On Fox News’ The Five last night, Fox host Andrew Napolitano viewed Obama’s trip as opportunistic and a “clever” media trick. Had Obama called Congress back from recess or “given advice about what to do with the market, he would’ve exercised some leadership,” he said. Instead, Obama “segued into something we all agree on, which is remorse and sorrow over the loss of the SEALs in Afghanistan.” To Napolitano, “that was a very clever way of trying to get the economy off the front page.”
OK, first off: wow. Second, I'm not sure how honoring those fallen soldiers in an event that was closed to media really works in terms of trying to get media attention. Usually, barring the media from an event tends to get less attention than if you were to invite them.
But on the other hand, perhaps Napolitano is just speaking from his own personal instincts on whether or not it's all right to honor the troops. It's certainly true that President George W. Bush studiously avoided bringing attention to any fallen soldiers: It was probably because he was so focused on the economy.