Meet progressive blogger Oliver Willis, who met with Obama Wednesday

Jonathan Strong Jonathan Strong, 27, is a reporter for the Daily Caller covering Congress. Previously, he was a reporter for Inside EPA where he wrote about environmental regulation in great detail, and before that a staffer for Rep. Dan Lungren (R-CA). Strong graduated from Wheaton College (IL) with a degree in political science in 2006. He is a huge fan of and season ticket holder to the Washington Capitals hockey team. Strong and his wife reside in Arlington.
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When President Obama hosted five liberal bloggers for a brief roundtable discussion Wednesday, he took two questions from blogger and Media Matters employee Oliver Willis, who authors the eponymous OliverWillis.com

Willis asked if Obama considered himself a “progressive.” Obama said he was, but that so was Abraham Lincoln, a Republican, because he held a “core belief” that “America prospers not just when a few people do well but when everybody has the chance to do well.”

Nowadays, though, Obama said, holding those views means “you’re considered some wild-eyed radical. That’s a shift, and not a good shift, in terms of our public debate.”

Notably, in decrying the acrimony of public debate to Willis, Obama was speaking to someone who views his ideological opponents as “dumb,” “rubes,” and “nutjobs” – enemies who are too stupid to know the difference.

In particular, Willis seems to attack women candidates like Sarah Palin and Hillary Clinton with vehemence.

In regards to Palin, Willis wrote recently that the media is biased towards conservatives because it won’t just come out and say that Sarah Palin is “stupid.”

Willis has called Palin “America’s Idiot,” criticized her for “whining” and repeatedly characterized her media appearances and speaking engagements as making riches off of conservative “rubes.”

Willis did charitably allow that when a man threw tomatoes at Palin, it was “wrong.”

In Willis’ world, Christine O’Donnell is a “nutjob” and Michele Bachmann is a “right-wing space cadet.”

Though Willis typically aims at conservative targets, when Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was locked in a divisive primary battle with President Obama during the 2008 campaign, Willis, who supported Obama, threw many of his rhetorical bombs at her.

Perhaps most notably, Willis called her “Hillary White Power Clinton” when she referred to voters uncomfortable voting for Obama in the Democratic primaries as “White Americans.”

“Even professional haters like Pat Buchanan and his ilk aren’t so balls-out about racism,” Willis wrote, “we can’t have someone spouting Klan-style talking points on the ticket.”

(In regards to Nazi references, Willis also blasted a Clinton surrogate for publishing an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal; “To the modern progressive, he may as well be making his case in The Hitler Times,” he wrote.)

Willis also referred to Clinton as “Bush in a pantsuit” and “fracking crazy.” When former Democratic vice presidential candidate Geraldine Ferraro said she would not support Obama, Willis said she was part of the “racist dumbass vote.”

Needless to say, Willis has rubbed some the wrong way with all of his name-calling. One prominent blogger who requested anonymity said Willis has “real women’s issues.”

So it is at least interesting to note that Willis hosts an archive of images verging on pornography (NSFW) at his website.

The photos typically show women in lingerie or bikinis. One such page is headlined, “[Pornstars] Sandee Westgate & Puma Swede Play” (NSFW). Another is titled “Briana Love Kneels Down” (NSFW).

Reached by e-mail, Willis said, “I aggregate all kinds of news on my blog, have done so for years.”