The Onion? Oh Yeah!

Sherwood said he was granted full access to the candidate, and was permitted by
chief strategist David Axelrod to ask any question he desired—an opportunity the
reporter used to lob the easiest softballs at Obama yet, ranging from how happy
he felt when he met his wife to what songs are currently on his iPod playlist.
Sherwood was also fearless in his effort to paint the candidate as someone who
is "surprisingly down to earth," a phrase that is used a total of 26 times
throughout the feature.
"If we were going to get the story we wanted, it was
my responsibility as a journalist to ask the really tough questions to his two
young daughters," said Sherwood, who grilled Malia and Sasha Obama, 9 and 7,
about whether they were "proud of [their] daddy." "I also had to capitalize on
every opportunity to compare the story of Obama's upbringing and rise to power
to that of Martin Luther King, Jr.'s and John F. Kennedy's, no matter how
suspect those parallels really are."
According to the Time reporter, work on
the profile was often harder than he had anticipated, with Obama at times
dodging questions about whether or not he played a musical instrument, and about
what Monopoly piece he thought best represented his candidacy and why.
"Situations like these are when you have to get on the phone and talk, not
only to his mother, but to his aunt, his uncle, a Boy Scout leader, or maybe
even one of his camp counselors growing up," Sherwood said. "And if they don't
return your call, you turn to Sunday school teachers and former
babysitters—anyone who is willing to go on record and say that Barack Obama was
a really good kid who was destined for great things."
Added Sherwood, "It's
all about getting the factoids out in the open."
Readers have so far
responded favorably to the piece, with sales of the latest issue of Time nearly
tripling that of an issue last month featuring a 36-page exposé that tore apart
and vilified former candidate Hillary Clinton's health-care plan.
"I'm not
quite sure how he intends to turn around the economy or get us out of Iraq,"
said California resident Geoff Mills, an ardent Obama supporter who read the
Time story. "But any man who prefers his steak cooked medium-rare has my vote."

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