On her 12 p.m. ET hour MSNBC show on Monday, host Andrea Mitchell teed up correspondent Rehema Ellis to blast New Jersey Governor Chris Christie over the blizzard clean-up effort in the state: “Tell us about the clean-up, because Rehema, we've already seen that Chris Christie, the governor, flew out early yesterday saying all was fine there. How is it in New Jersey?”
Kyle Drennen is the Media Research Center's Senior News Analyst and a Contributing Editor to NewsBusters. He is the co-author of the 2014 Media Reality Check study, TV News Blacks Out This Year’s Bad Election News for Democrats.
In 2009, he captured the infamous comment from then-Newsweek editor Evan Thomas comparing President Obama to God. Later that same year, he exposed for MSNBC deceptively editing video footage of a Tea Party rally to conceal the racial identity of an African American participant, forcing the liberal network to respond to criticism and explain its actions.
His media analysis has been cited by nationally syndicated radio hosts Rush Limbaugh and Mark Levin, as well as media outlets including Fox News, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal’s WSJ.com, The Washington Times, Washington Examiner, Politico, National Review, among others.
Kyle joined the MRC in 2007 after graduating from Providence College with a Bachelor of Arts degree in history and political science. He lives in Northern Virginia and can be contacted via email at email@example.com.
On Monday, all three network morning shows hyped the possibility of former New York City mayor and liberal activist Michael Bloomberg entering the 2016 presidential race. However, only NBC’s Today made any mention of Bloomberg’s nationwide anti-gun crusade as a stumbling block for him.
On Friday, not only did CBS This Morning skip any coverage of the annual March for Life in Washington D.C., the morning show actually attacked one of the event’s keynote speakers, Republican presidential candidate Carly Fiorina, for her “anti-abortion” views. In a news brief at the top of the 7:30 a.m. ET hour, co-host Norah O’Donnell touted: “Our Des Moines affiliate, KCCI, reports on accusations Carly Fiorina used preschoolers as props during an anti-abortion speech.”
In an interview with Texas Senator Ted Cruz on ABC’s Good Morning America on Friday, co-host George Stephanopoulos demanded the GOP presidential candidate respond to attacks from former Senator Bob Dole: “But how about the argument he is making? I mean, he repeated that ‘No one likes Ted Cruz,’ but he also said he believes your candidacy, if you’re the nominee, is going to cause ‘cataclysmic losses’ for Republicans.”
In an interview with Duck Dynasty stars Jep and Jessica Robertson on Thursday’s Good Morning America, correspondent Jesse Palmer suggested that family patriarch Phil Robertson might be unhappy about the couple recently adopting an African American baby: “I have to ask you, obviously your father got in some hot water back in 2013. He made some inflammatory racial remarks. What's his reaction been to this adoption and is he welcoming of the brand-new addition?”
On Thursday, all three network morning shows were eager to hype former senator and Republican presidential nominee Bob Dole viciously attacking Texas Senator Ted Cruz. On ABC’s Good Morning America, correspondent Tom Llamas proclaimed: “This morning, more and more prominent Republicans turning their backs on Senator Ted Cruz. First Iowa's governor, and now, former Republican presidential nominee Bob Dole, telling the New York Times Cruz is a, quote, “extremist” and ‘nobody likes him.’”
On CBS’s Late Late Show on Tuesday – aired early Wednesday morning – host James Corden ridiculed President Obama for abandoning the job of commander-in-chief in favor of doing a series of appearances on YouTube and reality TV shows: “...there is one guy who's definitely not interested in being the President of the United States, and that's the President of the United States, Barack Obama, who, I don't know if you've noticed, seems to totally have checked out recently.”
On Wednesday, NBC’s Today completely ignored a major development in Hillary Clinton’s e-mail scandal, while CBS This Morning and ABC’s Good Morning America only offered seconds of coverage to the news. After the story broke on Tuesday that the intelligence community’s inspector general found several e-mails sent through the former Secretary of State’s private server contained some of the nation’s most classified secrets, all three broadcast networks censored the revelation on the evening newscasts.
On Tuesday’s CBS This Morning, co-host Charlie Rose led off the broadcast by triumphantly announcing: “Protesters demand Michigan's governor resign over a toxic war crisis. He admits it is his Hurricane Katrina."
Appearing on Tuesday’s NBC Today to promote her new documentary series on Netflix, left-wing comedian and talk show host Chelsea Handler highlighted the topic of one episode: “...you think you know about racism and then you delve into it and you kind of realize how little you do know and then how embarrassed you are about how little you know. And how embarrassing people in this country are when you talk to them.”
On Monday, CBS This Morning devoted a nearly three-minute-long report to Democratic presidential candidates and left-wing activists denouncing Michigan’s Republican Governor Rick Snyder over the Flint water crisis. Correspondent Adrianna Diaz began the one-sided segment by declaring: “Frustration over Flint's tainted water supply is spilling over.” A soundbite followed of Jesse Jackson telling a group of protesters: “Flint is now a crime scene.”
On Monday’s NBC Today, chief foreign correspondent Richard Engel reported live from Tehran on the lifting of sanctions on Iran and sounded like an anchor on Iranian state television as he touted the authoritarian regime celebrating the development: “Well, this is an extraordinary time to be here in Tehran. The mood is one of expectation and optimism. People are encouraged by the deal. They think they got the better half of the deal, and they are looking forward to a better economy.”
Appearing on Friday’s NBC Today, Meet the Press moderator Chuck Todd hyped the birther attacks on Ted Cruz as damaging to the Texas Senator’s campaign: “...it has unnerved Cruz. You saw him. What got him to attack Trump? He avoided it for six months....This has rattled him. We're now on day seven where every day he has had to answer questions about this.”
Hours before the first Republican debate of 2016 on Thursday, NBC’s Today and ABC’s Good Morning America both eagerly hyped a report in The New York Times that Ted Cruz failed to disclose a loan from Goldman Sachs to help fund his 2012 Senate campaign.
In an interview conducted with House Speaker Paul Ryan on Tuesday and aired on Wednesday’s NBC Today, co-host Matt Lauer derided Republican attempts to repeal ObamaCare: “The House and the Senate last week passed a bill that would have repealed the Affordable Care Act. I think it's the 62nd time that's happened, and obviously the President vetoed it. Did you put out what you consider to be any kind of alternative?”
On Wednesday, all three network morning shows offered rave reviews of President Obama’s final State of the Union address, applauding the “passionate defense of his record” and his repeated attacks on Republicans. Leading off NBC’s Today, co-host Matt Lauer announced: “Return to hope and change....President Obama uses his last State of the Union address to tout his accomplishments, set some lofty goals, and take a veiled shot at Donald Trump.”
Despite most of South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley’s response to the State of the Union being a takedown of President Obama, during interviews with the Republican on Wednesday, NBC’s Today and CBS This Morning focused exclusively on her warning against the “angriest voices” in the GOP.
During Tuesday’s fawning Today show special at the White House, President Obama’s chief digital officer Jason Goldman appeared on the broadcast and congratulated the hosts for serving as a propaganda tool for the administration: “I think you guys do this really well with the Today show. You know, the stuff you've been doing this morning, showing stuff behind the scenes is really great...and I think it’s the kind of thing that people look for.”
During a lengthy interview with President Obama conducted on Monday and aired on Tuesday’s NBC Today, co-host Matt Lauer worried about Republican presidential candidates playing on the “fear” of the American people: “That fear, though, is still incredibly real....And in some ways, it's driving the current presidential campaign. You've got a guy like Donald Trump and others who have recognized and identified that fear....And in some ways, they’re running on it.”
On Tuesday’s NBC Today – aired live from the White House to promote President Obama’s final State of the Union – the morning shows hosts could not contain their glee at being there. At the top of the show, co-host Savannah Guthrie proclaimed: “And a morning show first....an unprecedented morning live at the White House....a moment of history for us, for this show, and where so much history has been made.”