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Thursday, February 18, 2021
MRC's Houck Cheers Right-Wing Fox News Reporter's Perfomance At WH Press Briefings
Topic: Media Research Center

Curtis Houck has become the Media Research Center's designated hater of Biden White House press secretary Jen Psaki. It's a bit of a change given his previous job as the MRC's designated worshipper of Trump press secretary Kayleigh McEnany -- for one, he has to work harder, given that Psaki is giving briefings every weekday whereas McEnany held them only sporadically.

But Houck still has to adhere to the MRC's narrative, which is that all reporters for non-right-wing outlets are evili while all right-wing reporters are virtuous beings who can do no wrong. Thus, Houck has switched his worship instinct to Fox News reporter and nepotism hire Peter Doocy. Houck gushed over Doocy in a Jan. 25 post:

With liberal reporters continuing to act as no more than lapdogs for the Biden administration or attack dogs from the left, Fox News White House correspondent Peter Doocy has continued to separate himself from the pack (as he did during the campaign) by asking tough but respectful questions of Press Secretary Jen Psaki and President Joe Biden himself. 

On Monday, Doocy did just that with questions about the coronavirus vaccine, left-wing violence in Portland and Seattle, and a shifting of the goal-posts on how much control Americans had over the virus.

Doocy had two rounds with Psaki and, in the first, he had three questions.


Unlike the belligerence and condescension we saw with the press corps under Donald Trump, Doocy has been able to ask tough but respectful questions of Biden and his team. What a novel concept.

Unsurprisingly, Houck absolutely refuses to award any credit to Psaki for letting a hostile reporter asks three rounds of questions -- something his beloved McEnany would never have let a "liberal" reporter do. While Houck was cheering Doocy for asking hostile questions of Psaki, he attacked reporters who dared to ask even slightly challenging questions of McEnany.

The next day, Houck was slobbering over Doocy again:

With former National Security Adviser-turned-Domestic Policy Council head Susan Rice appearing at Tuesday’s White House press briefing, the mood was one of ebullience as the liberal press corps felt at home with key allies, as Rice and Press Secretary Jen Psaki talked about creating an America based on “equity” to atone for its life of sin. 

But amidst all the softballs, Fox News White House correspondent Peter Doocy came with actual questions, ranging from FEMA funding to the impeachment trial to left-wing violence (and then later question about the Olympics).

Doocy wasn’t granted a question for Rice, but he got the third spot in Psaki’s pecking order.

Again, Psaki received no credit for taking questions from a hostile reporter.

On Jan. 28, Houck was sad that Fox News was "out of the rotation for White House Briefing Room seats," but he claimed that "Thursday’s briefing left plenty of space for reporters from the liberal media to step up and commit random acts of journalism. Thankfully, some did with pointed questions calling out President Biden’s plethora of executive orders and the reality that the administration had sided with teachers' unions over “science” when it came to keeping schools closed." Then he added: "Unfortunately, there were still reporters that were far more casual and friendly, lobbing either bland or outright softballs."

We don't recall Houck ever criticizing right-wing reporters who asked softball questions of McEnany.

Houck offered a summary in a Jan. 29 post:

Friday concluded the first full week of Biden White House press briefings and, by this point, we’ve noticed a few trends. Aside from Press Secretary Jen Psaki refusing to answer any number of questions, two takeaways are the lack of condescension and hostility from reporters and biting responses from the press secretary. Instead, we’ve seen plenty of softballs, reverence for administration officials, bland questioning, and on Friday, the end of Brian Karem’s charade.

Whether it be FNC’s Peter Doocy or surprise entries from liberal outlets, there have been plenty of tough questions. 

Houck didn't mention that McEnany was the one supplying all the  condescension and hostility during her tenure. Instead, he sighed fondly "whenever Kayleigh McEnany, Sarah Sanders, or Sean Spicer schooled a reporter."

Houck couldn't be bothered to offer such a granular analysis of McEnany's performance -- he was too busy crushing on her.

Posted by Terry K. at 8:57 PM EST
Updated: Thursday, February 18, 2021 9:02 PM EST

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