Despite the "historic" nature of Thursday's Supreme Court ruling that the Second Amendment is an individual right, all three morning shows virtually ignored the decision, devoting a combined total of three minutes and 33 seconds to the story. And between CBS's "Early Show," NBC's "Today" and ABC's "Good Morning America," that's out of eight hours of programming.
In fact, the three and a half minutes of story time does not even equal the over four minutes that Wednesday's "Early Show" alone gave to the critically important subject of how to Feng Shui your house for pets. On Friday, however, the CBS program could only find a mere 30 seconds for the most definitive gun ruling the Supreme Court has ever made. And while "Good Morning America" spent almost three minutes on Madonna and whether or not she's getting divorced, the show only allowed 93 seconds of air time for the D.C. gun case. Similarly, the "Today" show devoted 90 seconds to the topic, despite admitting that it was "the most important ruling ever on gun rights." Now, what could the cause for all this be? Could it have something to do with the fact that presidential candidate Barack Obama has repeatedly flip-flopped about his position on the case? Or maybe it's because Democrats in general don't seem eager to see gun control become a major issue in the 2008 presidential race and liberals in the media are helpfully playing along.
"Good Morning America" co-host Robin Roberts treated Father Michael Pfleger to a fawning interview on Thursday in which she mostly ignored his radical comments and lauded the "maverick priest," describing him as "not someone to be silenced."
Although, a previous segment featured a single clip of Pfleger's sermon at the former church of Barack Obama where he viciously attacked Senator Hillary Clinton, Roberts ignored other, more inflammatory remarks by the priest, such as his assertion, made during the same sermon as the Clinton attack, that "America has been raping people of color and America has to pay the price for the rape!" Of course, Roberts didn't mention this quote. Instead, she spun Pfleger as someone who is "passionate about the Word" and cheered the anti-crime and poverty work he's done.
The U.S. is not in a recession, but viewers wouldn't know it from watching "Good Morning America." In the span of three days, the ABC program has eight times proposed cures in its "Recession Rescue" segment. On June 24 alone, GMA fretted about the "recession" five times. This is despite the fact that America hasn't had one quarter of negative growth, let alone the two necessary for there to be a recession.
On Tuesday, teasing a story on how bad credit can keep people from getting a job, co-host Robin Roberts previewed "important tips in our Recession Rescue." At the top of 7:30 half hour, she again told audiences to stay tuned for "important tips in this morning's Recession Rescue." Ten minutes later, news anchor Chris Cuomo promised "our Recession Rescue" would give credit advice designed to keep viewers from not missing out on a job. Later in the show, he touted another story on how to save for retirement and labeled it as, that's right, "a good Recession Rescue." Now, certainly, the economy has been struggling and many people are having difficulty, but do words not mean things to the reporters and producers at GMA? Or would they simply shrug their shoulders and say, "Close enough?"
Former top Democratic aide-turned ABC journalist George Stephanopoulos on Tuesday spun Barack Obama's repeated exclusions of Muslims as a way to "combat this issue" that he is a follower of Islam. Reacting to a question by "Good Morning America" co-host Robin Roberts about Muslim voters feeling snubbed by the Democratic presidential candidate, Stephanopoulos admitted that the campaign is distancing itself from anything Islamic.
He then justified, "What the Obama campaign makes no apologies for, though, is trying to combat this issue that's really running around e-mail chains all across the country that Barack Obama is a Muslim. He is not." Stephanopoulos continued, "And they feel that they have to take every possible step they can to combat these rumors." In other words, the fact that the Obama campaign excluded two Muslim women from a campaign rally last week is an understandable reaction for someone trying to "combat rumors?"
On Monday's "Good Morning America," co-host Robin Roberts again interviewed Elizabeth Edwards and lauded her as a "powerful voice" on the issue of health care. The journalist never identified Edwards, the wife of former Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards, as a "liberal voice" on the subject or questioned the rightness of government run health care. Roberts also failed to ask just where the money to fund universal health care would come from.
In an intro, Roberts announced, "[Elizabeth Edwards] has, of course, emerged as a powerful voice in her own right, particularly on the issue of health care." During an April segment, the co-host applauded the "passionate voice" the then-candidate's wife brought to the debate over the issue. On Monday's segment, Roberts only challenged Edwards from the left. Referencing earlier support for Senator Hillary Clinton's universal health care plan, the journalist quizzed, "...You indicated [during the April interview] that you considered Senator Clinton's health care plan a better plan. That you had some concerns about Senator Obama's health care plan. Are you going to partner with him and do you still have those same concerns?"
For the second time in eight months, "Good Morning America" has featured an extremely liberal sexuality author, who blogs on a condom website and touts Democrats, as a neutral expert. On Friday's program, Logan Levkoff, the author of "Third Base Ain't What it Used to be," and a woman who has previously stated she wouldn't rule out giving birth control to elementary school students, appeared to discuss the epidemic of teen pregnancies in Gloucester, Massachusetts. However, GMA never identified the leftist positions of this woman who once wrote a sex column titled "Ask Mistress Lola."
Levkoff explained to co-host Robin Roberts that "our policies are not helping our children." Running down abstinence education, she argued, "And the fact is, we as parents need to get involved and we as schools need to advocate for healthy sexuality education. And that means talking about everything, not just abstinence, because, clearly, even if that's what they're getting that's not what these kids are doing." Levkoff is no moderate voice. She blogs on the Trojan Elexa website and her topics have included celebrating "Blog for Choice Day," bashing President Bush and being "psyched" when the Democrats won back Congress in 2006. Shouldn't it be the responsibility of ABC to identify the extremely liberal perspective that Levkoff operates from?
"Good Morning America" reporter Kate Snow resorted to typical liberal terminology while asking Cindy McCain on Thursday about abortion and "women's rights groups." After observing that her husband, Senator John McCain, has been courting females, Snow simplistically asserted, "...But women's rights groups say once [women voters] discover he's anti-abortion, they may change their minds." So, pro-abortion organizations equal "women's rights groups?"
The interview, which took place in Vietnam where Mrs. McCain has been working with a charity organization, did feature friendly subjects, such as the children of the politician's wife and other topics. But Snow also offered questions that appeared designed to trap McCain. Speaking of Barack Obama, Snow queried, "Would you feel safe with Barack Obama as your president?" After mentioning the lack of interviews Cindy McCain has participated in, the ABC correspondent blurted, "And if [people] say, oh, she's just sort of up there and posing, what would you say to people who think that?" In contrast, "Good Morning America" has delivered numerous softball pieces on the spouses of Democratic presidential candidates.
Chief foreign correspondent for CBS News Lara Logan appeared on Tuesday's "Daily Show With Jon Stewart" to declare that she doesn't watch American news (that would presumably include her own network). She also decried, "If I were to watch the news that you're hearing in the United States, I'd just blow my brains out. 'Cause it would drive me nuts." (How does CBS feel about this?)
What became apparent in the segment was the journalist's distaste for both American journalism, which she is a part of, and her belief that Americans don't really care about Iraq. In addition to answering "no" when asked if she watches the news, host Jon Stewart proceeded to question her about Iraqi violence not getting enough media coverage. The Comedy Central anchor queried, "Have we lost our humanity with this entire situation?" "Yeah, we have," Logan agreed.
On Monday's "Nightline," ABC reporter Jake Tapper challenged Barack Obama over the fact that "there has not been a terrorist attack within the U.S. since 9/11." He pointedly asked Obama to provide an example of when he has actually reached across the aisle to break from Democratic orthodoxy and generally proved that it is possible for the Obama-friendly program to ask tough questions of the Democratic candidate.
After bringing up the Supreme Court's ruling last week that gave legal benefits to enemy combatants, Tapper reminded Obama that there has been no terrorist attack since 9/11. He then quizzed, "...And [the Bush White House says] the reason that is, is because of the domestic programs, many of which you oppose. How do you know that they're wrong?" Tapper also mentioned examples of Senator McCain bucking his own party and challenged, "Have you ever worked across the aisle in such a way that entailed a political risk for yourself?" In contrast, frequent "Nightline" contributor David Wright has previously rhapsodized that Obama rallies are like "Springsteen concerts."
Ex-journalist Linda Douglass, now a spokesman for Barack Obama, admitted in a piece in Monday's Washington Post that she "always" had "fundamental differences" with Republican presidential candidate John McCain. The former reporter, whose long history of liberal bias has been chronicled by NewsBusters, also announced to the Post's Howard Kurtz that she believes "reporters are constantly struggling with themselves to suppress their own opinions," but Douglass personally finds working for Obama to be "really liberating."
The former correspondent for both CBS and ABC denied claims of media bias by oddly citing other journalists as proof she was objective: "It was no secret to the reporters around me that I have Democratic-leaning views. But they said I was always fair." Despite the vouching of other reporters, it should be pointed out that this is the same person who insisted on calling liberal Senator Jim Jeffords a "moderate," knocked President Bush for not being inclusive and opined that although (then) Congressman Bob Dornan was "extreme," he fit in well with the "increasingly conservative Republican Party:"
On Friday's "Good Morning America," former top Clinton aide George Stephanopoulos attacked criticism of Barack Obama as comparable to "the experience of the Michael Dukakis Democratic campaign in 1988, of John Kerry's campaign in 2004." In an apparent dig at the Swift Boat veterans and their criticism of John Kerry, the ex-Democratic official-turned journalist maligned, "In both those cases, the Democratic candidates were attacked by unfair and untrue charges but failed to respond and lost the election." Stephanopoulos, who worked on the Dukakis campaign, didn't mention what "unfair and untrue" changes he was referring to regarding the '88 election.
Both the Stephanopoulos segment and a previous piece by ABC reporter Jake Tapper discussed attacks and "unflattering and untrue" criticism of both Barack and Michelle Obama. Tapper observed that the candidate's wife has made some "controversial comments." However, the GMA reporter, and later Stephanopoulos and news anchor Chris Cuomo, failed to mention what those statements might be. To be fair, Tapper has previously highlighted Mrs. Obama's utterance that, with the 2008 campaign, "For the first time in my adult life, I am proud of my country." But it would have been helpful to have played the clip on Friday's segment. After all, is there not a difference between internet smears that the Illinois senator is a secret Muslim and criticism of actual statements made on the campaign trail?
In order to promote a new climate change special airing this fall, Thursday's "Good Morning America" hyped terrifying future predictions of "more floods, more droughts, more wildfires" and, bizarrely, invited viewers to somehow morph into prophets and "report back" about what life is like in the year 2100. Featuring a slate of global warming alarmists, reporter Bob Woodruff previewed "Earth 2100" and touted the show as "a countdown through the next century" that "shows what scientists say might very well happen if we do not change our current path." An online version of this story hyperventilated, "Are we living in the last century of our civilization?" [Audio available here]
However, the oddest concept of this upcoming special includes a interactive online game that Woodruff claimed "puts participants in the future and asks them to report back about what it is like to live in this future world." Certainly Dan Rather and the ethical machinations of other journalists have lowered the bar of journalism in recent years, but how does one "report" on life in the year 2100? Is ABC providing a time machine? Doesn't "report," in this instance, just mean "making stuff up?"
"Good Morning America" weekend anchor Kate Snow conducted a fawning interview with the "renowned," "fascinating" Gloria Steinem on Sunday's program. Leaving aside any mention of the feminist author's very liberal opinions or her controversial statements, Snow focused only on the issue of whether former presidential candidate Hillary Clinton lost "because she is a woman, because the system was stacked against her as a woman, because America is the way it is for a woman?"
Sounding like a disciple of Steinem, Snow also worried about whether Clinton's failure could harm women. She fretted, "And now that she's not made it, do you think there will be any kind of backlash, then, against women or against the women's movement?" Appearing to be in awe of the feminist, Snow closed the interview by gushing, "So fascinating. We could sit here all day." Perhaps if Snow had actually spent all day with Steinem, she would have found time to wonder if some of the author's more controversial and shocking statements had actually harmed Clinton, such as in March when she derided supporters of John McCain for touting his POW experience as an asset in the presidential campaign. Steinem also told the New York Observer that "from George Washington to Jack Kennedy and PT-109 we have behaved as if killing people is a qualification for ruling people."
On Monday's "Good Morning America," for the fourth time in just two and a half months, the ABC program featured a segment on the so-called pregnant man, Thomas Beatie. Since first reporting the story on March 26, GMA has been fascinated with the case of the woman who had surgery to become a man, but kept her reproductive organs and is now having a child.
On Monday's show, reporter Ryan Owens fretted, "But how will society treat this less than conventional family?" The journalist offered liberal, non-judgmental platitudes such as "Today, Thomas says, different is normal." Spouting more sayings from Beatie, Owens recited, "Love makes a family, he says, and that's all that matters." On April 4, correspondent Andrea Canning lauded the transgendered woman as "the man the world has been waiting to meet." On March 26, GMA news anchor Chris Cuomo, cooed, "Oddity aside, biology aside, it is all about love of this child and as long as that's present, everything else is really going to be normal." Each story avoided what many would consider to be a salient fact: Despite media hype, men do not, in fact, give birth to children.
Even co-host Diane Sawyer seemed to be having trouble with the story. On Monday, she announced, "Beatie, the transgendered woman who became a man and she will -- he will give birth next month."
ABCNews.com reported on Sunday that the network had invited Senators Barack Obama and John McCain to appear in a joint, 90 minute, primetime town hall meeting on ABC. This hardly seems balanced, as ABC has donated 64 minutesworth of town hall air time exclusively to Democrats during the just-ended presidential primary season. This came about through two such events that aired on "Good morning America" on March 26 and July 16, 2007, one with Hillary Clinton and another with John Edwards.
The Republicans, however, had no representation in a GMA town hall. So, what sense does it make to include a Democrat in ABC's first 2008 town hall that would have actually featured a GOP contender? (Yahoo News has reported that the Obama and McCain camps are rejecting of the offer of a joint appearance.) However, if ABC were to argue that McCain has also turned down previous requests for a exclusive town hall, is it likely that Mitt Romney, Fred Thompson, Mike Huckabee or any of the other Republican primary contenders would have all said no to the same free publicity given to Edwards and Clinton?
The first such event featured softball questions from co-host Robert Roberts to Senator Clinton, including a query about whether the former first lady's 1993 plan for universal health care was "ahead of its time." Roberts even allowed Clinton plants from the town hall audience to pose questions:
On Friday's "Good Morning America," Chris Cuomo talked with Hillary Clinton supporter Senator Charles Schumer of New York and sympathized about how tough exiting the campaign must be for the candidate. After observing how some dared describe her failure to immediately endorse Barack Obama a calculating move, Cuomo empathized, "But, you know her. You've been talking to her. How difficult has this all been for her emotionally?"
In an earlier segment, reporter Kate Snow recounted the secret meeting between Senators Obama and Clinton on Thursday. After summarizing in an impressed tone how reporters were camped outside the New York senator's Washington home, Snow marveled, "But somehow, Senator Clinton managed to slip out of her house undetected to meet secretly with Obama at the home of Senator Dianne Feinstein." Yet, in 2003, when President Bush secretly traveled to Baghdad to have Thanksgiving dinner with U.S. troops, the press did not appear as awed. The MRC's Brent Baker recounted the annoyed tone that many journalists adopted in a December 1, 2003 CyberAlert:
Reporter Jake Tapper provided some refreshing balance to ABC's "Nightline" on Wednesday with a snarky, sarcastic look at the people least likely to be chosen as vice president by Barack Obama. He presented a top ten list that included many controversial figures that Democrats would rather ignore. (One such person was Tony Rezko, whose corruption conviction was only mentioned in passing on the show.) Tongue firmly planted in cheek, he speculated, "Number ten would logically be Reverend Wright who would bring energy to the ticket and would be great in a traditional vice presidential role as attack dog. But just who would he attack?" Tapper then cut to a clip of the reverend damning America.
After mentioning Chicago professor William Ayers and how he could be a comfortable VP choice, someone that Obama knows well, Tapper sarcastically noted, "On the minus side, Ayers used to be a fugitive as a member of the domestic terrorist group, the Weather Underground, so he might not pass the vetting process." Highlighting Congressman William Jefferson and Detroit mayor Kwame Kilpatrick as "Obama's indicted super delegates," the ABC journalist mused, " By waiting until the last minute to announce their support for Obama, they showed their loyalty, which is a pro. On the con side, they could soon be cons."
The same network newscasts that hyped the 2005 "alleged massacre" by U.S. soldiers in Haditha are so far ignoring the acquittal on all charges of Lieutenant Andrew Grayson on Thursday. Grayson was accused of attempting to cover up details of the events surrounding a raid that lead to the death of 15 Iraqis. However, Grayson's acquittal was skipped by ABC's "Good Morning America," CBS's "Early Show" and NBC's "Today" show. (CNN's "American Morning" covered the story only as a news brief.)
In contrast, the morning shows seemed much more interested in the subject back when dark allegations were made about the actions of U.S. solders in Haditha. On Memorial Day 2006, then-GMA host Charles Gibson intoned, "America honors its fallen war heroes, but troubling new information about Marine misconduct in Iraq. A new eyewitness on what could be a mass murder of civilians. Was there a cover-up?" On the March 20, 2006, "Nightly News," host Brian Williams touted the "disturbing new allegations" made by Congressman John Murtha about Haditha. (It should be noted that, so far, five of the eight originally charged with murder or cover-up have been acquitted.) On May 25, 2006, referencing the massacre of hundreds of Vietnamese civilians in 1968, "Nightline" host Terry Moran speculated, "Will Haditha be the My Lai of the Middle East?" On June 7 of that year, reporter Andrea Mitchell opined on "Today" that Haditha was a "black eye for American policy."
To mark the 40th anniversary of Senator Robert F. Kennedy's death, "Good Morning America's" Claire Shipman filed a fawning report on Thursday in which she compared Barack Obama to RFK. Splicing together footage of Kennedy and Obama, Shipman noted the "similarities" and nostalgically declared, "The search to shift that mantle, futile of course. But also a quintessentially American desire for, if not a happy ending, some sense of completion."
GMA news anchor Chris Cuomo, son of former Governor Mario Cuomo and himself a member of a famous Democratic family, lauded RFK's daughter Kerry Kennedy (who was featured in the piece) as a "beautiful representative" of a "special and beautiful family." Of course, Cuomo failed to mention that he formally was the brother-in-law of Kerry Kennedy. (The ABC anchor's brother and current Democratic Attorney General of New York, Andrew Cuomo, married and then divorced her in 2003.)
With Hillary Clinton's presidential run apparently over, ABC's "Good Morning America" on Wednesday offered a love letter to the New York Senator. Well known Clinton fan Kate Snow and co-host Diane Sawyer rhapsodized about Clinton's "ground-breaking," "historic" campaign. The segment also featured Hillary poetry from author Maya Angelou. Splicing Snow's audio with Angelou's voice, the GMA reporter enthused, "Maya Angelou once wrote a poem about Clinton. 'She needs to rise. Don't give up on Hillary.'" Angelou then instructed, "Rise. Rise." [audio available here]
Sawyer's introduction to the segment sounded itself like a poem. She extolled the "ground-breaking, crossroads" in which the candidate found herself. After lauding the presidential contender "who ran her campaign on her own terms," Sawyer raved, "This woman, as we said, forged into determination and purpose her whole life.As someone said, no thorns, no throne. No gall, no glory. No cross, no crown." The ABC graphic accompanying the story fawned, "Senator Clinton's Amazing Journey: How She Changed the Face of U.S. Politics." Snow gushed that the presidential bid was the "culmination of a life-long journey." Speaking of the relationship between Bill and Hillary Clinton, she credulously repeated, "But it was a love story that would change the course of [Hillary's] life."
Former journalist Linda Douglass returned to ABC and appeared on "Good Morning America" Wednesday in her new role as a strategist and spokesperson for Barack Obama. Expressing no surprise or conflict that a longtime reporter would segue from recounting the news to representing a Democratic presidential candidate, GMA news anchor Chris Cuomo breezily introduced, "We're going to begin with someone representing Obama, whom we know very well here at ABC News. Linda Douglass, a former, respected journalist, a longtime ABC News family member. But now Linda is an Obama campaign strategist and spokesperson."
Wednesday's GMA featured a gaggle of journalists turned Democrats, Democrats who became journalists and also those with famous liberal families. Cuomo is the son of a former Democratic governor of New York and the brother of the current Democratic Attorney General from that state. And his segment with Douglass followed one with "This Week" host George Stephanopoulos, a former top aide to Bill Clinton. Cuomo, provided some Democratic spin of his own when he asserted that Senator John McCain, by giving a tough speech on Tuesday, did not revel in Obama's history-making moment. In a tease early in the show, he lamented, "But on the Republican side, the nominee John McCain was all business. He was not basking in history last night." While interviewing Douglass, he reiterated, "On a night that was history-making for Obama, McCain did not dwell on history."
Now that all signs point to Hillary Clinton's exit from the presidential race, Tuesday's "Good Morning America" chose to laud both Bill and Hillary Clinton as "iconic" and speculate, yet again, about an Obama/Clinton "dream ticket." Over the span of just ten minutes, various GMA personalities cooed over video of Bill Clinton on a plane gently placing a hand on his wife's face and shoulder.
Co-host Diane Sawyer and reporter Kate Snow each separately lauded this as a "tender moment." In a second segment, Sawyer seemed entranced as she played the video again and haltingly narrated, "When we see that iconic scene on the plane where he's reaching out to her and she's so tired-- She's so clearly tired there." Former top Clinton aide George Stephanopoulos appeared on the program to shill for the "dream ticket" of Obama/Clinton. Perhaps having some kind of inside information, the "This Week" host asserted he's been "betting" on such a pairing all year. Advocating for the wife of his old boss, Stephanopoulos proclaimed, "I think it's the best ticket for the Democrats. I think if Barack Obama picks her, they have the best chance of winning."
On Monday's "Good Morning America," the morning show featured a new religious expert who explained away some of the radical statements heard at Barack Obama's now former church. Father Edward Beck, the host of "Faith Matters Now" on ABC News's video site ABC News Now, also defended Father Michael Pfleger, the latest religious leader to make incendiary remarks at Trinity United Church. (In a video, Pfleger can be heard condemning, "I also believe that America is the greatest sin against God.") Co-host Chris Cuomo prompted, "You say he's much more than how he's being characterized as this kind of bad parody of an African-American preacher. Tell me."
Responding to the softball, Beck justified, "Well, everybody is more than a few sound bites can demonstrate." The two, along with NPR analyst Juan Williams were discussing not only Pfleger, but also the enthusiastic response the mostly African American congregation gave him and (on other occasions) the incendiary Reverend Jeremiah Wright. Again, Beck, who was appearing on GMA for the first time as a religious expert, offered standard liberal guilt by asserting, "But I think you have to understand underneath [the congregation's cheering] there is real sentiment. There is a feeling of being disenfranchised."
ABC's "Good Morning America" on Friday again investigated the issue of whether sexism has handicapped Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign. To do so, reporter Claire Shipman featured a video from the Women's Media Center, a group partnered with the left-wing organization Media Matters. The video featured clips of various journalists harshly attacking Clinton. Shipman didn't mention the connection to Media Matters and simply described the organization as one that "doesn’t endorse a specific candidate" and "has put together a greatest hits video called 'Sexism Sells.'"
In fact, the WMC's website describes the group as "as a non-partisan, non-profit progressive women's media organization [founded] by the writers/activists Jane Fonda, Robin Morgan, and Gloria Steinem." Is it not incumbent on ABC to identify the group's liberal outlook and its connection to Media Matters? At the beginning of the piece, co-host Diane Sawyer solemnly intoned that the possible end of the New York senator's presidential quest "has the Clinton campaign crying foul and even raising questions of sexism. Did that play a role in this campaign?"
"Good Morning America" news anchor Chris Cuomo touted Bush-bashing author and former anti-terrorism official Richard Clarke on Thursday's "Good Morning America." Cuomo lauded Clarke's first book, "Against All Enemies," as "great." (In that book, Clarke slammed the White House for focusing too heavily on Iraq.) The GMA host also attempted to pass off the ex-government official's liberal comments as simple, non-partisan advice from an expert.
During the course of the segment, Clarke lamented the lack of action on global warming, Bush's failure to capture Osama bin Laden and the war in Iraq. A telling indicator of Cuomo's agreement with some of Clarke's liberal points was the way in which the anchor mangled the title of Clarke's new book, "Your Government Failed You." The ABC journalist misstated, "But this is 'Your Government Lied to You' -- failed you, rather."
In what may rank as one of the oddest non sequiturs of the year, "NBC Nightly News" anchor Brian Williams appeared on Wednesday's "Good Morning America" to proclaim "some conservative local newspapers" won't report a cause of death when it's cancer. [audio available here]
Williams stopped by, along with CBS and ABC anchors Katie Couric and Charles Gibson, as part of a new anti-cancer initiative. Williams preceded his bizarre claim by instructing, "Think of the obituaries, just in our adult lifetimes, that didn't mention the 'C' word." Just what is Williams implying? It would help to have some sort of evidence that "conservative local newspapers" are suppressing information on cancer deaths. By "conservative," does Williams mean backwards or superstitious? Whatever the explanation, it certainly seems like another example of a journalist using "conservative" as a synonym for "bad."
On Wednesday's "Good Morning America," co-host Diane Sawyer appeared worried about the upcoming presidential election and repeatedly grilled Democratic strategist and Clinton supporter James Carville about whether Barack Obama will be able to overcome a tough primary and defeat John McCain in November. Asking a question she would ultimately repeat four times, Sawyer fretted, "Should he be the nominee, will Senator Obama beat John McCain? Is there any doubt in your mind that he'll beat John McCain?"
Apparently Carville's prediction of a victory for the Illinois senator wasn't enough. Sawyer doggedly reiterated, "But you're saying he will win?" After the longtime Clinton strategist stated that Obama will win, but Clinton could be victorious by more, Sawyer quickly rebutted, "So, that's not an argument, really. You do think he would win?" While discussing the Democratic National Committee and its upcoming meeting to decide what will be done with the delegates from Florida and Michigan, the ABC anchor anxiously wondered, "If the decision on Saturday means [Clinton] doesn't have the popular vote on June 3rd, must it be over?"
ABC reporter Martha Raddatz openly editorialized on Wednesday's "Good Morning America" that she is "disappointed" in former White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan for not slamming the Bush White House sooner. McClellan, who has written a tell-all book bashing the President, Karl Rove and other operatives, was prominently featured as GMA's top story.
After being prompted by co-host Robin Roberts for her opinion, Raddatz unloaded: "...I'm really surprised....and disappointed." She lamented that as press secretary, "[McClellan] didn't stand up and say wait a minute, I'm not going to say these kind of things anymore. So, we're surprised." Co-host Diane Sawyer could not restrain herself from describing the new book in the most dire terms. In an intro, she breathlessly announced, "A scathing presidential review. One of the President's most loyal political aides turns on him..."
On Friday's "Good Morning America," co-host Diane Sawyer and guest George Stephanopoulos continued the ABC tradition of referring to an Obama/Hillary Clinton match-up as a "dream ticket." In an intro to the piece, Sawyer asked, "Will there be a Obama/Clinton dream ticket?" A few seconds later, she reiterated, "So, dream ticket?" Back on March 6, 2008, Sawyer giddily wondered about the "dream solution" of Clinton and Obama running together on a Democratic ticket. On February 1, GMA correspondent Kate Snow also mused about the possibility of a "dream ticket."
Also, after giving prominent play to a story on Thursday that accused John McCain of close ties to a reverend harshly critical of Islam, "Good Morning America" on Friday allowed only 50 seconds for the senator's rejection of those charges. The Republican presidential candidate has distanced himself from Reverend Rod Parsley and his comments about the Muslim faith. However, GMA featured only a brief discussion between Sawyer and Stephanopoulos on Friday.
"Good Morning America" on Thursday picked up an attack on John McCain that has grown popular in left-wing media outlets and turned it into a Brian Ross investigation of the senator's "pastor problem." In a preview, co-host Diane Sawyer solemnly intoned, "This morning, John McCain's pastor problem. Is the preacher McCain calls a spiritual guide fueling the fire of Muslim hatred in America?" Investigative reporter Ross then preceded to warn how the Arizona senator's appearance with a pastor who loudly attacked Islam has "badly complicated" McCain's attempts to reach out to the Muslim world. [audio available here]
Where did Ross find the various clips of the Reverend Rod Parsley condemning Islam and standing on a podium with John McCain? The story has already been touted in liberal outlets such as Mother Jones magazine and heavily featured on the website Brave New Films,a creation of Robert Greenwald, best known for documentaries bashing Fox News and Wal Mart. (Despite this, Sawyer touted the "exclusive" nature of the investigation.) Additionally, the web version of Ross's story featured a misleading attempt to more closely associate McCain and Parsley. The ABC News headline asserted: "McCain Pastor: Islam Is a 'Conspiracy of Spiritual Evil.'" McCain's pastor? The Republican presidential candidate sought the reverend's support in February 2008. McCain is not a member of Parsley's World Harvest Church in Columbus, Ohio.