Perhaps the most disturbing thing about the Pitney-Milbank debate is that Dana Milbank simply is unable to read the English language and relate it to his readers.
Yes, Nico Pitney was told in advance by the White House that President Obama was probably going to call on him, and the White House phone call seemed to suggest that it was interested in hearing about Iran.
Milbank then twisted that into the White House asking for a particular question, a particular phrasing, and (impliedly) a particular frame. Milbank also asserted that Pitney’s e-mail to Iranian facebook sites had said that the White House had asked him to contact those sites, when the e-mail said nothing of the kind, and did not even suggest it.
As Pitney said at the end of the exchange, it’s pretty hard to think that there was collusion when Obama then ducked the question, and even Amanda Carpenter of the Washington Times acknowledged that it a legitimate question (which is more than you can say of Dana Milbank’s focus on how Obama looks in a swimsuit.).
Milbank raised this issue. He attacked Pitney. He wouldn’t let go after several days. And all of it was based upon a fiction that he himself had concocted. I don’t know what else you could say that shows the corruption of the White House press corps.