Sometimes, when a politician gets under fire, they retreat and refuse to talk to the press - or some members of the press. It's been widely reported that while Wu has spoken to the AP, gone on KPOJ, and done a number of live television interviews, he's refused to talk to the Oregonian or Willamette Week since their initial stories. In part, that's led to the slow release of one detail after another, as he reveals them in live interviews.
KARI: From a political operative standpoint, one of the things we always talk about is try to get the whole story out, don’t let it trickle out, drip drip drip.
WU: A lot of people have said that. The thing is that at any stage, I thought I was addressing the issue that was out there. And then, there’s kind of like – oh, and then, there’s this! And my first reaction was, “How is that relevant?” But when the public thinks it’s relevant, it doesn’t matter, you have to address it. I’m not withholding stuff, I am surprised at what this publication can try to link up as connected dots, when I’m hard-pressed to link these dots. And it’s not from an intention of – certainly not being behind the story. It’s kind of like, “You’re kidding, right?” And so, I’ve tried very, very hard to address this.
And then, well you have to wonder what’s going on to feed this process?
CARLA: What’s going on?
WU: I don’t know. You tell me.
CARLA: I would think that you guys would know more than I do about what’s feeding this process. Do you have an inkling that someone is coming after you, gunning for your job?
WU: It’s just not constructive to speculate. In answer to Kari’s question, “how can these layers keep on going?” You know, I’m mystified. From my perspective, we’ve tried to address things at any given stage – whether it’s allegations about alcohol, or drugs, or sexual harassment. I didn’t think a parked car was – you know, all these things.
WU: I don’t think it’s effective to come out and say, “Oh and by the way, you know, I don’t think I have an alcohol problem.” I mean, who in public life ever does that? And then these charges surface. Yeah, I was losing weight! What I’ve learned is, never talk about stopping drinking. I’m trying to lose weight right now, and you know what I do? I have half a glass of wine every week or so, so that people think, “He’s a normal guy!” I do!
At the end of the interview, when we asked if he had anything else to add, he weighed in again about the coverage:
WU: One question that should be asked is, “Am I getting a fair shake?” I’m getting a better shake from TV stations right now than from a certain publication. But it never pays to complain. It never pays to complain. I just lay that out there. I’m getting better TV coverage than I’m getting in print press.
- Intro: Is David Wu fit to be a Congressman? Our exclusive interview.
- Part one: Why did his pollster say that his staff "need to be protected"?
- Part two: What happened that final weekend before election day?
- Part three: Have his former staffers been silenced?
- Part four: Why did so many senior staff leave?
- Part six: Why take mystery pills from a friend?
March 24, 2011 | |