We've been hard on ABC News' Jake "The Octogon" Tapper, because we think he can seem rather dickish. But today he used his dickishness for good and not evil, and for that we thank him.
This afternoon, Tapper asked White House press secretary Robert Gibbs about Joe Biden's crazy panic-inducing call for Americans to save themselves by withdrawing from society on the Today Show. Gibbs stammered and blinked a lot and reformulated Biden's comments into his dreamworld version in which they were totally anodyne.
Tapper followed up with his traditional furrowed brow, cocked eye, and subdued voice betraying just a hint of barely restrained outrage. We braced for dickishness!
With all due respect, and I sympathize with you trying to explain the vice president's comments, but that's not even remotely close to what he said.
Gibbs countered with, "Jake, I understand what he said. And I'm telling you what he meant to say." Everyone in the room laughed at him.
Score one for Journalist Jake! If you limit your outbursts to clean hits like that, Tapper, one day we'll stop juxtaposing your photograph with Paul Rudd playing Brian Fontana in Anchorman every time we write about you. Also, you asked a substantive, well-phrased question about torture at the White House press conference last night, so there's that.
For the record: We don't hate all gaffe-centered political reporting, just fake-gaffe-centered political reporting. This one was as real as they come.