100-Days Press Conference: Reaction Roundup

President Obama's primetime press conference tonight--on his 100th day in office--has the political news world abuzz with liveblogs, Twittering, and even some traditional news and commentary. Commentators seem to like his style, and consensus is that his comments on Chrysler will elicit cheers from Detroit. The other major storyline--his response to Jake Tapper's question on whether the Bush administration authorized torture--drew responses split along partisan/ideological lines.

Here's a roundup of highlights:

On ABC News's live Twittering, Terry Moran gave Obama high marks for the press conference, and the list of news outlets he called on, as a piece of communications strategy: "BET, Telemundo, the Detroit News--and a blogger still to come, I'll bet. Why did Bush never do this? It's smart,reaches different audiences."

At Politico's liveblog, Jonathan Martin says Obama's proclaimed optimism about Chrysler's restructuring should play well in Detroit: "That sound you here are the cheers coming from Motown."

At The Washington Post's liveblog, Zachary Goldfarb saw some contradiction in what Obama said he was "humbled" by:

Obama said he was "humbled" he could not as president simply tell what bankers what to do, suggesting he needed the support of other branches of government.

But at times the administration has taken steps that departed from congressional wishes. For example, the government has structured several of its programs to spur financial recovery in ways that allow participants to escape executive compensation requirements established by Congress in appropriating $700 billion to bail out the financial sector.

The Associated Press's Calvin Woodward, fact-checking the president's performance, took issue with Obama's "that wasn't me" comment about the budget deficit that he inherited: "It actually was partly him -- and the other Democrats controlling Congress the previous two years -- who shaped the latest in a string of precipitously out-of-balance budgets."

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Mother Jones's Kevin Drum suggests Obama revealed that waterboarding yielded critical information: "Obama has obviously seen all the internal reports by now, and he's carefully not saying that waterboarding didn't work.  This suggests that it may indeed have produced useful information."

Gateway Pundit thought Obama dodged Jake Tapper's question about whether the Bush administration, in Obama's opinion, authorized torture: "Obama did not answer the question directly about the Bush Administration. He used Great Britain in World War II as an example of a country that did not torture."

At MyDD's liveblog, Jonathan Singer likes the ideology of Obama's torture response: "Obama nicely swats down Cheney's argument vis a vis torture, offered up by CBS Radio -- memos don't address the more fundamental questions of whether torture actually makes us safer on the whole and whether information could have been obtained otherwise."

CNN's viewers, voting online, gave Obama a B+ on the event. "The White House gotta be pleased with that," Anderson Cooper said. Fareed Zakaria, meanwhile, said Obama is comfortable with foreign policy questions but that he lost an opportunity to say something nice about Mexico and its handling of swine flu.

TalkLeft's Jeralyn liked Obama's off-the-cuff style in answering a question about what had elicited various emotions from him as president: "President Obama is on TV talking about his first 100 days. I just tuned in. He's answering a question, off the cuff, going through a list of emotions from surprise to enchanted to humble. It's refreshing to see him speak without a teleprompter."

Dan Hawkins of Right Wing News didn't think the whole affair was too significant: "Just noticed people talking about Obama's press conference on Twitter and figured I should liveblog it."...and an interesting point about Obama's response on Iraq: "Does violence in Iraq affect US plans for withdrawal? He's basically giving the Bush "stay the course" answer. We need to settle oil revenues, relationship, boundaries, political reconiciliation, etc, etc. What's the dif between him and Bush on this?"