Attempting to dismsiss negative reports about Obama's White House, CNN's Soledad O'Brien completely mangled and fumbled key facts on Monday's Starting Point. O'Brien had claimed that her own network reported on a White House event in 2009 – except that key event details were missing from the CNN reports at the time.
The claims that O'Brien dismissed as baseless were made by New York Times reporter Jodi Kantor in her new book "The Obamas." Kantor had written that during the recession in 2009, the White House hosted a Halloween "Alice in Wonderland" themed tea party with celebrity donors – but was careful not to get the word out about the lavish event due to the hard economic times.
The media has an "antipathy" toward Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum, asserted Dana Milbank of the Washington Post on CNN's Reliable Sources on Sunday. Given the media's treatment of Santorum after his Iowa success, that would be safe to acknowledge.
Milbank noted that the ill-will stems from Santorum's social-conservatism, adding that "liberal pundits and I think the media in general have a particular antipathy towards Rick Santorum because of the cultural differences." When asked why the media were focusing on his social beliefs when voters are concerned about the economy, Milbank lamely responded that "Whenever we focus on the economy, it's terribly boring." [Video below the break.]
On the campaign trail, Republican candidate Rick Santorum blurted out a word that sounded like "black" and was widely-criticized for making a generalization that black citizens rely on welfare. Though the transcript of the remark is not entirely certain, CNN's Anderson Cooper emphasized the comment anyway with a "Keeping Them Honest" report on his Thursday show.
The title "Keeping Them Honest" implies that the subject is being dishonest, but Cooper admitted that he was grilling Santorum for "what he appears to be saying." [Video below the break. Click here for audio.]
CBS's Early Show repeatedly hit GOP candidate Newt Gingrich on Friday over his comments on African-Americans and food stamps. The network played the quote for African-American Congressman Tim Scott (R-S.C.) and engaged Gingrich over the context, even accusing him of trying to start a class war.
"You've accused President Obama of trying to start a class war," co-host Nancy Cordes told Gingrich in an interview at the bottom of the 7 a.m. hour. "Aren't you doing the same thing?" she pressed him. [Video below the break.]
Determined to vet up-and-coming GOP candidate Rick Santorum, CNN's Gary Tuchmann chose Wednesday to pull a number of liberal attacks on the candidate's social beliefs and call it a report. Apparently for CNN, "scrutiny" entails digging up liberal talking points instead of studying a candidate's voting record and economic and foreign policy plans.
Tuchman attested on Anderson Cooper 360 that "we can already tell you quite a bit about his vision for this country," adding that Santorum "has established a reputation as a conservative in every sense of the word." He then descended into implying that Santorum was a racist and a homophobe. [Video below the break.]
In a Wednesday interview with up-and-coming GOP candidate Rick Santorum, CNN's John King dug up a "controversial" 2003 interview Santorum had with the AP and then proceeded to misquote him on the matter of homosexuality.
The AP reporter who had then questioned Santorum was Lara Lakes Jordan – whose husband Jim Jordan managed John Kerry's presidential campaign later that year. King never mentioned any possibility of a conflict of interest there, but used Santorum's "controversial" answer on the question of homosexuality as an example of what Democrats hail as his "extreme" conservatism. [Video of the exchange below the break.]
CNN's Soledad O'Brien tried to make race an issue on Tuesday where there was no conflict to begin with, and she continued thumping Republicans over immigration on Wednesday. O'Brien asked candidate Mitt Romney if he was simply driving Latino voters to Obama with his immigration stance, and brought up the issue again in a later interview.
In her interview with Romney, O'Brien cited his opposition to the Dream Act and noted the large Latino voting bloc in Florida, the site of an upcoming GOP primary. "You know immigration is a big issue for Latino voters. When you tackle that, when you say something like that very publicly and very strongly, are you essentially handing those voters off to President Obama?" she pressed the candidate. [Video below the break.]
In a provocative segment on Tuesday's Starting Point, CNN's Soledad O'Brien hit Republican candidates for not campaigning in Iowa's first majority Hispanic town. The liberal CNN host brought on citizens of the town – West Liberty, Iowa – to discuss why no GOP candidate had yet stumped in the town. "GOP candidates skip majority Hispanic town," the CNN headline blared.
One of the four guests, CNN reported, was a Democratic candidate for the Iowa House of Representatives, and another was a Hispanic immigrant who organized for Obama during the 2008 caucuses. What O'Brien also failed to reveal is that the town, with a small population to begin with, voted heavily for Barack Obama in 2008. [Video below the break.]
CNN anchor Soledad O'Brien has had a history of liberal bias – to a scale approaching activism – and she showed where her newest CNN show might be headed on Tuesday with a completely liberal double-standard in her interviews.
During the 7 a.m. hour of CNN's Starting Point, O'Brien hit GOP candidate Michele Bachmann from the left on homosexuality, but later teed up liberal "Occupy" protesters to defend their cause and claim to be "non-partisan." Bachmann blasted O'Brien's "gotcha" question and insisted that voters are focused on economic issues. [Video below the break.]
CNN’s Soledad O’Brien returned to the anchor desk Monday morning as the network reworked its morning anchor line-up for the second year in a row. In 2007, O'Brien was removed as the co-host of CNN’s ratings-challenged American Morning in an effort to jump-start the flagging program. Now she returns to host Starting Point, the second half of CNN’s morning coverage that airs from 7-9 a.m EST.
During her stint as American Morning co-host and as a CNN correspondent, O'Brien repeatedly exhibited a liberal bias -- particularly through her coverage of gay rights issues, her flattering treatment of President Obama, and her promotion of Democratic talking points in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. Some of her most outrageous moments on-air are documented below.
Reporting on the campaigns in Iowa on Friday's Early Show, Times political correspondent Jeff Zeleny belittled candidate Michele Bachmann as "a little bit combustible and volatile."
Zeleny added that "Anyone knows what she could do," in response to CBS anchor Jeff Glor's question about the potential for a candidate to do something before the Iowa Caucus to change the GOP race. [Video below the break.]
In lieu of President Obama's Hawaiian vacation, CNN highlighted the plight of a Hawaiian same-sex couple that will legally celebrate a civil union come January 1st, but desires federal marriage benefits that do not apply to same-sex couples. In a one-sided and sympathetic report, White House correspondent Brianna Keilar painted the picture of a President who could make a gain at the voting booth if he legalizes same-sex marriage.
CNN analyst and National Journal's Ron Brownstein strongly hinted that Obama could be alienating some of his liberal base by sitting on the fence over the gay marriage issue. He made the case that Obama may be losing socially-conservative Democrats anyway, and could "mobilize" voters by supporting same-sex marriage. [Video below the break.]
ABC News White House correspondent Jake Tapper apparently thinks the race is just about over for many campaigns before the Iowa caucus has even begun. On Thursday's Good Morning America, Tapper credited Mitt Romney's recent success in the polls with other campaigns "exploding" on the campaign trail.
Tapper later repeated his former assertions, insisting that other candidates were "just self-immolating and careening off the highway" – harsh language for campaigns that have not even undergone the test of primary season. [Video below the break.]
Faux-conservative David Frum told CNN Thursday morning that only "one person" in the current GOP field was qualified to be president, before adding that fellow phoney-conservative Jon Huntsman might also be able to do the job but his message is not resonating with Republican voters.
Frum, a CNN contributor who regularly appears to give the conservative analysis opposite a liberal panel member, had no qualms about bashing almost the entire Republican field, aside from Romney and Huntsman. "They are not presidents," he insisted during the 8 a.m. hour of American Morning. [Video below the break.]
Taking a tip from Mitt Romney mocking Newt Gingrich, CNN's Hala Gorani asked panel members on Wednesday what sitcom would best describe the Republican presidential race. Gorani's question was "If you could compare the Republican race as a whole with a sitcom, what would it be?" [Video below the break.]
While reporting on candidate Newt Gingrich "taking a pummeling" from "brutal" attack ads, ABC's Jonathan Karl noted Gingrich's positive response – a "bizarre" Gingrich campaign Christmas video that Karl laughed off as "disturbing." Karl's report aired during the 7 a.m. hour of Good Morning America.
"Uh, it's a little disturbing, let me tell you," Karl scoffed at the festive video. A clip showed campaign workers decked in Santa hats singing a campaign-themed Christmas carol. [Video below the break.]
When Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) blamed not only President Obama but also members of his own party for the payroll tax standoff, CNN's Ali Velshi interjected that perhaps the senator was being too hard on the President. McCain had insisted earlier that previous presidents would have done more to get a deal through a divided Congress.
"Is it really fair to put as much heat as you're putting on the President on this one?" Velshi complained to McCain. "I mean, a lot of eyes are pointing to House Republican leadership right now as being intransigent." [Video below the break.]
In Thursday's interview with Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), Early Show co-host Chris Wragge asked if Republicans in Congress are basically helping President Obama get re-elected with their ongoing opposition to the Senate's two-month payroll tax cut extension plan.
"Are you essentially handing President Obama his re-election bid here by handling this the way the Republicans have handled this?" Wragge asked guest Senator McCain. The senator has been a noted critic of House Republicans in their refusal to vote for the Senate plan. [Video below the break.]
After presidential candidate Michele Bachmann referred to North Korea as “the Wal-Mart of missile delivery systems,” CNN correspondent Brian Todd hyped the possible political backlash she could suffer for using Wal-Mart’s name in such a manner.
The CNN headline blared “Bachmann Insults Wal-Mart” and Todd whacked the GOP candidate with a critical segment on her making an “odd Wal-Mart reference.”
CNN’s Alina Cho touted “The man many Democrats call the best president in modern times” in her gushing interview of former President Clinton that aired multiple times Wednesday. By the end of the interview, she sounded utterly enthralled by Clinton and his humanitarian work.
“150 countries, more than that,” Cho told Clinton of his travels, before taking a deep breath and tremulously asking “What keeps you going?” She praised the President’s efforts, gushing that Clinton is “Working tirelessly to make a difference. Traveling all over the world.” [Video of the segment below the break.]
When asked how both parties would handle an ultimate failure to extend the payroll tax cut, CNN’s Wolf Blitzer immediately painted the scenario as a big advantage for the Democrats. “Well it’ll be great ammunition for the Democrats, because they’ll obviously blame the Republicans, especially House Republicans,” Blizter asserted during the 2 p.m. hour of Newsroom.
Blitzer didn’t say how Republicans could use the news to their advantage; he only expounded upon how President Obama and the Democrats would “hammer” Republicans if a deal was not struck. Blitzer noted that Obama’s rising poll numbers could be related to the battle over the tax cut extension.
Reporting on the death of North Korean dictator Kim Jong-il on Monday, CNN's American Morning re-visited a soft report from then-correspondent Alina Cho's heavily-guarded visit to the country in 2010.
Cho admitted that the state controlled where she went – but her reporting was fawning at times in what clearly was the state's effort to produce propaganda for outside nations. [Video below the break. Click here for audio.]
Time magazine's editor-in-chief Richard Stengel was asked on Sunday's Reliable Sources to respond to NewsBusters criticizing the inclusion of the Occupy Wall Street movement into Time magazine's "Person of the Year" award, given to "The Protester." In contrast, the Tea Party which helped the Republicans win a landslide election victory in 2010 earned only runner-up status in Time that year.
CNN host Howard Kurtz asked Stengel straight-up about criticisms of the magazine's bias: "Now, some of the criticism of this cover selection comes from the right, the conservative site, NewsBusters saying, 'Time is so liberal that it could not consider the Tea Party protest as a 'Person of the Year' entry, but that's not true with Occupy Wall Street.' Your response?" [Video below the break.]
After the Parents Television Council (PTC) denounced NBC's appointment of shock jock Howard Stern as a judge on "America's Got Talent," Stern issued his response on Thursday's Piers Morgan Tonight.
"I guess they get their printer out and they make a letterhead and they start to complain that I'm some sort of weird pervert who's going to convert Americans into some kind of zombie sex fiends," Stern mocked the PTC. The ever-controversial entertainer assured viewers that he would be a "good judge" on NBC's prime-time performance show. [Video below the break. Click here for audio.]
Anderson Cooper found yet another way to scrutinize Republicans, as on Tuesday he spotlighted GOP candidates attacking each other's record after each promised to run positive campaigns – even though verbal spars happen during every single election.
The segment's title of "Keeping Them Honest" insinuated that the subject is being deceitful or dishonest, and Cooper decided to call the candidates out for backtracking on their promises of positive campaigns – even though an overall positive campaign doesn't necessarily rule out attacks on opponents' records. [Video below the break. Click here for audio.]
CNN touted a study from the liberal Tax Policy Center claiming that Newt Gingrich's tax plan would increase the deficit. On Tuesday afternoon's The Situation Room, business correspondent Poppy Harlow simply labeled the Tax Policy Center "non-partisan" even though it is a joint venture of two liberal think tanks, the Urban Institute and the Brookings Institute.
CNN even reported the Gingrich campaign's claim that the study did not include "many details" of the plan because the campaign "does not recognize them as an independent arbiter of tax policy information." That bit of information was buried at the end of CNN's report, however. [Video below the break. Click here for audio.]
CNN's Piers Morgan easily could have been mistaken for Obama campaign strategist David Axelrod on his Monday night show. In two separate interviews -- with RNC chairman Reince Priebus and Hollywood Obama supporter Harvey Weinstein -- Morgan kept chipping in on behalf of the President's re-election in 2012.
When RNC chairman Reince Priebus attacked Obama's low poll numbers, Morgan countered that the President has lately garnered "a few ticks in the box" to use in his behalf, including improving jobs numbers and the end of the Iraq War. The CNN host used the same argument in his interview with David Axelrod last week, emphasizing the positives in Obama's record of late. [Video below the break. Click here for audio.]
Conservative columnist Rich Galen lampooned CNN for its liberal bias during his appearance on Monday's The Situation Room. During the bottom of the 4 p.m. hour, anchor Wolf Blitzer threw water on right-wing claims that President Obama is waging a "war on religion," and Galen called him out for one-sided coverage of the matter.
GOP candidate Rick Perry had recently produced a campaign ad accusing Obama of running a "war on religion." Blitzer, noting the accusation, played a moving montage of performances from Sunday's "Christmas in Washington" pageant, attended by the President, and then asked how Obama could be considered anti-Christmas if he had attended such a public display.
Faux-Republican David Frum took a shot at Fox News viewers on Sunday when he told CNN's Howard Kurtz that "people who watch a lot of Fox come away knowing a lot less about important world events." Frum's interview aired during the bottom half of the 11 a.m. hour of Reliable Sources.
Even Kurtz, who has worked for the liberal media for three decades, challenged Frum's hard-line criticism of the right-wing media. "You're tarring with an awfully broad brush there" he told Frum, who in a recent New York Magazine column accused the conservative media of running an "alternative knowledge system" of "pseudo-facts and pretend information." [Video below the break. Click here for audio.]
CNN's liberal anchor Fareed Zakaria whacked Republicans in an interview clip that aired on CNN Friday, asserting that the GOP primary "wants people to say incendiary things." Zakaria's full interview with faux-conservative presidential candidate Jon Huntsman will air Sunday on Fareed Zakaria GPS.
Zakaria set the table for Huntsman, the liberal media's favorite GOP candidate, to blister the rhetoric of the GOP field as unsustainable. "[T]here is a market for people to say slightly outrageous things," Zakaria noted of the GOP primary. "So you just refuse to say those kinds of incendiary things?" he asked of Huntsman. [Video below the break. Click here for audio.]