Take Friday's briefing. Forty Seven minutes long and the word "(laughter)" appeared in the transcript 28 times. That's a belly buster every 100 seconds. And the humorous topics included: Supreme Court appointee possibilities, the Al Qaeda operative Al-Marri's brief jail sentencing, and the White House's pressure of a Chrysler lender to accept an unfair bankruptcy settlement.
Apparently the comedic potential for that last topic was poor, as for some reason it ended the briefing.
Jake Tapper, the only White House Press Corps attendee with a set had the nerve to ask this question.
Q And just to follow up on al-Marri, what do you say to Americans who hear that al-Marri, who has admitted being trained by al Qaeda, given a mission by Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, sent to the United States to commit terrorist acts, to hear that this person has been sentenced to 15 years in prison, with or without time served. But that doesn't really seem like enough time in prison for somebody who's clearly an al Qaeda -- an admitted al Qaeda sleeper agent.
MR. GIBBS: Well, understand, Jake, that this is a victory for the rule of law because he's finally going to jail, convicted of the crime of aiding that terrorist network.
No laughter after that one, and no follow up by anyone else who might have spoken up for "Americans" on the issue. Rest assured that if it doesn't generate a good set of yucks on the first go 'round the subject is finis.
The daily White House Press Briefing under Barack Obama: It's a love fest, comic fest with little or no journalizin' going on.