The extensive profile of Barack Obama by Vanity Fair‘s Michael Lewis doesn’t have all best parts of Lewis’ one-on-ones with the president. Lewis said during a discussion with VF Editor Graydon Carter last night that the White House had quote approval of what he could use for the piece.
That means the White House was able to strip the parts of Lewis’ interviews that were deemed not-for-use after they had already taken place.
From the New York Times:
Mr. Lewis said that ultimately the White House disallowed very little of what he asked to use. And he described having access to the president that was unusually unfettered. About 95 percent of what he witnessed was on the record, he said. …
Mr. Lewis said there was one particularly moving exchange with the president that he wished he could have described in greater detail. But the White House nixed the idea, perhaps wary of having the commander in chief described as in tears.
Mr. Lewis declined to delve into too much detail because he said he did not want to violate the ground rules he agreed to, but he did offer that the president explained to him how the job exacts a heavy emotional toll. The president told Mr. Lewis how one evening after a particularly trying day, he sat down to watch a movie and surprised himself by suddenly tearing up.