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Obama Interrupted

Pleasant weather in the Rose Garden does not guarantee a pleasant exchange between the president and the press.

As President Obama began his formal speech to announce his administration's decision to stop deporting young illegal immigrants who came to the United States as children, he confronted a member of the press in the audience.

Neil Munro, a reporter with The Daily Caller, shouted out, "Mr. President, why do you favor foreign workers over Americans?" while the president was still speaking.

Obama fought back saying, ""Excuse me sir. It's not time for questions sir."

"Are you going to take questions?" Munro asked.

"Not while I'm speaking," Obama finished.

This type of exchange is highly unusual. Traditionally, it is considered disrespectful to interrupt the president, any president, while he is talking during a formal statement.

While it is common to pepper him with questions once the statement is finished or during a press conference, seeing a reporter interrupt the president during a formal speech normally doesn't happen.

In a statement by Neil Munro he said, "I always go to the White House prepared with questions for our president. I timed the question believing the president was closing his remarks, because naturally I have no intention of interrupting the President of the United States. I know he rarely takes questions before walking away from the podium. When I asked the question as he finished his speech, he turned his back on the many reporters, and walked away while I and at least one other reporter asked questions."

Tucker Carlson, the Editor-in-Chief, also put out a statement saying, "I don't remember Diane Sawyer scolding her colleague Sam Donaldson for heckling President Reagan. And she shouldn't have. A reporter's job is to ask questions and get answers. Our job is to find out what the federal government is up to. Politicians often don't want to tell us. A good reporter gets the story. We're proud of Neil Munro."

The tense exchange in the Rose Garden also started a conversation on popular social media websites. David Nakamura of The Washington Post wrote on his twitter account that The Daily Caller founder Tucker Carlson said the White House Press Secretary, @PressSec, emailed him and asked to talk about the reporter who interrupted Obama during his speech.

There was also a fake Twitter account created, @whheckler, labeling itself the "red-headed stepchild of the White House Press Corps."

According to Democratic Caucus Vice Chairman Xavier Becerra (D-CA) said the Daily Caller reporter who interrupted the president "doesn't get it."

"The president is trying to make the immigration system work more effectively. He is saying to those who have grown up in this country, rather than deport them after they've earned bachelor's degrees at some of our best universities... we realize they're not a public threat."

Fox's Paige Dukeman contributed to this report.

 

 

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