During the roundtable segment on Sunday's Meet the Press, NBC's Andrea Mitchell typically acted as Barack Obama's press secretary defending the President from any and all criticism lodged by other panelists.
Apparently having witnessed enough shameless advocacy from a so-called journalist, when Mitchell used the Occupy Wall Street movement to defend Obama's economic policies, former Democratic Congressman Harold Ford Jr. replied, "He's the President. Democrats can't criticize Republicans for catering to the Tea Party and not be, and not say to our Democratic Party you got to look beyond Occupy and be willing to do what's in the best interest of the country" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
DAVID GREGORY, HOST: Harold Ford, it was none other than Steve Jobs in the new biography by Walter Isaacson who, who writes about him meeting with Obama, and this is how The Huffington Post reported it. Jobs telling Obama "`You're headed for a one-term presidency,' he said at their meeting, insisting that the administration needed to be more business-friendly." This is still the, the overhang they have to deal with.
FMR. DEMOCRATIC CONGRESSMAN HAROLD FORD JR.: Look, their posture has been really bad. Their policies have not been nearly as bad. If you think about the beginning of his administration, people thought that he would pass card check, and there was great angst, concern and anxiety in the business community, particularly the retail community. He didn't do it. He's been...
FORMER GENERAL ELECTRIC CEO JACK WELCH: Tragic.
FMR. REP. FORD JR.: Right. Well, he didn't do it. The congressmen tried, but he didn't do it, and it didn't get, it didn't get done. Cars, banks, financial institutions, he's been great. The EPA regulations he's backed off on. But the posture and the language and the rhetoric has been just too overheated. And to, to Mr. Welch's point, you can't, you can't incentivize the type of things that he, that they incentivized in this bill. Two, you have huge balance sheets on the part of corporate America, meaning they're making money. You got to incentivize them, as the president has asked, to use that money to stimulate job creation. There's a way to do it, if you have some certainty around regulations and taxes.
ANDREA MITCHELL: How does he follow that...
FMR. REP. FORD JR.: And two, you've got 1.2, maybe 1.3 trillion sitting overseas.
MR. WELCH: Mm-hmm. Yeah.
FMR. REP. FORD JR.: Allow that money to come back. But...
MS. MITCHELL: With Occupy Wall Street, how does he take that posture?
FMR. REP. FORD JR.: He's the President, Andrea. He's the President.
MS. MITCHELL: He's caught between two polar opposites.
FMR. REP. FORD JR.: We Democrats, we Democrats can't criticize Republicans for catering to the Tea Party and not be, and not say to our Democratic Party you got to look beyond Occupy and be willing to do what's in the best interest of the country.
Readers are encouraged to review the video of the entire fourteen minute segment to see additional instances of Mitchell acting more like Obama's press secretary than a journalist.
As for Ford, it's nice to see there are still some Democrats that are willing to honestly discuss what's going on in the country without regard to Party.
If only folks like Mitchell and her colleagues in the press behaved that way.