NBC Political Editor Whines: ObamaCare Critics 'Have Sole Control of the Airwaves'

In the first of a series of tweets sent out Tuesday morning, NBC senior political editor Mark Murray complained: "Why ObamaCare's (un)popularity is probably going to continue: ACA opponents have sole control over the airwaves." In a follow-up tweet, Murray cited the Campaign Media Analysis Group: "Per CMAG's Elizabeth Wilner, number of anti-Obamacare commericials since March 31: 32 Number of pro-Obamacare commercials: 0"

In a third tweet minutes later, Murray explained: "Political scientists believe TV ads have an impact on public opinion when one side has unilateral control over the airwaves." What the NBC journalist failed to acknowledge was the massive pro-ObamaCare push his network and others have engaged in over recent months.

Media Research Center studies have found that the press has routinely buried bad news for the President's health care law while at the same time happily promoting White House PR efforts to sell the unpopular legislation.

While talking to Murray on Tuesday's MSNBC Daily Rundown, fill-in host Luke Russert touted positive ObamaCare projections in a new Congressional Budget Office report, but fretted: "...it's so wonky, it can get lost in the minutia. Those are difficult numbers to explain and a difficult premise to explain, sort of overall reduction of the deficit like that, in a 30-second attack ad when you're getting all this outside money being poured on that the health care law is the destruction of freedom in the United States."

Murray seemed more optimistic at that time, arguing the report would help Democrats "blunt any kind of Republican attacks about skyrocketing premiums or the overall cost to the system." He concluded: "I think this does give Democrats a little bit of a sigh of relief heading into the midterms. Of course we have six months still to go before those midterm elections, but there really isn't the panic involved....Democrats have some good talking points now."


Here is a portion of Russert's April 15 exchange with Murray:

9:17 AM ET

(...)

LUKE RUSSERT: NBC's senior political director [sic] Mark Murray is here with this morning's First Read. And Mark, this was a fascinating development, the CBO report. Democrats pouncing on it, really pumping it up. But one thing that struck me is while it was certainly positive news for Democrats, it can get lost – it's so wonky, it can get lost in the minutia. Those are difficult numbers to explain and a difficult premise to explain, sort of overall reduction of the deficit like that, in a 30-second attack ad when you're getting all this outside money being poured on that the health care law is the destruction of freedom in the United States.

MARK MURRAY [NBC SENIOR POLITICAL EDITOR]: Well, and Luke, you know in this entire health care debate, everyone has their own set of statistics they can point to and say, "Well, I can point to these things to make my case, premiums are skyrocketing." But when you look – if you're a Democrat and you say, "You know, the Congressional Budget Office says that premiums are actually lower than expected."

I think it's important to take a step back here and look at the health care law. It's probably enjoyed its best two weeks since its passage in 2010. You had at the beginning of the month the news that 7.5 million Americans had signed up. Now you have a CBO report to blunt any kind of Republican attacks about skyrocketing premiums or the overall cost to the system.

And so, I think this does give Democrats a little bit of a sigh of relief heading into the midterms. Of course we have six months still to go before those midterm elections, but there really isn't the panic involved. And certainly as you kind of teed up, ahead of that Sylvia Matthews Burwell confirmation hearings, when health care will be thrust back in the news, Democrats have some good talking points now.

(...)

Kyle Drennen
Kyle Drennen
Kyle Drennen is a News Analyst for MRC