The Times "covers" Michelle's star-studded birthday bash. Ms. Stolberg's set-up:
WASHINGTON — President Obama has pledged to use the remainder of his presidency to address income inequality, which he calls “the defining challenge of our time.” This holiday weekend, Mr. Obama had an intimate look at how vast wealth disparities in America have become.
On Monday, Mr. Obama and his family marked the birthday of the civil rights leader the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. with a visit to the D.C. Central Kitchen, where he, Michelle Obama and their daughters, Malia and Sasha, donned aprons and prepared burritos for distribution to local homeless shelters.
On Saturday, the Obamas marked another birthday — Mrs. Obama’s 50th — with a party at the White House, with music by Beyoncé. Guests included entertainment industry A-listers like Stevie Wonder (who also sang), Paul McCartney and Samuel L. Jackson. Those who brought cellphones were asked to check them at the door, presumably to prevent photographs on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.
And her punchline:
The two events — one a very public effort to promote community service, the other a private affair that carried a whiff of celebrity and secrecy — spotlight the often contradictory worlds that modern presidents inhabit.
A "whiff" of celebrity and secrecy? Ms. Stolberg does cite Byron York, who spent a bit more time marshalling a partial guest list:
According to reports in People, the Chicago Tribune, TMZ, US Magazine, and elsewhere, among of the attendees were, in no particular order: Beyonce, Stevie Wonder, Paul McCartney, James Taylor, Smokey Robinson, Gladys Knight, Janelle Monae, Mary J. Blige, Angela Bassett, Courtney Vance, Herbie Hancock, Samuel L. Jackson, Grant Hill, Alonzo Mourning, Ledisi, Emmett Smith, Star Jones, Al Roker, Steve Harvey, Magic Johnson, Billie Jean King, Michael Jordan, Angela Bassett, Jennifer Hudson, Gayle King, Ahmad Rashad, Kal Penn, and Ashley Judd. Among the current and former government officials attending were Joe Biden, Bill and Hillary Clinton, Nancy Pelosi, Susan Rice, Eric Holder, and Kathleen Sebelius.
And to be fair, after warning her readers that she is about to quote a "conservative pundit", Ms. Stolberg delivers the obvious by way of Mr. York:
“Why the secrecy?” wrote Byron York, the conservative pundit, in an opinion article in The Washington Examiner. Perhaps, Mr. York mused, given Mr. Obama’s income inequality agenda, “the White House felt photos of a champagne-soaked, star-studded party would be somewhat off-message.”