09/29/2010 01:05 pm ET Updated May 25, 2011

White House Praises MSNBC's Olbermann & Maddow: 'Invaluable'

On the heels of President Obama's criticism of Fox News in an interview with Rolling Stone, his Deputy Press Secretary Bill Burton has gone out of his way to praise rival network MSNBC.

The Upshot's Michael Calderone reports that Burton was talking to a group of reporters on Air Force One when he was asked if Obama felt that people didn't appreciate or recognize his achievements. Burton said the president didn't spend time thinking about it, but that he wants people to know that his administration has "done a lot."

Then Burton praised MSNBC:

"And if you're on the left, if you're somebody like Keith Olbermann or Rachel Maddow or one of the folks who helps to keep our government honest and pushes and prods to make sure that folks are true to progressive values," Burton continued, "then he thinks that those folks provide an invaluable service. But at the same time, we need to focus our energy and our efforts on the choice that Americans have this fall."