkin' to 'em. If I'm engaged with 'em, whatever the venue, then hopefully that makes people a little clear about what it is that I'm trying to do, and understand the challenges that we face. And so I'm willing to take the risks of overexposure on that front