Piers Morgan Ignores Libya While Pounding Romney Campaign

While ignoring breaking news in the Obama administration's Libya fiasco on Thursday night, CNN's Piers Morgan dumped on the Romney campaign for a good portion of his show, saying Mitt is "in a hell of a lot of trouble."

Morgan cited four polls in Virginia showing "Obama comfortably ahead," even though one of the polls was actually a tie and another had Obama leading within the margin of error. "Your guy's in a hell of a lot of trouble, isn't he?" Morgan asked GOP pollster Kristen Soltis.

"[I]t seems that ever since the convention, we have seen Obama's fortunes get better and Mitt Romney's get worse," sounded Morgan, who also soured on the Paul Ryan VP pick. He added that "there has been a sense, a rising sense that the appointment of Paul Ryan as the VP pick has turned out to be a big mistake," before citing the New York Times's liberal Nate Silver, who used to write for the Daily Kos, as a source.

Meanwhile, Morgan's colleague Anderson Cooper led his show with important breaking news from Libya that more staffers were being evacuated from the Tripoli embassy. Cooper also investigated the Obama administration's knowledge of the attack and the subsequent investigations that had hit snags.

Morgan made no mention of Libya while Cooper was "keeping the Obama administration honest." Yet Morgan ran two segments spouting liberal talking points about how the Romney campaign is in a "hell of a lot of trouble."

A transcript of the segments, which aired on Piers Morgan Tonight on September 28 at 9:25 p.m. EDT, is as follows:

PIERS MORGAN: Kristen, let me start with you. Your guy's in a hell of a lot of trouble, isn't he? I'm looking at some polls here, it doesn't matter who you believe, Suffolk University, FOX News, Quinnipiac/New York Times/CBS, NBC News/Wall Street Journal, all of them in Virginia, amongst likely voters have Obama comfortably ahead. This is – this is a big problem for Mitt Romney, isn't it?

KRISTEN SOLTIS, Republican pollster: I don't think it's quite as big a problem as you've made it out to be. There was a poll that Suffolk University had out just tonight that had Obama up by two. And so it is true that you've got Obama up in swing states like Virginia by small margins. But there's become this narrative that's really developed over the last week that the race is starting to get away from Governor Romney that I think is not really founded in necessarily good data.

(...)

MORGAN: Well, Charles Blow, I mean, I think one of the reasons people are believing this momentum is that every poll now appears to be widening. I mean that may be an exaggeration. I'm sure we can find one or two which remain the same, but it seems that ever since the convention, we have seen Obama's fortunes get better and Mitt Romney's get worse. And you've got to say, as the tension builds to the first debate, this is make-or-break week, isn't it, for Mitt Romney?

(...)

MORGAN: Yes, but, Kristen Soltis, I mean, it may be coincidence, but since that 47 percent story broke, it was so damaging to Mitt Romney that you just get a sense now that he's got to do something pretty impactive and powerful to get that off the agenda, because the one area that we all believed he had the advantage over Barack Obama was the economy. Suddenly in one fell swoop, you have a guy who has basically written off half the country as a bunch of scrounging victims. And that is not good.

(...)

MORGAN: Charles Blow, there has been a sense, a rising sense that the appointment of Paul Ryan as the VP pick has turned out to be a big mistake, that he should have chosen – I had Nate Silver on last night who had all these wonderful facts and figures. But he basically said look, had he gone for Marco Rubio or somebody and gone for the Latino vote, at least that would have been a demographic he could have pulled in he didn't otherwise have.

With Paul Ryan, it just doesn't seem to be working. He brought him in to win the battle over the economy argument. And ever since that happened, that appointment happened, it's gone the other way on the economy. He's been losing that argument. What do you think of that? Was Paul Ryan, with hindsight, the wrong choice?

(...)

(Video Clip)

(Political Ad)

MITT ROMNEY: There are 47 percent of the people who will vote for the President no matter what, who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has the responsibility to care for them, who believe they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you name it. And they will vote for this President no matter what.

(End Video Clip)

MORGAN: President Obama's new television attack ad due to air in seven key battleground states focusing on Romney's 47 percent comment. Back with me now, my political all-stars, Charles Blow and Kristen Soltis.

Kristen, again, this is a problem, isn't it, for Mitt Romney, because that 47 percent thing is now going to be a huge stick to beat him over the head with for the next 40 days. Also quite interestingly, I thought today, you've got a new video released by the liberal-leaning website Mother Jones, which shows Romney as Bain CEO. Take a look at this. Then I will come back to you.

(Video Clip)

ROMNEY: Bain Capital is an investment partnership which was formed to invest in startup companies and ongoing companies, then to take an active hand in managing them, and hopefully, five to eight years later, to harvest them at a significant profit.

(End Video Clip)

MORGAN: Now Mitt Romney's campaign had this to say about this video, "In addition to starting up new businesses, Mitt Romney helped build Bain Capital by turning around broken companies, creating and saving thousands of jobs. The problem today is President Obama hasn't been able to turn around the economy in the same way."

Here's the problem for Mitt Romney, though, Kristen, which is that these were two areas, really, the economy and his record at Bain, that were supposed to be the strong points for the Romney campaign. And they're now being used as his vulnerabilities, weak points. And unless he can turn this around – you can't blame the Obama campaign. They are ramping this up now, and attacking him on the very things he thought that he was going to win on.

(...)

MORGAN: The problem for him is it plays to – and Kristen, I'd like to come back to you on this – it plays to this sense there's always been about Mitt Romney that he's too rich, too detached. With that comes a kind of arrogance and disconnect from the average American. These two things, his Bain record and the taxes issue and the 47 percent, it all just morphs into a picture that he's just not one of them.
 

Matt Hadro
Matt Hadro
Matt Hadro was a News Analyst for the Media Research Center's News Analysis Division from 2010 through early 2014