Reporter interrupts Obama in rare Rose Garden disruption

WASHINGTON Fri Jun 15, 2012 4:27pm EDT

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A reporter caused an unusual disruption at the White House on Friday when he interrupted President Barack Obama mid-sentence while making a statement, challenging his decision to give young illegal immigrants a chance to stay in the United States.

"Why do you favor foreigners over American workers?" the man, who later identified himself as Neil Munro from The Daily Caller website, yelled out from among the reporters listening to Obama's remarks in the White House Rose Garden, which were televised live.

Obama, clearly irritated by the disruption, stopped reading from his statement and said, "It's not time for questions, sir." Munro later interrupted him again, causing Obama to say: "I didn't ask for an argument. I'm answering your question."

The White House press corps frequently shouts questions to the president after he reads prepared statements, but it is very rare for a journalist to interrupt him, particularly in formal settings such as the Rose Garden or the Oval Office.

In a statement on the Daily Caller site, Editor-In-Chief Tucker Carlson defended Munro, saying, "A reporter's job is to ask questions and get answers.

"Our job is to find out what the federal government is up to. Politicians often don't want to tell us. A good reporter gets the story. We're proud of Neil Munro."

The Daily Caller was founded by Carlson, a conservative commentator, and Neil Patel, who was an adviser to former Vice President Dick Cheney.

(Reporting By Laura MacInnis; Editing by Peter Cooney)

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