{{show_title_date || "Sperling-Woodward battle has the Beltway buzzing, 2/27/13, 7:00 PM ET"}}

Woodward/White House dust-up hits DC


Thursday on NOW with Alex Wagner, the panel, Alex and her guests tried to make sense of the latest dust-up between the White House and famed Washington Post journalist Bob Woodward.

“Obviously he’s got a great body of work behind him and that brings him a lot of respect, but honestly, he’s making himself look foolish,” msnbc.com editor Richard Wolffe said. “He’s hyping up this email which hurts his credibility and he’s got the wrong end of the stick about the sequester.”

The spat began with Woodward claiming in an op-ed over the weekend that president Obama had come up with the original idea of the sequester and had then “moved the goalposts” by saying any deal to avert it must consist of revenues as well as spending cuts.

The op-ed has been touted by Republicans as evidence that the White House is at fault for the current stalemate.

“I cannot tell you how how many times it was sent to me by Republican operatives, saying ‘see I told you so,’” Wagner noted.

The story took another turn when Woodward said he had been threatened by a White House official who urged him not to publish it, or he might “regret it.”

Politico later revealed–and NBC News confirmed–that the White House official was economic adviser Gene Sperling. Politico published the email exchange between the two men.

The friendly tone of the emails has led many on both sides of the political spectrum to call into question Woodward’s use of the word “threat.”

The sequester is due to go into effect at midnight EST Friday night.