Maddow Downplays Arrest of Leland Yee While Jon Stewart Pounces

No wonder so many people, especially young Americans, get their news from Jon Stewart on "The Daily Show." They've learned from long experience that they can't get it from places such as "The Rachel Maddow Show" on MSNBC that proudly and repeatedly tout themselves as "news" shows.

While attempting to show how balanced she is, Maddow on March 27 responded on a flurry of Democrat scandals so numerous that even MSNBC could not ignore them. But predictably for Maddow, she soft-pedaled what was arguably the most serious of the bunch -- the alleged attempt by California state senator Leland Yee to obtain shoulder-fired missiles and other heavy weaponry from Filipino jihadists in exchange for campaign cash. (Video after the jump)

Maddow's description of the allegations against Yee were curiously vague. Yee was one of more than two dozen people arrested on March 26 across California, she said, "in a huge corruption, gun-running, racketeering, drug trafficking sting, and at least one accusation of murder for hire."

Then Maddow said this about Yee's arrest --

Although all these 26 suspects were arraigned today on a wide array of charges, Senator Lee (uh, isn't his name Yee ...?) specifically was charged with public corruption, with soliciting funds from what turned out to be undercover FBI operatives, the senator allegedly offering to help those operatives in the state capital in Sacramento in exchange for them giving him campaign cash.

Uh, "help" them do what, Rachel? Stewart, to his credit, was more than willing to go where Maddow dared not venture --

STEWART: But wanting to help women stay fresh is not the worst thing a Democratic politician has done lately.

NEWS REPORT: The California lawmaker who pushed for gun control has been arrested in a gun trafficking scheme. State senator Leland Yee is fighting those charges.

STEWART: Now we're talking! Trying to stop gun trafficking while trafficking guns. That's what's known in the business as a win-win! What are we talking about, AKs? Saturday Night Specials? Sunday Morning Leftovers? Snub-Nose, that Dirty Harry gun he called Sally? I don't know the names of guns at all.

SECOND NEWS REPORT (with photo shown of soldier holding huge shoulder-fired missile launcher): The feds say Yee discussed the possibility of acquiring weapons, including shoulder-fired missiles, from the Philippines.

STEWART (mock alarmed, pointing toward photo of soldier with missile launcher): What the f*** is that thing?! Is that guy, is that guy shooting something or replacing a water main? What is that?! I realize gun runners don't do the background checks, but I hope the first question Yee asked him is, why are you trying to blow up the moon?!

Ahhh, that explains Maddow's unwillingness to delve too deeply into the charges against state senator "Lee" -- his alleged devotion to gun control is too simply painful for Maddow to mention, given the circumstances of his sudden notoriety. And why in all likelihood Yee's name will never be misstated again on Maddow's show or anywhere else on MSNBC.

Jack Coleman
Jack Coleman
Ex-liberal from People's Republic of Massachusetts