PBS Alters Obama 'Lincoln' Quote to Omit Gaffe (Corrected)
(This post has been updated, 12:34pm EDT)
You may have heard/seen President Obama's gaffe during his jobs speech Thursday night where he stated that Abraham Lincoln was the "founder of the Republican Party." The quote, via to the New York Times, was
"We all remember Abraham Lincoln as the leader who saved our Union. Founder of the Republican Party. But in the middle of a civil war, he was also a leader who looked to the future -- a Republican President who mobilized government to build the Transcontinental Railroad -- (applause) -- launch the National Academy of Sciences, set up the first land grant colleges. (Applause.) And leaders of both parties have followed the example he set."
"Honest Abe" was not the founder of the GOP. As Hot Air's Ed Morrissey notes,
Lincoln wasn’t even the GOP’s first Presidential nominee; the first Republican nominee was John C. Fremont in 1856. As the Independence Hall Association recalls, the actual founders of the Republican Party are “Northern leaders such as Horace Greeley, Salmon Chase and Charles Sumner.” Lincoln joined early, as did other anti-slavery Whigs whose party was unraveling at the time, and Lincoln came in second for the 1856 vice-presidential nomination, but he was not a founder of the party. By the time he became a factor in the GOP, the party had already taken a majority in the House of Representatives (1855); it also carried 11 states and 114 electoral votes in the 1856 election that sent Democrat James Buchanan to the White House.
So what does taxpayer-supported PBS do about the president's blunder? They excise it. American Thinker's Tim Birdnow discovered that the network's "Newshour" transcript of President Obama's speech completely omits the Lincoln gaffe:
"We all remember Abraham Lincoln as the leader who saved our Union. But in the middle of a Civil War, he was also a leader who looked to the future - a Republican president who mobilized government to build the transcontinental railroad; launch the National Academy of Sciences; and set up the first land grant colleges. And leaders of both parties have followed the example he set."
And just in case PBS gets any complaints, Birdnow has a screen capture of the altered transcript.
UPDATE: The Washington Examiner's Byron York tells Instapundit that PBS is "lazy, not dishonest":
On the pbs obama transcript thing…I looked at the text of the speech that the white house sent out before it was delivered…and the transcript of the speech that the white house sent out after it was delivered…and he adlibbed the ‘founder of the republican party’ line…it wasn’t in the original text…it seems pretty clear to me that pbs simply posted the text of the speech on its website and went home…and the new york times posted the transcript of the speech, which is what he actually said…pbs was wrong, but i don’t think they altered the transcript.
UPDATE 2: It appears York was correct -- PBS has offered that exact explanation and has updated its transcript to reflect the president's actual remarks.