New York Times Spins for Obama in the Heart of Texas

New York Times White House reporters Jackie Calmes and Jennifer Steinhauer were with Obama on the money-raising trail in Texas and did their usual spin job for the partisan, combative president in Wednesday’s “Obama Pitches Jobs Bill And Appeals to Donors.”

President Obama on Tuesday combined fund-raising and campaigning for his jobs bill in the home state of the Republican presidential candidate Rick Perry and the Congressional district of a House Republican leader, and he did not shy away from telling donors that they and Texas’ oil companies should pay more taxes for the nation’s good.

....

The president, to laughter, said Republicans would resist his plans “if I took their party platform and proposed it” because they say they do not want to give him a victory.

“Give me a win? Give me a break,” he said, bringing the enthusiastic and diverse crowd of more than 1,000 to its feet. “This is not about giving Democrats or Republicans a win. This is about giving people who are hurting a win. This is about giving small-business owners a win, and entrepreneurs a win, and students a win, and working families a win.  This is about giving America a win.”

Again, Calmes (pictured above) proved herself averse to the simple term “raise taxes,” preferring the less-damaging-for-Democrats term“raise revenues.”

The trip was the latest example of the president’s new strategy of confronting Republicans directly, after nearly a year in which they have blocked his efforts to raise more revenues from the wealthy and corporations both to reduce long-term deficits and, in the short term, to offset the cost of additional spending and tax cuts to spur the economy.

There’s some typical Times labeling imbalance: Missouri is a “conservative state,” but California and New York aren’t “liberal states,” merely “Democratic-leaning states.”

Mr. Obama’s trip to Texas and then to Missouri was unusual in that both are conservative states he did not win in 2008, and is not expected to win in 2012. The president’s trip showed that even in Republican-friendly states he can scoop up campaign dollars. Texas ranks fourth among the states as a source of the $33.4 million that Mr. Obama raised through the first half of this year for the 2012 campaign cycle and for the Democratic National Committee -- behind the Democratic-leaning states of California, New York and Illinois.

While plugging Obama’s success in raising money, the paper failed to cite more substantive, less sunny indicators of his political future, like the fact that since late May, more people disapprove of his job performance than approve, according to Gallup’s daily tracking poll.

Clay Waters
Clay Waters
Clay Waters was director of Times Watch, a former project of the Media Research Center.