Only CBS AM Coverage of Michigan Is Stewart Mocking Term 'Right to Work'

On Wednesday, CBS This Morning shipwrecked its aim to be the hard-news alternative to ABC's Good Morning America and NBC's Today. Its only coverage of the passage of the right-to-work law in Michigan was a clip of Comedy Central's Jon Stewart ripping the legislation. Anchors Charlie Rose and Norah O'Donnell laughed on air in reaction to Stewart's shtick, with O'Donnell adding, "That's pretty good."

The liberal Daily Show host poked fun of the "right-to-work" phrase as an Orwellian reversal of reality (audio available here; video below the jump):

"It's really a right to work around the union for the corporation. It's one of those things that are actually named for the opposite of the thing they do, like strip bars call themselves 'gentlemen's clubs'....Or the TV network dedicated to making us stupider is called The Learning Channel."

CBS This Morning regularly "balances" its hard news with liberal agit-comedy from Stewart and fellow Comedy Central host Stephen Colbert. On November 30, 2012, the morning newscast spotlighted a clip from Colbert's show where he mocked a proposed gun dorm at the University of Colorado and stereotyped gun owners. Back in August 2012, the program played a clip of the South Carolina native making light of the controversial federal abortifacient/contraception mandate under ObamaCare.

The CBS morning show even devoted a whole segment on Friday to Colbert's effort to get his fans to lobby South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley to name him to replace outgoing Senator Jim DeMint, all the while failing to identify him as a liberal.

The transcript of the Jon Stewart clip played on Wednesday's CBS This Morning, along with Charlie Rose and Norah O'Donnell's reaction:


JON STEWART (from Comedy Central's "The Daily Show"): Maybe it won't be so bad. I mean, the phrase 'right to work' is such a positive and uplifting message. What could it possibly do to organizations like unions that also support workers' rights? I mean, the law probably strengthens unions.

[Graphic: "Michigan's Right To Work: Motown Wreckers")

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE REPORTER (from WNEM, Lansing, Michigan): It will make it illegal for unions and employers to mandate that employees be a part of a union or pay any amount of money to that union.

Charlie Rose, CBS News Anchor; & Norah O'Donnell, CBS News Anchor; Screen Cap From 12 December 2012 Edition of CBS This Moring | NewsBusters.orgSTEWART: (audience laughs) So, it's really a right to work around the union for the corporation. It's one of those things that are actually named for the opposite of the thing they do, like strip bars call themselves 'gentlemen's clubs'. (audience laughs) They're not. Or the TV network dedicated to making us stupider is called The Learning Channel. (audience laughs)

NORAH O'DONNELL: (Rose and O'Donnell laugh) Pretty good – that's pretty good.

Matthew Balan
Matthew Balan
Matthew Balan is a news analyst at Media Research Center