UPDATE: John Andrews weighs in on the controversy on Facebook:
Look at the tense emotion, defensiveness, and anger on Hick’s face in both of these film clips, and think about the extraordinary arrogance of his threatening 9News with loss of access, merely for asking the questions we hope reporters would ask of politicians.
Democrat Governor John Hickenlooper must be feeling stressed these days between the rancorous gun debates and the ridiculous legislation his party is sponsoring on his behalf. That must be why he threatened to cut off access to 9News reporter Jace Larson, who pressed him on his relationship with Jack Ebel the father of Evan Ebel, a suspect in the murder of Department of Corrections chief Tom Clements.
After Larson presses him for the second time on whether Hick’s relationship with Ebel influenced the decision to release Ebel’s son, Hick loses his cool. Here’s the clip:
Larson: I want to give you a chance to answer this question, so please don’t take offense to it. Can you assure Coloradans that even if he donated money to your campaign that you played no role in any of this situation?
Hick: What a stupid question, why would you even ask that question? I just got through telling you, alright, that a) I wouldn’t do it, I told you I wouldn’t do it, so now you’re asking me the question again? I mean, that’s your choice, but you lose your ability to have access when you treat people like that.
This interaction begs the question – are there others whose access has been cut off for simply asking the wrong/right question?
Perhaps Hick isn’t used to media push back like this, so he’s forgotten that it’s not the media’s job to act as his personal message distribution machine, reporting the story simply as Hick views it. Theoretically, the media is there to hold politicians accountable to the people who elected them. This is what Larson was doing when Hick threatened to cut off his access.
Here’s a #protip for Governor Hickenlooper: If you’re going to threaten a reporter, do it off camera.