Helen Thomas

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As introduced by Geov Parrish for his interview with Helen Thomas in March 2004:

"Veteran White House Press Corps journalist Helen Thomas is now a columnist for Hearst Newspapers, after a stunning 57 years working for UPI, 40 of them as the wire service's White House correspondent. She's grilled presidents from Kennedy to Dubya, and has set a host of firsts: the first woman officer of the National Press Club after it agreed to admit women as members; the first woman president of the White House Correspondents Association; the first woman member of the Gridiron Club, and later its first woman president; the first woman reporter, in 1961, to close a presidential news conference.
...
These days, as the reigning octogenarian queen of the D.C. press corps, she's free to speak her mind - and her take on White House journalism, and on the administration it now covers, is scathing."

Quotes from the above referenced interview:

  • "The secrecy in this administration has reached the highest levels. That's never been seen before. Everybody has to be on board with this president. Nobody plays devil's advocate ... There is no search for answers in this President."
  • "You get out of that by demanding answers: What is terrorism? What is terror? Why did the President try to kill two investigations of 9-11?... If you can't get to the root of a problem, how can you solve it? There aren't enough guns in the world to kill hatred."

Other observations:

  • "Bush's policy of pre-emptive war is immoral - such a policy would legitimize Pearl Harbor." "It's bombs away for Iraq and on our civil liberties if Bush and his cronies get their way. Dissent is patriotic!" [1][2]
  • "The imperial presidency has arrived." "Some day he is going to try to give a war and nobody is going to come." [3]
  • "The surest sign that the White House was using Treasury Secretary Paul O'Neill as a scapegoat for its failed economic policies was the timing of his forced resignation by President George W. Bush." [4]
  • Reportedly: "This is the worst president ever." [5]

Serves on the media awards committee of the American Academy of Diplomacy.