On Thursday's "Hardball" Chris Matthews accused George W. Bush of delivering "a sucker punch" to Barack Obama in his speech to the Knesset. In the speech Bush warned against appeasing enemies, which Matthews took to be a cheap shot at the Illinois senator's willingness to talk to the leaders of hostile nations like Iran. [audio available here]
Matthews made the "sucker punch" remark on the May 15, "Hardball" in the following question to the "Dallas Morning News'" Wayne Slater:
CHRIS MATTHEWS: Let me ask you while you're up now Wayne, this question of the President. You've written about "Bush's Brain." What was he up to in the Knesset today with that, well you'd have to call it a sucker punch over there. In the Knesset, in Israel, which was, you know, so much to do with the Holocaust, let's be honest. In terms of the world and the way it looks, the necessity of a state of Israel, a Jewish state. And to go in there and basically accuse the Democrats of selling out the Jews of Europe. I mean an amazing charge right there in, in the homeland! Incredible!
Toeing the "Green is Universal,"corporate line, MSNBC's Chris Matthews seemed shocked that anyone would dare question whether climate change was real. During a discussion about John McCain's eco-friendly rhetoric the "Hardball" host was dismayed when conservative radio talk show host Heidi Harris called it a move "to the left," as Matthews decried: "You think climate change is an ideological issue?!"
The following exchange occurred on the May 13 edition of "Hardball:"
In this week's cover piece for "Time" magazine entitled, "Obama: The Game Changer," Joe Klein praised John McCain for having won the nomination by being "a pariah to blowhards like Limbaugh." However the Time magazine columnist advised the Arizona senator to keep it clean as he warned: "If McCain wants to maintain his reputation as a politician more honorable than most, he's going to have to stop the sleaze."
The following is the full excerpt as it appears in the May 19 edition of "Time" magazine:
In his victory speech after the smashing North Carolina results came in, Obama went directly after both McCain and the media. "[McCain's] plan to win in November appears to come from the very same playbook that his side has used time after time in election after election," Obama said. "Yes, we know what's coming. I'm not naive. We've already seen it, the same names and labels they always pin on everyone who doesn't agree with all their ideas, the same efforts to distract us from the issues that affect our lives, by pouncing on every gaffe and association and fake controversy, in the hopes that the media will play along."
NBC's "Today" show added its voice to the chorus of "Get Out Hillary!" chants as its co-host Meredith Vieira asked Clinton's campaign chairman if the New York senator worried that "she could become a spoiler, the longer she stays in the race?"
Vieira attempted different variations of the "When will Hillary get out?" line with Terry McAuliffe on Thursday's "Today" show as she pressed:
VIEIRA: "Is there any light at the end of the tunnel or is it a train headed your way?...But Obama right now has the math, he has the momentum. What does she have left?...There is no way she will carry this to the convention then? Absolutely none?
After an Andrea Mitchell set-up piece that was headlined: "Should Hillary Clinton Drop Out?" Vieira conducted the following interview with McAuliffe on the May 8, "Today" show:
The "Today" show's Ann Curry interviewed Cindy McCain on Thursday morning and got her to promise that the McCain campaign won't go negative. However Curry, herself, repeatedly pressed a point that is sure to be part of a, not-so-quiet, whisper campaign against the Arizona Senator this fall--that he's too old to be President. [audio available here]
ANN CURRY: And she laughed when asked if she has any concerns about his age. You're laughing. Why are you smiling about that?
CINDY MCCAIN: Come spend the day with us.
CURRY: I mean there's never been an older president, at 71. So you've got, this, this is a fair question.
MCCAIN: It is a fair question.
CURRY: And you've seen, as a wife of a senator, what that job does to the men elected to it.
MCCAIN: I would challenge anybody who has a question about his age to come travel with us for a day, on the campaign, because I have to pull off sometimes. He's too much for me. This is about experience. This is a man, who not only has experience, but has the, the, the compass that his life's skills and his life experiences have given him.
CURRY: Can't take away the numbers. 71?
The following is the full interview as it occurred on the May 8, "Today" show:
On the syndicated, "The Chris Matthews Show," Kim Genardo, a political reporter for NBC Raleigh, North Carolina affilate WNCN, predicted that "smart, educated" North Carolina primary voters wouldn't be swayed by Jeremiah Wright but was unsure how "conservative, white, rural voters" would vote as she admitted she's not, "in touch with them."
The following exchange occurred on the May 4, edition of "The Chris Matthews Show":
CHRIS MATTHEWS: Let's talk about North Carolina, Kim. It's where you work. He's had a big lead down there, Barack Obama. Has for weeks now.
KIM GENARDO, WNCN RALEIGH, NORTH CAROLINA: Absolutely.
MATTHEWS: It's narrowing, I hear. Tell me what you hear about that race as it's shaping up. Will it be an up or down on Jeremiah Wright, not Barack?
NBC's "Today" show invited on "Newsweek International" editor Fareed Zakaria to promote his book "The Post-American World," on Monday's show and during his segment the author depicted the United States as a nation in decline as he declared the "era" of "'American exceptionalism' is over."
As examples of America's declining standing in the world the "Newsweek" editor cited such facts as China now having the "Largest ferris wheel in the world," Minneapolis' "Mall of America" no longer being the largest in the world and Macau having surpassed Las Vegas in the size of their casinos.
The following is the full interview as conducted by co-host Meredith Vieira, as it occurred on the May 5, "Today" show:
Chris Matthews invited on former President Jimmy Carter on Tuesday’s "Hardball," and not surprisingly tossed softballs at his former boss and prompted him to weigh-in on Jeremiah Wright as he asked: "Do you think his pastor will be used by people on the right to play the racial card?"
The following exchange occurred on the April 29 edition of MSNBC’s "Hardball":
CHRIS MATTHEWS: Do you think his pastor will be used by people on the right to play the racial card?
JIMMY CARTER: I don't have any doubt. They'll use everything they can by the racial card. That's what the Republicans have done, at least in the South, ever since 1964 when Lyndon Johnson ran against, against Barry Goldwater. And my mother was Lyndon Johnson's campaign, campaign leader in Sumter county. So yeah I think they will use everything they can against Obama if he gets the nomination.
On Tuesday's installment of the "Today" show's "Where in the World is Matt Lauer?" viewers were treated to Lauer strolling by an Amsterdam canal as he talked Dutch politics with a Netherlands' TV host who looked down on America's health care system and the views of "hardcore Republicans" about Holland's legalized prostitution and drugs.
The following exchange occurred on the April 29, "Today" show:
TWAN HUYS, NETHERLANDS TV HOST: But overall if you look at this country it's, it's very rich. Social climate is very good and there's not like, in your country, 40, 50 million people who have no insurance. That's not happening here. It's still, I would say it's, it's a paradise compared to many countries in the world.
MATT LAUER: One of the things that people in the United States immediately think of when they think of Amsterdam, of course is the red light district. How do people here feel about that image abroad?
NBC's Matt Lauer appeared live from Buenos Aires, Argentina as part of the latest installment of the "Today" show's "Where In The World Is Matt Lauer?" ratings gimmick and he went out of his way to assuage viewers that NBC News was doing their part to stay "green" in his travels.
Prompted by an e-mailer's question, read by co-host Meredith Vieira, Lauer assured the "Today" audience that they were going to purchase "carbon off-sets," as he dutifully noted: "We are taking great note of a green side of this trip, as much as humanly possible."
The following exchange occurred on the April 28, "Today" show:
MEREDITH VIEIRA: Listen I've got some e-mail questions that have been coming. And first off is Shaun from Jersey City, New Jersey, and he, who asks, "I have not heard any mention on how Matt Lauer plans to offset his carbon footprint from his upcoming trip around the world. I'm surprised that you have not incorporated a 'green' perspective into this year's trip?" What do you have to say, Matt?
On Wednesday night's "Hardball," Chris Matthews thought he saw racism in two ads targeted against Barack Obama, but when his media panel full of liberal journalists disagreed he back-pedaled a bit.
First up Matthews ran a clip of what he called a "nasty," ad by the North Carolina Republican Party. The Politico's Roger Simon agreed with Matthews that it was "nasty" but said, he wasn’t sure it was "unfair."
Then Matthews ran an ad hitting Obama for opposing the death penalty in Chicago for gang members and claimed:
"It's a giant permission slip to somebody who doesn't want to vote for him to begin with. And it’s also a permission slip for the Republican Party to use him as a target throughout the general election."
However Simon disagreed with Matthews’ implication that it had a racial tinge as he pointed out:
As part of its celebration of Earth Day, NBC's "Today" show invited on actor/environmentalist Ed Norton to promote his National Geographic special on PBS and the "Fight Club" star actually decried America's environmental progress compared to China as he charged the U.S. had to "catch up," to them in the area of banning plastic bags.
ED NORTON: Yeah and when, and when China is ahead of us in banning these things [plastic bags], when other countries around the world are banning these things that we, we need to get in line with that and catch up.
The following is the full segment as it occurred on the April 22, "Today"
MATT LAUER: Two-time Oscar nominee Edward Norton packed a punch with his performance in the film "Fight Club," now he's fighting for a cause, planet Earth. He's narrating National Geographic's series "Strange Days On Planet Earth," which is back for its second installment premiering this week. Edward Norton, good morning, nice to see you.
Rush Limbaugh's "Operation Chaos," has ticked off Chris Matthews. On Wednesday's "Hardball" Matthews insulted Limbaugh's listeners, who are voting in the Democratic primary, as he questioned: "What kind of klutz do you have to be to take orders on how to vote from Rush Limbaugh and to change your party identity so that you can vote against, for somebody to screw the other party?"
The following discussion occurred at the top of the show on the April 16, edition of "Hardball."
JOHN BAER, PHILADELPHIA DAILY NEWS: And we have seen evidence in Pennsylvania of the kind of thing that was rumored earlier in the campaign which is Republicans changing their registration in order to vote. As you know in Pennsylvania you have to be a Democrat to vote in the primary. There has been evidence that, that's happened in Pennsylvania.
CHRIS MATTHEWS: To do what?
BAER: The Republicans have gone over, have gone over--
MATTHEWS: You mean strategic voting?
BAER: Strategic voting and vote for Hillary to get her on the ballot because--
What pundit uttered the following liberal canard that makes it sound like Republicans don't care about poor people?
"He's [John McCain] a conservative. The way he breaks out of it, though, electorally, is to be Teddy Roosevelt, and this is gonna be the toughest thing for his campaign. He's got a group of people around him, and frankly a group, a party that doesn't want the government to do anything to help poor people. And he has to break out of that."
On Wednesday's "Hardball" Chris Matthews repeated his charge that neo-cons believe in enforcing human rights only at the "point of gun." During a discussion on protests following the Olympic torch's path to China, "The Financial Times'," Chrystia Freeland pointed out that "neo-cons" as well as liberals, believed in spreading human rights to which Matthews interjected: "Yeah but at the point of a gun!"
The following exchange occurred on the April 9 edition of "Hardball":
CHRIS MATTHEWS: Let me ask you, is this a bit of an elitist issue Chrystia? In other words, college students, people who are perhaps more interested in international events than it is a trade issue?
Last week Fox News host Geraldo Rivera expressed he would be "proud" to vote for Barack Obama but on Saturday's "Geraldo At Large," he showed he still has some affinity for Hillary Clinton as well. When former Maryland Lieutenant Governor Michael Steele claimed Clinton's Bosnia gaffe was the reason for her drop in a recent poll, Rivera felt for the former First Lady as he sympathized: "I think that, that's awful. I, I feel so bad for her for that."
The following is the full exchange as it occurred on the April 5 edition of "Geraldo At Large":
GERALDO RIVERA: And Governor Steele, you have a situation where this Rasmussen poll, I was pretty shocked when I saw it, now showing Barack Obama, I think for only the second time over 50 percent. He's at 51, Hillary Clinton is at 41. That's a 10-point spread. It looks as if the momentum have, has that people are, are putting the, the Wright controversy behind Obama and now seem to be rallying to him in a way that I, up until now, have not seen. you until now have not seen.
The next time another liberal complains about Fox News being conservatively biased they should be reminded that one of the network's hosts is on record as being "proud" to vote for Barack Obama. On Saturday night's "Geraldo At Large," Geraldo Rivera, during a discussion on Jeremiah Wright, made the following admission: "He is a wonderful candidate and I'd be proud to vote for him in every regard, just about."
The following is the full statement from Rivera as it occured on the March 29 edition of "Geraldo At Large."
GERALDO RIVERA: Here's what I think is, is the problem. I don't think that, that this is past Senator Barack Obama. Although he is a, you know, he's a very, he's everything that he is. He is a wonderful candidate and I'd be proud to vote for him in every regard, just about. I think he's, he's a terrific guy.
Chris Matthews got Barack Obama one-on-one on Wednesday night as part of "Hardball's College Tour," but didn't admit to getting a "thrill" up his leg from the Illinois senator's appearance. However, Matthews did ask Obama questions mostly from the left, like if he was "tough enough to take the heat," from "right wing radio," and warned him the "Republicans will bring [Jeremiah Wright] back."
On the lighter side, Obama didn't directly address Matthews about his leg tingles but did seem to make an allusion to it in the following exchange:
MATTHEWS: Let me ask you about, at any time in this campaign, did you have a chuckle that you just couldn't get rid of? Something weird that happened, that was so crazy that you just went to bed laughing about?
OBAMA: Oh I think that, that happens about once a day. You know? But then I stopped watching cable news.
MATTHEWS: I got another set of cards in the back room.
The following questions from Matthews to Obama occurred on the April 2 edition of "Hardball":
Phil Donahue looked across the film landscape littered with numerous anti-Iraq war box-office failures and decided he needed to add one more to the list and the "Today" show was more than happy to help him promote it. The liberal talk show host appeared on Tuesday's "Today" show with anti-Iraq war veteran/activist Tomas Young to plug what NBC's Ann Curry hailed as "a documentary that Sean Penn has called...part 'Coming Home,' part 'Born on the Fourth of July.'" Co-anchor Meredith Vieira, who conducted the interview, called the film "powerful."
The following is the Curry teaser followed by the full segment as it occurred on the April 1, "Today" show:
On Tuesday's "Today" show, co-anchor Ann Curry traveled with Barack Obama on the campaign trail and mostly threw softball questions to the presidential candidate, questions like who did he prefer: "Beatles or the Rolling Stones?" Curry also tried to broker an Obama-Clinton ticket as she pressed: "They want this. The Democrats want this."
The toughest Curry ever got with the Illinois senator was when she pointed out Obama's lack of business experience as it pertained to his ability to address the economy. However, Curry never hit Obama with a single question on Jeremiah Wright or Tony Rezko but she did find time to show Obama "flirting" with voters. [Audio available here.]
The following is the full interview as it occurred on the April 1, "Today" show:
Proving that no segment, be it even one on food trends, is safe from liberal bias, NBC's "Today" show food editor claimed, in a report on hot new food trends, that global warming was causing Napa Valley wines to become passe. On Thursday's "Today" show co-anchors Ann Curry and Hoda Kotb sipped wine, while Lempert claimed that North Carolina wines were going to be all the rage because Napa Valley wineries were being harmed by "global warming."
The following exchange occurred on the March 27 "Today" show:
Picking up where the broadcast network evening news shows of last night and yesterday's ABC's Good Morning America left off, Tuesday's "Today" show failed to note the party affiliation of Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick. NBC News' Natalie Morales had a total of three opportunities to mention that Kilpatrick was a Democrat but failed to do so in two news briefs and one introduction to a Michelle Kosinski story about the mayor's indictment. The show's graphic department also failed to slap a (D) next to Kilpatrick's name simply labeling Kilpatrick as "Detroit Mayor."
The following segment, as it occurred on the March 25 "Today", was typical of the show's Kilpatrick coverage:
NATALIE MORALES: Today Detroit's mayor is facing arraignment on 12 felony charges including perjury. The charges come amid allegations of sex, lies and text messages. More now from NBC's Michelle Kosinski.
[On screen headline: "Indicted, Detroit Mayor Facing Felony Charges"]
MICHELLE KOSINSKI: The mayor in a mug shot. Kwame Kilpatrick was the youngest mayor Detroit ever elected. He once talked about turning the Motor City around. Now the storm of allegations against him of corruption, cover-ups and sexually explicit text-messages has swirled into an indictment.
Chicago Tribune columnist Clarence Page defended Rev. Jeremiah Wright, on "The Chris Matthews Show" over the weekend, as he claimed tapes existed that put Barack Obama's former pastor in a better light than those clips of him damning America, to which Matthews requested of Page: "Would you get those tapes out?...Let's get the good tapes out."
The following exchange occurred on the March 23 edition of "The Chris Matthews Show:"
CHRIS MATTHEWS: We put it to The Matthews Meter, 12 of our regulars. If Obama is the nominee, will he be defined by race in the fall election? Well, it looks like Obama can still be the transformative candidate on that front. Ten to two, the meter says no, Obama would not be defined by race in the fall. Norah and Clarence, you're both with the 10. You're upbeat on this. We're gonna see beyond color here.
On Tuesday night's "Hardball", Chris Matthews praised the current Democratic frontrunner's speech on race as "Worthy of Abraham Lincoln," and also claimed it bypassed Martin Luther King Jr.'s "I Have A Dream" address as the "best speech ever given on race in this country." Of Barack Obama's speech in Philadelphia today, Matthews went on to declare: "I think this is the kind of speech I think first graders should see, people in the last year of college should see before they go out in the world. This should be, to me, an American tract."
The following comments from Matthews on Obama's speech occurred on the March 18 edition of MSNBC's "Hardball":
CHRIS MATTHEWS OPENING THE SHOW: A divide as American as the Grand Canyon, a speech worthy of Abraham Lincoln. Let's play Hardball!
On Thursday night’s "Hardball," Chris Matthews compared Barack Obama's writing abilities to those of the great American writer Mark Twain. Prompted by Philadelphia radio talk show host Michael Smerconish’s praise of Obama's first book "Dreams From My Father," the "Hardball" host effused: "It's almost like Mark Twain. It's so American, it's so textured."
The following exchange occurred on the March 13 edition of MSNBC’s "Hardball:"
MICHAEL SMERCONISH, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: I think that this argument that he's an empty suit is gonna get tested and proven false. I just finished and have spent all week long, reading to my radio audience excerpts of "Dreams From My Father," Barack Obama's first book. And I'm telling your audience on "Hardball," if you want to know what makes this guy tick forget the grandiose, highfalutin speeches this is the real deal.
On Thursday's "Today" show when co-host Meredith Vieira asked NBC's Washington bureau chief Tim Russert if there would be any "fallout for the Democrats" from the Spitzer scandal, Russert asserted: "Probably not....that story pretty much leaves the front pages."
However, last year, when Senate Republicans David Vitter and Larry Craig were in the news for sex scandals the "Today" show wasn't so quick to let those stories rest and predicted they would have a lingering impact on the party and even conservatism as a whole. As the MRC's Tim Graham reminded NewsBusters readers earlier this week, the "Today" show, ran headlines trumpeting: "Conservative Crisis," and "Craig's Crisis: The Last Straw for the GOP?" Co-host Ann Curry used the scandals to bury Republicans on the August 29, 2007 edition of "Today":
For the second consecutive day NBC's "Today" show refused to identify Eliot Spitzer as a Democrat. In a total of seven Spitzer-related segments on Wednesday’s "Today" show and one interview with Barack Obama, where the scandal was mentioned, not one anchor, reporter, guest, talking head or on-screen graphic mentioned Spitzer's party affiliation. However, following the trend on NBC's Nightly News, the "Today" show graphics department did take time to place an "R" next to Rep. Peter King and New York state Rep. Joe Tedisco.
National correspondent Natalie Morales did note that, "the governor was under lots of pressure from lawmakers on both sides of the aisle" to step down but never bothered to note on which side of the aisle Spitzer stood.
The following opening story from the March 12, "Today" show was typical of the rest of NBC News' Spitzer reports, in its refusal to note his party affiliation.
With four hours of air time to fill NBC's "Today" show devoted a whopping 11 segments to the Eliot Spitzer scandal but not once did any of the show's anchors, reporters, guests, talking heads or even on-screen graphics mention the fact that Spitzer was a Democrat.
"Today" co-anchor Meredith Vieira set the tone when she ignored Spitzer's party affiliation as she opened the March 11, "Today" show: "Good morning, client number nine. New York Governor Eliot Spitzer, a hard-charging moral crusader caught in a federal sting involving a high-price call girl ring." NBC's Matt Lauer, also bypassing the "D" next to Spitzer's name, piped in: "Just when you thought you couldn't be shocked any more we go from Eliot Ness to Eliot Mess. Another high profile politician making a stunning admission."
The following is a breakdown of all the Spitzer-related segments:
Over the weekend, on Fox News' "Geraldo At Large," actor/comedian Richard Belzer declared his hope for Barack Obama to redefine America from the "warmongering," "far right," "intolerant," atmosphere-"raping", poor-"demonizing" nation that it's become under the Bush administration. Prompted by host Rivera to reveal his choice in the 2008 campaign the "Law and Order" star took off on the following anti-Bush/pro-Obama tirade:
We've been redefined for seven years now as a war-mongering, far right, intolerant nation who's raping our own atmosphere and demonizing the poor and letting the banks rob us blind. I think if, any incremental move away from that would be a Godsend. And I think Obama will, at the very least, put the brakes on this madness and in some ways heal it. Another thing, if I may Geraldo, being a man of color, I think the rest of the world, if they see that America elects a man of color I think they'll breathe a big sigh of relief and not think that we're this warmongering, rich white guy country.
The following is the full exchange as it occurred on the March 2, edition of Fox News’ Geraldo At Large:
Barack Obama was clearly off his game on Wednesday's "Today" show as he not only confused David Gregory with Matt Lauer but even worse proclaimed that he "won Michigan." Gregory, substitute hosting for Matt Lauer, did remind Obama that it was he and not Lauer that was conducting the interview, but failed to correct the more egregious error of Obama claiming a victory in a state where he wasn't even on the ballot.
The following is the complete interview as it occurred on the March 4, "Today" show:
DAVID GREGORY: How is Senator Barack Obama feeling about his campaign this morning? He joins us now from San Antonio, Texas. Senator good morning to you.
BARACK OBAMA: Good morning, Matt.
GREGORY: It's, it's David today Senator. The reality--