NBC Highlights 'Life-Long Republican' Caucusing for Obama, But...

On Wednesday's NBC Nightly News, Andrea Mitchell showcased “a lifelong Republican, who twice voted for George Bush, now canvassing for Obama” as a “precinct captain” in Iowa. In an interview two months ago, however, Monica Green listed Ronald Reagan as the last Republican President with whom she “identified” and, asked whether she'd vote for Reagan if he were running against Barack Obama today, she equivocated as she implied Reagan was too anti-communist: “You mean if he was running against Obama today? Oh my goodness. That's a good question...His views on communism were probably not the view I would appreciate today. I've got a much more global perspective today, and Obama touches that.”

Mitchell and NBC producers hardly stumbled upon Green by accident since the official Barack Obama campaign site features a video of Green as one of its “Republicans for Barack.” In the NBC story, Mitchell cued up Green to explain how she rationalizes to her kids her party change: “In the beginning, they would call me and say, 'Who are you? You raised us to be Republicans. I don't understand.' And I just keep saying, 'Look at the problems in the world, and look at who you think is going to be able to solve these problems?'”

The MRC's Brad Wilmouth corrected the closed-captioning against the video to provide this transcript of the relevant portion of Mitchell's story, from Des Moines, on the January 2 NBC Nightly News:
ANDREA MITCHELL: Barack Obama is counting on independents, according to NBC's Lee Cowan.

LEE COWAN: The Obama campaign says they are energized not only by the size of the crowds, but also their enthusiasm. And they point out that if there are so many people who say that they're first-time caucus goers that are turning out at midnight rallies and early in the morning in this bitter cold, that's a pretty good indication of their commitment.

MITCHELL: All the candidates are relying on ground troops, precinct captains like Monica Green, a lifelong Republican, who twice voted for George Bush, now canvassing for Obama.

WOMAN, RESPONDING TO OBAMA CAPTAIN MONICA GREEN: We haven't fully decided. I think my husband will probably be John Edwards, and I am split, either Edwards or Obama.

MITCHELL, TO GREEN: What do your kids say to you?

MONICA GREEN, IOWA PRECINCT CAPTAIN: In the beginning, they would call me and say, "Who are you? You raised us to be Republicans. I don't understand." And I just keep saying, "Look at the problems in the world, and look at who you think is going to be able to solve these problems?"
From an interview in early November with Campaigns & Elections magazine:
C&E: Who were some Republicans with whom you have identified?

Green: "I thought Reagan was a strong president...I was totally in support of Reagan. He's probably the last one."

C&E: If the 1980 Reagan were running today, would you vote for him?

Green: "You mean if he was running against Obama today? Oh my goodness. That's a good question...His views on Communism were probably not the view I would appreciate today. I've got a much more global perspective today, and Obama touches that."

The link to the Campaign & Elections posting no longer works, but it's posted on the “Seattle for Barack Obama” blog. It's also highlighted on the “Think on These Things Research” blog, which touts: “Commentary, and News on the 2008 Presidential Election with a Pro-Obama Slant.”

For more stories like this, see our Covert Liberal Activists category. 

Brent Baker
Brent Baker
Brent Baker is the Steven P.J. Wood Senior Fellow and VP for Research and Publications at the Media Research Center