ABC’s Good Morning America hosts continued to reminisce on Tuesday, preparing for co-anchor Diane Sawyer’s final show on Friday. Weatherman Sam Champion touted the morning show host’s 2004 defense of Howard Dean and his famous Dean Scream: Recounting the segment, Sawyer proudly asserted, "Howard Dean deserved that moment of correction. He did." [Audio available here.]
Champion reconstructed the Sawyer piece on a rally where the then-presidential candidate uttered a well-remembered "Yeah!" Champion recounted, "...When I looked back at all the things where Diane has always asked questions on both sides, all sides of an event- and I think it was, kind of, really intuitive to see the Howard Dean scream and say, ‘Wait a minute. We're not seeing the whole thing.’" He added, "And people are making more out of this than maybe they should be."
ABC’s George Stephanopoulos appeared on Tuesday’s Good Morning America to spin and minimize Senator Harry Reid’s contention that opponents of health care reform are similar to supporters of slavery. After ABC played a truncated version of Reid’s quote, Stephanopoulos, hopefully observed, "My guess is this is going to blow over." [Audio available here.]
He did concede to co-host Robin Roberts: "Republicans were just furious about that, Robin." But, ABC didn’t show any clips of "furious" Republicans complaining about the harsh attack. Prior to the clip being played, Stephanopoulos, who is rumored to be the next host of Good Morning America, adopted a charitable description of Reid’s comparison to slavery: "Boy, the whole Senate floor exploded over [the remarks] yesterday, when Senator Reid went to the floor and tried to rally his Democrats by evoking these great legislative fights of the past."
On Monday’s Good Morning America, the ABC show began a week’s worth of nostalgic segments on the legacy of host Diane Sawyer, who will leave the program on Friday to become the new anchor of World News. Chris Cuomo gushed over Sawyer’s 2006 trip to North Korea, lauding her "pivotal" interview: "It really matters to people and it makes us all proud, when you hear something like that. You ask that question that we were all so worried about."
Cuomo was referring to Sawyer’s questioning of a North Korean general, but didn’t mention her superficial tour of a school in that country, also from the same visit. (See above video.) On the October 19, 2006 GMA, while being escorted by officials of the state, she touted, "It is a world away from the unruly individualism of any American school."
Seemingly ignoring the concept of propaganda and brainwashing, Sawyer intoned, "Ask [the students] about their country, and they can’t say enough." One North Korean girl brightly chirped, "We are the happiest children in the world."
A defensive Robin Roberts on Monday lauded the potential passage of any kind of health care bill as a "historic moment," seeming to bristle at Bill O’Reilly’s grade of a D for the President’s performance on this issue. The Fox News host appeared on Good Morning America to award Barack Obama a D, C and B, overall.
O’Reilly bluntly assessed, "Health care, I'd say D as in dog...But, you can't be putting out a 2,000-page bill, which the Senate did, and President Obama has not been able to explain it." He challenged the ABC host, "Do you understand any of this? I don't." Seeming to ignore O’Reilly’s critique, Roberts shot back, "But we do know that if something is passed, Harry Truman couldn't get anything passed. President Clinton couldn't get anything passed. It will be an historic moment." [Audio available here.]
O’Reilly simply dismissed, "That's good. But, we won't understand what it is that's historic. We'll go, 'Hey, it's historic, but I don't know what it is!'"
In the December 4, 2009 edition of Entertainment Weekly, CBS’s Katie Couric bizarrely asserted that the late Walter Cronkite possessed an "unwavering commitment to reporting the news accurately, fairly, and responsibly." In the brief tribute, she also repeated, "Walter Cronkite once said, ‘Objective journalism and an opinion column are about as similar as the Bible and Playboy.’"
In reality, Cronkite thought of himself as a liberal and often defended the left-wing tilt of journalists. On the September 11, 1995 edition of Larry King Live, he spun, "I define liberal as a person who is not doctrinaire...That's opposed to 'liberal' as part of the political spectrum....open to change, constantly, not committed to any particular creed or doctrine, or whatnot, and in that respect I think that news people should be liberal."
On the Discovery Channel documentary Cronkite Remembers, which aired May 23, 1996, the journalist said of Ronald Reagan, "I don't think he brought very much to the presidency, except charisma and success." And yet in her EW appreciation piece, Couric gushed, "...[Cronkite] would likely call on those of us who are carrying on his torch to see the power and potential of all the new tools of our trade, but never lose sight of the primary objective: a search for the truth."
MSNBC’s Dylan Ratigan on Friday aggressively took on the subject of ClimateGate, informing a global warming scientist that the "perceived integrity of what you are saying is diminished by scientists who appear to be hiding something." If MSNBC can debate this serious subject, why have the three major networks ignored it for 14 days? [Audio available here.]
The Morning Meeting host brought on Yale scientist Dan Esty and Michael Shermer, executive director of the Skeptic Society, to debate the revelation that hacked E-mails to a climate change institute show a willingness to fake data. An appalled Ratigan continued, "Because, then, the veil of suspicion or the eye of suspicion is cast upon the entire data set when a certain number of scientists- who are trying to retain their particular political power or role as meaningful advocate and feel threatened by the truth- that hurts the integrity of everything."
During the segment, Esty repeatedly asserted that, despite the revelations, the overall science is sound. He did allow that those who fake data should be "condemned." That wasn’t enough for Ratigan. He quickly retorted, "Not only condemned, but punished and eliminated from the conversation. If you want to have a clean data set, you don't keep bad data as a scientist inside your Petri dishes. You just don't."
The Washington Post on Thursday reported that ABC has offered the position of Good Morning America co-host to former top Clinton aide George Stephanopoulos. According to the Post’s Howard Kurtz, Stephanopoulos, should he take the job, wants more politics in the morning program: "...Stephanopoulos has pushed for a role reshaped to spotlight his interest in politics and hard news rather than feature segments."
Would this mean a greater infusion of liberal bias from the ex-Democratic operative? If his track record on This Week, and guest appearances on GMA are any indication, the answer is yes. The MRC’s Profile in Bias has documented Stephanopoulos’ left-wing spin. For instance, he declared Barack Obama and Joe Biden the winner of all four presidential debates in 2008.
On the May 13, 2007 This Week, Stephanopoulos tarred Republicans as racist and unlikely to vote for Obama: "Maybe I’m wrong, maybe I’m naive...I guess I think that anyone who’s not going to vote for Barack Obama because he is black isn’t going to vote for a Democrat anyway."
On Newsweek.com, NBC Nightly News anchor Brian Williams absolutely gushed over the lefty comedy of the "indispensable" Jon Stewart. The post, which was promoted in the December 7, 2009 edition of the magazine, featured Williams fawning, "In just the span of a short few years, Jon Stewart has gone from optional to indispensable."
Not holding back his hyperbole, Williams rhapsodized about the harsh interview the Daily Show host conducted with CNBC host Jim Cramer. He compared Stewart’s attack on Cramer to that of another moment liberals love: "And yet, in the niche-y, hip, and in-the-know world of late-night, media-skewering comedy, it had the impact of Cronkite turning against Vietnam." Coming from Williams, that certainly is high praise. Appearing on the July 17, 2009 edition of Larry King, the NBC anchor enthused that he was honored "just was able to breathe the air [Cronkite] exhaled."
Newsweek.com on Tuesday offered a bizarre, liberal fantasy that posited what would happen if Al Gore won the 2000 election. Writer David Rakoff composed the supposedly satirical article, which features Gore averting the 9/11 terrorist attacks: "An August 2001 Daily Intelligence Briefing warns, 'Bin Ladin [sic] Determined to Strike in the U.S.,' which prompts the president to authorize the strategic bombing of targets in the Khost province of Afghanistan, near the Pakistani border."
Rakoff, who has written for Salon.com and contributed to the audio version of Jon Stewart’s book, portrayed Joe Lieberman as a disloyal vice president who ultimately resigns.
He also spun Gore as a quick acting President who took action after Hurricane Katrina and kept the death count down to 17 people:
Good Morning America’s Diane Sawyer on Wednesday conducted a generally tough interview with Joe Biden on the subject of Afghanistan, but ignored an embarrassing gaffe from the Vice President: "Our number one enemy concern is the existential threat, al Qaeda. Number two is the stability of a nuclear state called Afghanistan, under siege by radicals." Did the Vice President, perhaps, mean Pakistan? It's unclear as Sawyer didn't follow up. [Audio available here.]
Earlier in the segment, responding to Sawyer’s comment that Republicans believe setting a date for removing troops is a bad idea, Biden argued, "How are they emboldened, knowing that by the time we train up the Afghanis, we're going to be gradually handing off, beginning in 2003 [sic]?" Beginning in 2003? Would journalists allow Sarah Palin to get away with such obvious malapropisms?
Good Morning America host Diane Sawyer on Tuesday badgered Robert Gibbs from the left, quizzing the White House press secretary about Democratic resistance to a troop surge in Afghanistan. She began by fretting, "Is this the last time the President is going to ask for American troops from the American people?"
After Gibbs mentioned the dangerous threat of al Qaeda, Sawyer reiterated, "...If the generals come back in six months and say, we need just another 10,000, another 15,000 to finish this job, you're saying the answer will be no?"
The GMA host, who will become the new anchor of World News in January, worried about the cost of a troop surge: "What about the cost of the war? What do you say to members of the Democratic Party, the President's own party, who say we simply cannot afford this $100 billion cost?"
ABC’s David Wright again attacked Sarah Palin on Tuesday, slamming her for using a private jet for her book tour. On Good Morning America, he sniped, "But, while her fans camped out in the bitter cold, just for the chance to meet her, the former vice presidential candidate was quietly traveling in style, aboard this Gulfstream II private jet. Price tag, $4,000 an hour." [Audio available here.]
Introducing the segment, co-host Diane Sawyer chided, "And [Palin] frequently can be seen photographed in front of the bus that she took on the road. But people have been watching her, say you don't often see photos of her in front of a very expensive private plane that she's been taking."
To drive his class warfare point home, Wright derided, "Keep in mind, this is the same former Alaska governor who famously got rid of the governor's jet." It was only at the end of the segment that Wright admitted, "But, one company representative told Good Morning America, Harper Collins paid the tab for the jet. And that Palin took it only for three legs of the journey, when it was logistically necessary."
In a 10,500 word story on the state of the Republican Party, Washington Post staff writers on Monday waited until paragraph 36 of a 37 paragraph article to highlight the overwhelming belief that the press is biased against Republicans. Jon Cohen and Dan Balz belatedly noted, "One rallying point for the GOP, though, is a broad perception among moderates, conservatives, and younger and older Republicans alike that television news is biased against the Republican Party and tilted highly in favor of Obama and Democrats." [Emphasis added.]
Additionally, the print edition of the paper featured 15 charts about what respondents thought of Republicans in Congress, what issues they saw as important and other topics. Unsurprisingly, the Post did not create a graph to highlight the fact that 74 percent of poll-takers who lean Republican think "television news" is biased in favor the Democratic Party. (It’s unclear why the poll question only surveyed the biases of television. Was the liberal paper afraid of what people might say about the Post?)
Good Morning America’s Bill Weir on Sunday defended the $300 million in pork that Senator Mary Landrieu acquired for her state, spinning, "The people of Louisiana sent her to Washington to get as much sausage as they could, you know, she could."
Landrieu provided the 60th vote on Saturday to bring the Senate’s health care bill up for debate. In return, millions in new funding will go to Louisiana. Guest George Stephanopoulos touted the money as a real bargain: "But I think Democrats are saying it's a pretty cheap vote. $300 million. Without Senator Landrieu's vote yesterday, this bill would have died, would have been very difficult to put it back together."
It didn’t seem to occur to either Stephanopoulos or Weir that one job of a senator might be to not waste millions in taxpayer money.
On Saturday, Fox News analyst Jim Pinkerton credited the Media Research Center for highlighting the lack of media outrage over the Obama administration’s fake congressional district scandal. After referencing the revelation that the Recovery.gov website claimed thousands of jobs had been saved in districts that don’t exist, Pinkerton suggested, "They [Obama officials] were embarrassed, but as the Media Research Center pointed out, the morning shows gave the story exactly 21 seconds."
Pinkerton was referencing a November 17 NewsBusters blog which noted that Tuesday’s Early Show on CBS and NBC’s Today show completely skipped the developing story. ABC’s Good Morning America devoted just 21 seconds to the topic. On Saturday’s Fox News Watch, Pinkerton concluded, "So, no, [the Obama administration will] get over it, because the media aren't going to turn this into another Watergate."
The Library of Congress' new exhibit on Herbert Block (often known as "Herblock") completely avoids labeling the famous cartoonist as a liberal, instead portraying him as an "independent spirit." The retrospective features 81 poster-sized drawings by the late Washington Post artist and never once identifies Block's politics.
The exhibit, which opened on October 13, 2009, and can be found in Washington, D.C., pretends that the cartoonist was a bold truth-teller. Taking in the display on Saturday, I was struck by how often this myth was touted. One section gushed over Block, who worked for the Post from 1946 to his death in 2001, for practicing his art "with fearless independence." Yet, he was really just a liberal journalist, something the exhibits celebrate, even if the L-word isn’t used.
Visitors are told that "Reagan appalled Block in a way that only Joseph McCarthy and Richard Nixon had done before." One cartoon showed Ronald Reagan driving by the homeless, ignoring their plight. (In the comic, the President quipped, "Strange how some choose to live like that, instead of choosing to be rich like us.")
Talk show host Dick Cavett, whose TV show went off the air in 1982, appeared on MSNBC, Friday, to trash Sarah Palin as a "know nothing" and someone who has "no first language." Mostly, however, he seemed interested only in talking about himself, prompting News Live host Norah O’Donnell to chide, "Dick, this segment is about Sarah Palin, not about you, Dick." [Audio available here.]
John Harwood, New York Times writer and CNBC contributor, co-hosted and kicked off the segment with this condescending question: "Let me ask you what you make of the Sarah Palin phenomenon and, in particular, the argument that some people make, well, she might not be a good President, but she'd be a good talk show host. You think so?"
Cavett clearly wanted to bash Palin, but he really wanted to tout his own brilliance and a column he wrote for the New York Times over a year ago: "The subject is a dear one to me because I wrote a notorious, apparently, column about Sarah Palin called the Wild Wordsmith of Wasilla for my Times Online blog. And, you know, it is interesting. When you are quoted for something you said on the air, it's one thing. But, when they quoted something you wrote, it is pleasing in a different way."
CBS’s Early Show on Friday completely ignored the grilling Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner received on Capitol Hill on Thursday and the calls for his resignation by members of Congress. ABC’s Good Morning America and NBC’s Today both covered the contentious exchanges.
ABC’s Good Morning America provided the most coverage. Correspondent Bianna Golodryga observed that "a handful of Republicans and one Democrat are calling for his resignation" based on the current economic situation. She then played video of Republican Michael Burgess deriding Geithner: "I don't think you should be fired. I thought you never should have been hired."
Another clip featured Republican Kevin Brady directly asking the Treasury Secretary: "For the sake of our jobs, will you step down from your post?" But, even though the Early Show found time for generous coverage of Oprah Winfrey and the announcement that she’s retiring in two years, the news program skipped reporting on the calls for Geithner’s resignation by these Republicans. (House Democrat Peter DeFazio and Democratic Senator Maria Cantwell both have previously made similar announcements.)
ABC’s Robin Roberts on Thursday pressed a government official on rationing and a new recommendation that women under the age of 50 shouldn’t get regular mammograms. Talking to one of report's authors, she chided, "Dr. [Thomas] Wilt, you know many are feeling that this is trying to save money, that this is a political move."
Roberts challenged Wilt, who is with the U.S. Preventative Services Task Force. Although she didn’t specifically use the word rationing, the implication was clear: "You are an independent panel, but federally funded independent panel. How do you respond to those who feel that this is nothing more than a cost-saving measure?"
On Wednesday’s GMA, the program featured a clip of Dr. Peter Jokich, of Rush University Medical Center. Making a similar point, he derided the report: "I think it’s totally ridiculous. I may not be politically correct, but I think this is really about money and politics. It’s about the beginning of rationing care and I don’t think it’s really about the health of individual women."
MSNBC’s Dr. Nancy Snyderman appeared on Wednesday’s Morning Joe and justified reducing the number of women in their 40s who get mammograms. "No, it is rationing. Let's be clear," she admitted.
Confusing private actions by American citizens and the government, the Dr. Nancy host compared, "But, you ration what food you eat. You ration how much sleep you get. And this is saying we should question about how we spend our health care dollars." Of course, the government doesn’t control how much food and sleep Americans get.
Host Joe Scarborough made the same point, though he didn’t seem so cheery about rationing: "You talk about the death panels. Forget the death panels. This is rationing, saying, 'Okay, we could do this. We could save some lives. It's just not worth the money.'"
NBC and CBS’s morning shows on Tuesday completely ignored the revelation that the Obama administration’s Recovery.gov website claims to have saved or created jobs in congressional districts that don’t exist. ABC’s Good Morning America devoted 21 seconds to the developing story.
On ABCNews.com, Jonathan Karl wrote, "In Arizona's 15th congressional district, 30 jobs have been saved or created with just $761,420 in federal stimulus spending." There is no 15th congressional district in Arizona. On Monday night’s World News, the network did manage a full report by Karl. He elaborated, "And it lists $34 million spent in Arizona's 86th district. That district doesn't exist either. In fact, in virtually every state, the website lists millions of dollars spent and hundreds of jobs created in fictional congressional districts."
Sarah Palin appeared on Tuesday’s Good Morning America to promote her new book and hit back at liberal condescension from journalists, most notably attacking Katie Couric as arrogant. Speaking of her infamous interview with the CBS anchor during the 2008 campaign, Palin interpreted Couric’s question about what newspapers she read as "How up there in Alaska, in this kind of nomadic, Neanderthal atmosphere that you live in, how are you connected to the world?"
The former governor admitted to interviewer Barbara Walters: "Unfortunately, I was wearing my annoyance on my sleeve. And I shouldn't have done that. Because, it seemed to me that she was asking ‘Do you read?’" After noting that, at that point in the campaign, she had just completed an op-ed for the New York Times, Palin chided, "And that surprised me that [Couric] hadn't done that homework."
Only four days after airing faked photographs purporting to be of Sarah Palin wearing a bikini and holding a gun, MSNBC hosts on Tuesday decided they were qualified to fact check the ex-governor of Alaska. Contessa Brewer chided Palin’s new memoir: "But can this book really be classified as fact, fiction or a little of both? Okay, so here is a bit of fact-checking."
Brewer, who was part of the Morning Meeting segment on Friday that also featured a doctored photo of Palin’s head on the body of someone wearing a black mini-skirt, delighted in mentioning John McCain aides who disputed the book. "One, in fact, called it pathetic score settling," she announced. The MSNBC graphic hyped, "Palin Book: Fact of Fiction?"
Of course, much of the brief "fact checking" piece amounted to Brewer recounting how Palin said one thing and ex-McCain aides said something else: "In another part of the book, Palin claims she was pushed into risky network interviews including that rocky one-on-one with Katie Couric. McCain's former campaign says that is a fabrication." Brewer breathlessly explained that "McCain aides deny ever forcing Palin or her family to dress up in designer clothes." These are not examples of "fact checking." They are simply accusation swapping.
MSNBC’s Dylan Ratigan apologized on Monday for using photoshopped images of Sarah Palin firing a gun while wearing a bikini. The pictures, which were first brought to light on NewsBusters, appeared during a November 13 segment on the former governor and also included a doctored photo of the Republican in a black mini-skirt.
The Morning Meeting host explained, "I want to apologize to Governor Palin and all of our viewers. On Friday, in a very misguided attempt to have some fun in advance of Sarah Palin's upcoming book Going Rogue, our staff mistakenly used some clearly photoshopped images of Ms. Palin without any acknowledgment."
Calling the use of such faked images "unacceptable," Ratigan continued: "We should have never used those photos in the first place and you can rest assured we spent the weekend and Friday afternoon taking measures to make sure it will never happen again. I apologize."
Good Morning America on Monday began a week of coverage on Sarah Palin’s new book by repeatedly fact checking claims from the Republican and highlighting a attack by the liberals’ favorite "conservative," New York Times columnist David Brooks. Reporter Kate Snow asserted that "even conservatives are on the attack" against Palin.
She then played a clip of Brooks, who has previously gone after Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck and others: "Yeah, she's a joke. I mean I just can't take her seriously. The idea that this potential talk show host is considered seriously for the Republican nomination, believe me, it'll never happen."
The Daily Beast on Friday reported that former Democratic aide turned journalist George Stephanopoulos has now pulled ahead of ex-Democratic Governor Mario Cuomo’s son, Chris Cuomo, in the race to become the new co-host of Good Morning America. Correspondent Rebecca Dana quoted an ABC source as saying, "It’s George’s now to lose."
Dana added, "That both contenders are associated with prominent Democrats has helped to add a campaign vibe to the contest for Sawyer’s anchor chair." She then gossiped, "There is a rumor floating around ABC that Mario Cuomo has placed some calls on his son’s behalf..." (Chris Cuomo is also the brother of New York state’s current Democratic attorney general.)
If Stephanopoulos does become the new host of GMA, there would potentially be an opening at his old show, This Week. The Daily Beast asserted that the contenders are Jake Tapper and Nightline co-host Terry Moran, a well known liberal. On February 20, 2009, Moran famously provided this over-the-top comparison between Barack Obama and George Washington: "I like to say that, in some ways, Barack Obama is the first President since George Washington to be taking a step down into the Oval Office."
On Friday's edition of Morning Meeting, host Dylan Ratigan featured fake photos of Sarah Palin during a mocking segment on why Americans are fascinated with the former vice presidential candidate. While listing the show’s top ten reasons, Ratigan showed a doctored photo of Palin’s head on the bikini-clad body of a woman holding a weapon.
The host never admitted or addressed the fact that his network was passing off counterfeit pictures to his viewers. Earlier in the segment, Ratigan displayed an image of Palin in a short, black mini-skirt. This photo is also not real. MSNBC should immediately apologize for presenting such false information.
It's important to remember, several hosts on the network, including Chris Matthews, have mocked Fox News host Sean Hannity for taking video images from the 9/12 rally and then portraying the footage as from a more recent tea party event. After it was brought to his attention, Hannity apologized on Wednesday. How long will it take MSNBC?
MSNBC's Nancy Snyderman attacked Catholic bishops on Thursday for opposing abortion funding in the health care bill, agreeing with the President of NOW that the IRS should investigate them. The "Dr. Nancy" host also complained, "This is going to be a Pollyannaish statement. The Catholic bishops appearing and having a political voice seems to be a most fundamental violation of church and state."
Terry O’Neill, the President of the National Organization for Women, quickly concurred: "You know, that's the first thing that I said. I don't know where the Internal Revenue Service is, but I hope they're paying attention." Snyderman responded, "Me, too." Watching this segment, a viewer could be confused as to who was the leader of a left-wing feminist group and who was the supposedly neutral cable anchor. (It should be pointed out that NOW is a non-profit group and has a tax exempt component to its organization. Should the IRS go after them?)
Snyderman repeatedly allowed O’Neill’s hyperbolic statements to go unchallenged. She absurdly claimed that the amendment by Democratic Congressman Bart Stupak, which prohibits funding for abortion in the health care bill, "essentially overrules Roe V. Wade."The MSNBC host said nothing. When O’Neill frothed, "It's not acceptable to change health care for America while sending women off into the back alleys to die," Snyderman again stayed silent.
Newsweek senior editor Jerry Adler on Thursday posted a bizarre poem on the publication’s website, mocking Lou Dobbs for leaving CNN and insinuating that the cable anchor might be crazy: "So wily Lou has picked the locks That kept him in his padded box And tiptoed off, in just his socks." [Punctuation original to the poem.]
Adler, whose poem reads like a cross between Dr. Seuss and Calvin Trillin, also trashed Dobbs and his viewers for opposing illegal immigration: "A network just for frat-boy jocks? Where aliens are put in stocks And viewers pelt them with big rocks Before each half-time show?" [Emphasis added.] He concluded by speculating on Dobbs’ future: "Could it be UPN, or Cox? They’d have to open up Fort Knox We know Lou’s crazy, like a Fox."
In addition to composing poetry, Adler also famously made this pronouncement about the environment on December 31, 1990: "It's a morbid observation, but if everyone on Earth just stopped breathing for an hour, the greenhouse effect would no longer be a problem."
World News anchor Charles Gibson admitted on Tuesday, "I worry about the lack of objectivity and the future of the news business." According to the Boston Herald, the ABC host spoke before the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce and said of Fox News and MSNBC: "I don’t like the fact that they’re delivering news based on the conviction of its viewers." He also derided some viewers who "watch news that plays to their own prejudices."
With no sense of irony, Gibson attacked Republicans for being obstructionist on health care: "It’s not being very productive to have an opposition party that simply says, ‘We are going to fight the president no matter what on health-care reform. We are not going to give you a single vote and we are going to march in lock step against you." He added that this is "not good for the country."