"Good Morning America" hosts and reporters on Monday breathlessly reported the incident of President Bush having a shoe thrown at him during a press conference in Iraq as a "deep insult," an "embarrassing incident" and a "huge insult." Parroting the comparisons made on CBS's "Early Show," GMA news anchor Chris Cuomo reminded viewers of the 2003 toppling of a statue of Saddam Hussein: "You remember when the statue of Saddam Hussein was brought down? When it happened, all of the people there started throwing shoes at it."
As video of that famous footage played, Cuomo narrated, "You see them whacking their shoes against the statue? He's got a shoe. Bam! Bam! Why? Disrespect. It is a high form of insult. So, maybe a window into the mind set." Co-host Robin Roberts helpfully added, "And some of the highest form [sic] of insult in that part of the world."
Former top Democratic aide-turned journalist George Stephanopoulos appeared on Wednesday's "Good Morning America" to downplay the connection between Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich, charged with trying to sell a U.S. Senate seat, and President-elect Barack Obama. He helpfully argued that the profane references to Obama on the FBI's tapes indicate that "Blagojevich himself is the President-elect's best character witness."
Stephanopoulos and co-host Diane Sawyer did discuss the apparent contradiction between Obama's claim on Tuesday that he had "no contact" with the governor and chief spokesman David Axelrod's comments on November 23 in which he asserted, "I know he's talked to the governor." A very credulous Stephanopoulos explained, "Well, first of all, David Axelrod put out a statement late yesterday, where he said he simply misspoke there...That is backed up by everyone else on the team, as well." So, while an ABC graphic read, "Political 'Crime Spree': Will Allegations Affect Obama," the former Clinton aide obviously didn't think so.
The mainstream media aggressively covered the controversies surrounding Republicans such as Mark Foley and Jack Abramoff and speculated about their connections to President Bush and other high profile members of the GOP. So, it will be interesting to see how tenaciously journalists investigate any linkage between President-elect Barack Obama and scandal ridden Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich, now under arrest for allegedly trying to sell the selection of Obama's replacement to the Senate.
ABC Senior White House correspondent Jake Tapper [see file photo above] outlined the connections in a post on Political Punch. It seems that in addition to then-state senator Obama endorsing the Illinois governor in 2002 (Blagojevich returned the favor in 2004), Tapper noted that Obama's insistence on Tuesday afternoon that he "had no contact" with the governor's office on his replacement doesn't match previous comments from the incoming administration. According to senior advisor David Axelrod on November 23, 2008, "I know he's talked to the governor and there are a whole range of names many of which have surfaced, and I think he has a fondness for a lot of them." [Emphasis added.]
[UPDATE: During the 6:30pm ET feed of ABC's World News, Tapper appeared on screen and anchor Charles Gibson asked him about the contacts between Blagojevich and Obama's transition office. But the audio failed and, after two attempts to talk to Tapper, the newscast moved on. Maybe it will be corrected in the 7pm ET feed.]
On Saturday's "Good Morning America," various hosts and reporters gushed over the "exciting," "tantalizing" prospect that Caroline Kennedy could replace Hillary Clinton in the U.S. Senate, should the former first lady be confirmed as Barack Obama's secretary of state. ABC News political director David Chalian enthused that "on top of the new Obama administration that she was a huge proponent and supporter of, it [the appointment] would just rise to this moment of, sort of, a return to that age of Camelot."
Weekend GMA co-host Bill Weir began the segment by wondering, "And who could upstage a Clinton but a Kennedy?" Later, fellow co-host Kate Snow cooed, "So, tantalizing. Kennedys and Obamas and Clintons, all the talk." Clearly agreeing, Weir enthused, "Exciting to talk about."
Actress Meryl Streep, who plays an authoritarian nun battling a "passionate liberal priest" (according to Newsweek) in the new film "Doubt," told the Boston Herald on Sunday that the film is actually a metaphor for those who think the war on terror can be won with force. She argued, "It's about someone who thinks you can control evildoers with force and a firm hand and an unrelenting, 'We will not negotiate (with terrorists).'"
The liberal actress also added, "Or there's another approach, one with all these layers of humanity who think you have to have innocence so it doesn't go bad and get corrupted." Philip Seymour Hoffman, who co-stars in the film as a priest suspected of sex abuse, appeared on Monday's "Good Morning America" as part of a three day promotion that the ABC network is providing for the film. In the interview with news anchor Chris Cuomo, Hoffman somewhat cryptically said of the film, "...Certainty is usually connected to something positive. And doubt is usually connected to something negative. And what if you switch that and what would happen? And the film kind of is looking at those issues." (Reviews of the film suggest it comes down on the side of doubting.)
Appearing on Friday's "Morning Joe," former CBS anchor Dan Rather chided President Bush for not doing enough during his lame duck period and argued for moving Inauguration Day up to December 1. And although Rather didn't explain specifically what Bush wasn't doing enough about (The financial crisis? The terrorist incident in India?), he did hyperbolically fret, "But, we're in possibly, possibly the biggest crisis we've been in since December 7, 1941 and maybe since the time of the Civil War." (As big a calamity as slavery and the dissolution of the Union?)
Addressing the past practice of inaugurating presidents in March, Rather lobbied "Thank heaven, we now swear them in, new presidents, in January. I'd be in favor of moving it up to December 1st."(The former network anchor didn't explain how he would then deal with situations like the protracted 2000 post-election battle.) [Audio available here.]
Sounding like junior high students reveling in their first romance, "Good Morning America" co-host Diane Sawyer and ABC anchor George Stephanopoulos on Thursday celebrated the one month anniversary of Barack Obama's election as president. While talking to the former Clinton aide-turned journalist, Sawyer cooed, "Well, speaking of the President-elect, kind of an anniversary today. 30 days since he was elected."
She continued in a bubbly tone: "So, it's time to launch the first annual, ever, 30-day George Stephanopoulos presidential election awards." Stephanopoulos, of course, had nothing but praise for Obama. He enthused, "So, it's hard to imagine this first month going much better for the President-elect." He also lauded the Democrat for handling "the transition with the same kind of precision and discipline that he managed to show during the campaign."
On Thursday's "Morning Joe," after being told that a critique of his on the auto industry bailout sounded very similar to one made by liberal filmmaker Michael Moore, MSNBC political director Chuck Todd told co-host Willie Geist that he dreaded what the people at NewsBusters would say: "By the way, I can't wait 'til our friends at NewsBusters, you know, compare, compare me to Michael Moore. I appreciate that. I appreciate that, Willie."
The exchange occurred after Todd argued that there was a class warfare reason behind the fact that the October financial bailout seemed to have less resistance than the auto industry rescue plan now being considered. He argued, "We are holding the automakers and the UAW to a tougher standard than, it seems to me, that we held the Citibank guys and, it seems to me, that we held everything that's going on with the white collar bailout on Wall Street." [Audio available here]
He later added, "...And maybe it's because we also don't know anybody that works at GM...We don't know those families. But, we do know somebody at JPMorgan Chase." Geist then played a clip of Moore "making almost the same point you're making right now."
Veteran Washington Post reporter Carl Bernstein appeared on Wednesday's "Morning Joe" and gushed that Barack Obama's appointment of Hillary Clinton to the State Department will benefit from the "real wisdom" Bill Clinton has "when it comes to foreign policy." Continuing to fawn over the President-elect's cabinet choices, Bernstein enthused, "And the real thing about this appointment, though, is that Obama is assembling a group of people to unite the country."
The author of the Clinton bio "A Woman in Charge" optimistically added, "He [Obama] wants a political consensus so he can do what other presidents haven't been able to do, which is to move the country in the direction he wants without division down the middle." Bernstein didn't explain how the liberal senator, who's lifetime American Conservative Union score is seven, would "unite the country."
Over the course of two segments and seven minutes, "Good Morning America" co-host Diane Sawyer on Monday completely ignored the party affiliation of a Kansas City mayor embroiled in a lawsuit over racist remarks and charges of nepotism, at no point identifying Mayor Mark Funkhouser as a Democrat. The only designation of Funkhouser came in the form of a bland, onscreen graphic: "Mayor Mark Funkhouser (Kansas City, Missouri)."
Funkhouser has been battling his own city council since they passed a law barring his wife from working at city hall. Additionally, as Sawyer explained, a former city employee has filed a lawsuit "accusing the mayor and his wife of making racist remarks," such as referring to the African American woman as "mammy." A November 21 Wall Street Journal article, from which the GMA segment is based, managed to label Funkhouser a Democrat in the second sentence.
The "Good Morning America" "hot seat" series concluded on Monday with co-host Diane Sawyer answering silly viewer questions, such as "Which of the seven deadly sins do you do most?" But the segment, which was designed as a way for the ABC morning show hosts to be forced to answer tough queries, never featured any questions related to media bias or other difficult topics. Most of the "hardballs" were closer to this audience e-mail: "What color do you use for your hair? I love your shade of blond."
At one point, co-host Robin Roberts wondered, "Okay, Jill from New Jersey wants to know what is your favorite quote and why?" She then proceeded to play a montage of Sawyer citing various sayings or poems during her GMA segments. One quote that somehow missed being repeated was when the anchor seemingly compared Senator Clinton to Jesus on June 4, 2008: "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.'"
Various "Good Morning America" anchors and guests on Monday gushed at the sheer brilliance of Barack Obama's incoming cabinet, including his "team of economic gladiators." Former top Bill Clinton aide-turned journalist George Stephanopoulos rhapsodized, "We have not seen this kind of combination of star power and brain power and political muscle this early in a cabinet in our lifetimes." (What does that say about Stephanopoulos' friends in the Clinton administration?) [audio clip available here]
Co-host Robin Roberts was equally enthusiastic. Speaking with Stephanopoulos, she cooed, "Some would say it's a team of rivals, a la President Lincoln, or is a better comparison a team of geniuses as FDR did?" Continuing the fawning, Stephanopoulos readily agreed: "Well, one Obama advisor told me what they like is a combination of 'Team of Rivals' and 'the Best and the Brightest,' which was the David Halberstam book about the incoming Kennedy administration. I think there are parallels to all three." (This is somewhat of an odd comparison. Halberstam's 1972 book explores the origins of the Vietnam War and the mistakes made leading up to it.)
Day three of "Good Morning America's" "hot seat" series featured softball viewer questions for co-host Robin Roberts, including subjects such as her iPod and whether she'd ever consider appearing on "Dancing With the Stars." The purpose of the daily segment, which concludes on Monday, is to have the tables turned on the GMA hosts and force the journalists to ask tough questions. More typical were the type of queries that people like Regina from Arkansas posed. Via video, she offered this expose: "Your jewelry is so pretty. I would like to know where you get it."
Just as with past "hot seat" segments, there was one truly interesting question. Meteorologist Sam Champion read a viewer e-mail that probed, "With all of the interviews you have done, is there one you wish you could do over?" Roberts responded by claiming, "There are times I wished I had asked different questions...especially this past political season." Perhaps one such example would be on March 26, 2007. That's when the GMA journalist conducted an episode-long "town hall" meeting with (then) presidential candidate Hillary Clinton in which she allowed the New York senator to talk, uninterrupted or unchallenged, for 18 of 26 minutes.
In an odd, non-sequitur of a segment, co-host Diane Sawyer kicked off the 8:30 hour of Friday's "Good Morning America" by reading aloud from an essay that President-elect Barack Obama wrote about Abraham Lincoln for a 2005 issue of Time magazine. Stopping the show cold for a minute and 22 seconds, she solemnly began, "...There was something that made us all stop and think. And you know, it's 60 days now. 60 days until the inauguration of a new president." [audio available here]
Then, Sawyer gravely announced that Obama had, in fact, written an essay: "And we saw that President-elect Obama has a favorite photograph, which he looks at. And here are the words that he wrote in Time magazine. An essay." To music that seemed reminiscent of the Ken Burns "Civil War" documentary, with images of Lincoln appearing on screen, the GMA host recited the words of the President-elect's Time article.
For the second day in a row, ABC's "hot seat" segment on "Good Morning America" turned into a cringe-inducing display of gushing questions, including a query about Chris Cuomo's underwear habits. The network promoted the series, which kicked off on Wednesday, as a time when GMA's hard-charging hosts would be forced to ask tough viewer questions. An ad touted how weatherman Sam Champion "bravely" went first and exclaimed, "Every morning, they ask the tough questions...So, who will go next and what will they reveal?"
Apparently, the answer is they will reveal things that few want to know. Cuomo received this video question from twenty-something Tara of Pennsylvania: "So, Chris, boxers or briefs?" She then proceeded to suggestively wink. An apparently-not-too embarrassed Cuomo began, "Assuming I have anything on-" before being stopped by co-host Diane Sawyer. [Audio available here.]
On Wednesday's "Good Morning America," ABC weatherman and global warming alarmist Sam Champion went on the "hot seat," a week-long segment on the show designed to force the hosts to answer supposedly tough questions sent from viewer e-mail. However, he ended up fielding softballs such as "Sam, are you really a morning person?" Co-host Diane Sawyer did read one challenging question: "We know you're Mr. Eco-Friendly and you do everything right in the green way. But Anita from upstate New York wants to know what's your biggest offense? Anti-green offense?"
After denying being an eco-elitist and asserting, "There's no perfect," Champion admitted, "My biggest offense?...I'm trying to quit using the plastic water bottle. But I don't always have that reusable water bottle with me." Of course, considering that the segment was designed as a "secrets revealed" piece, there were a number of tough questions that Sam Champion could have been asked, but wasn't. For instance, on January 31, 2007, the liberal meteorologist hyperventilated about global warming next to a graphic that screamed, "Will Billions Die from Global Warming? New Details on Thirst and Hunger." Maybe someone could have suggested that was a slight exaggeration?
Since March 26, 2008, the ABC network has devoted nine segments or 64 minutes and 48 seconds to the "pregnant man" Thomas Beatie, including three stories in the last four days on either "20/20" or "Good Morning America." On Monday, GMA weekend anchor Kate Snow invited Beatie, who was born a woman but kept her reproductive organs after having transgender surgery, to discuss the autobiography "Labor of Love," which recounts the author's first pregnancy and now another. Snow announced that Beatie would be appearing "to tell us what his definition of family and fatherhood is all about."
Since GMA first discussed the story on March 26, the program has gone back to the subject again and again. Despite hyping the transgendered birth, most stories acted as though there was nothing at all controversial about the topic. News anchor Chris Cuomo told a doctor in March, "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."
In part two of "Good Morning America's" Friday interview with former bomber William Ayers, news anchor Chris Cuomo did challenge the ex-'60s radical on whether or not he was a terrorist. But after Ayers contended, "It's not terrorism because it doesn't target people. It doesn't target people to either kill or injure," the journalist failed to offer specifics that would refute that point. Cuomo could have easily cited the example of John Murtagh. He was a child in 1970 when the Weather Underground, founded by Mr. Ayers, placed multiple bombs, one underneath the gas tank of the family car, at the home of his New York judge father.
In a New York Daily News op-ed on April 30, 2008, Murtagh wrote, "I was only 9 then, the year Ayers' Weathermen tried to murder me." However, while not pressing Ayers on specific victims, he did skeptically wonder, "How can a sophisticated academic like yourself believe that the inherent recklessness of exploding bombs that you know too well killed three of your own- you know the potential for deadliness there."
"Good Morning America" news anchor Chris Cuomo on Friday conducted an interview with former bomber William Ayers that qualified as neither a softball or a grilling of the ex-domestic terrorist. Although he did challenge Ayers, he didn't interrupt when the Chicago professor insisted that America fought a "violent terrorist war" or when the '60s radical characterized the U.S. government as murdering thousands "every month" during Vietnam.
Additionally, the online version of the ABC story referred to Ayers as a "campaign boogeyman," while co-host Diane Sawyer in an introduction for the piece defensively explained, "The name of Bill Ayers, William Ayers, was used as kind of a political weapon by the Republicans." During the segment, Cuomo even editorialized that Ayers is now a "respected professor" at the University of Illinois. Respected, perhaps, by leftists and radicals, but many Americans still hold great anger towards Ayers and his terrorist group the Weather Underground. Cuomo also failed to delve into the issue of Chicago Annenberg Challenge (CAC), a liberal organization that Barack Obama served on the board of and was the brainchild of Ayers.
On the other hand, Cuomo did not let Ayers get away with his insinuation that he had no real connection to the now-President-elect. Referring to the often repeated story that Obama began his campaign for the state senate in the living room of Ayers, Cuomo challenged, "You can't say that somebody's a family friend, have them in your house, trying to launch their political career and then say this is nothing." Later, after Ayers tried to minimize the extent of his relationship with the Illinois Democrat, Cuomo retorted, "But, then you have to come clean about saying, 'And I'm one of those people. Barack Obama either sought me out or I sought him out to discuss my ideas, my radical ideas and then he made his own decisions.'" The journalist added, "If that's true, okay. But, it can't be that and, 'We never discussed any of this.'"
On Thursday's "Good Morning America," ABC hosts touted the show's exclusive interview on Friday with bomber William Ayers. During the presidential campaign, the program (and network) largely downplayed or sympathetically reported on the connection between the domestic terrorist and (then) Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama. So, it will be interesting to see if GMA co-host Chris Cuomo grills Ayers or tosses softballs.
An ad for the piece promised "Tough questions asked and answered." Yet, at the end of Thursday's program, Sawyer more sympathetically teased, "And also tomorrow, the man who's name became such a political football during the campaign." On April 17, 2008, "Good Morning America" reporter David Wright minimized the relationship and asserted that candidate Obama was facing questions "about a neighbor of his who was once a member of the violent Weather Underground." (Of course, considering that an Obama staffer described the two men as "friendly" and since Obama accepted a campaign donation from Ayers in 2001, describing Ayers as simply a "neighbor" is rather inaccurate, to say the least.)
In a story about what private school President-elect Barack Obama will send his children to, "Good Morning America" reporter Claire Shipman on Wednesday mostly glossed over the obvious point that the Democrat likely won't be putting his daughters through the D.C. public educational system and also ignored his opposition to vouchers. Instead, she fawned that "the D.C. social world is obsessed with where these new, coolest kids on the block will wind up."
The only mention of public schools came when Shipman asserted, "Whenever there's a new first family with young children, the question always comes up, public or private? And with Washington, D.C. schools still struggling, it can be an especially difficult decision." She then played a clip of Washington Post reporter Jay Matthews explaining the woeful state of D.C.'s public schools. But, nowhere in the piece did Shipman mention the contradiction between Obama's opposition to school choice programs that allow low income students to use vouchers to attend private institutions and the fact that the President-elect and his wife have no intention to send their children to some of those very same schools in Washington.
"Nightline" co-host Terry Moran on Monday fawned over every detail of Barack Obama's White House meeting with President Bush and insisted that that since the President-elect arrived in Washington D.C. wearing sunglasses, this was an example of the "Obama cool on display." Moran, who has regularly gushed over every aspect of Obama's election and transition, narrated the Democrat's interactions with the current president. As video of Bush and Obama played, he breathlessly related, "You could see the power shifting though. Look at Obama putting his arm on Bush's back, letting the President go first."
Moran awkwardly brought up the issue of past commanders in chief who owned slaves and asked, "And you had to wonder that if in fact the [White House] is haunted, what the spirits of those former presidents, many of whom were slave owners themselves would have made of what happened there today?" (An aside: 12 of 43 presidents owned slaves. Is that "many?")
Former top Democratic aide-turned journalist George Stephanopoulos appeared on Friday's edition of the "Oprah Winfrey Show" and agreed with the host that it was "impossible" not to feel exuberant when Barack Obama was declared the winner on election night. Stephanopoulos also repeatedly admitted that he fervently believed all along the Democratic candidate would defeat Senator John McCain. Stephanopoulos' wife, actress Ali Wentworth, also appeared as part of the show's weekly "Oprah Fridays Live" series and asserted that in the spring she asked her reporter husband, "Is Obama going to win? Is Obama going to win? He said, 'Yes. He's going to win.'"
Wentworth elaborated, "And I was texting him during the election. Like, 'Really? Absolutely?' He would say, 'Easily. It's done. Yes.' Which was so- [Stops herself.]" Fellow panelist Mark Consuelos (an actor and husband of Kelly Ripa) also recounted the supposedly neutral journalist assuring him that Obama would be victorious. He explained, "We had dinner together over the summer and I sat next to you....I said, I'm a supporter but I just don't- I - feel nervous that America is not ready to elect, you know, Obama." Consuelos repeated the confident reply: "And he [Stephanopoulos] said, 'November 4, Obama will be elected president. Please pass the rigatoni,' is exactly what he said."
"Good Morning America" co-host Diane Sawyer on Friday uncritically highlighted an address given by the Reverend Jeremiah Wright on Thursday and parroted his talking points about being a scapegoat. In a tease for the segment, she recited, "Reverend Jeremiah Wright is now speaking out again. He says he was turned into a weapon of mass destruction."
Regarding his speech, given in a church in Milford, Connecticut, Sawyer blandly added that Senator Barack Obama "distanced himself from Reverend Wright during the campaign and labeled some of his sermons divisive." She then proceeded to play a 47 second long clip of Wright complaining that the media intended to use his sermons to destroy Obama. An ABC graphic almost apologetically read, "First Comments From Rev Wright: Media's 'Weapon on Mass Destruction'"
"Good Morning America" reporter Claire Shipman continued a time honored media bias tradition on Friday when she mislabeled Congressman Rahm Emanuel, Barack Obama's newly selected chief of staff, as "centrist." Emanuel, who was elected to Congress in 2002, has a lifetime American Conservative Union score of 13.
In 2006, his rank was only four. In contrast, the House member's average from the liberal group Americans for Democratic Action is a very high 96. And yet, Shipman erroneously asserted, "More than anything, the 48-year-old Illinois representative is a pragmatic, centrist politician who likes to get things done. Clearly, Obama wants the same thing." So, can Americans expect Obama to be the same type of "centrist" that Emanuel has been?
Shipman is not the first journalist to try and spin the aggressive Illinois congressman as a moderate. On Wednesday's "American Morning," CNN special correspondent Frank Sesno described Emanuel as someone who is seen to be "on the center to center-right."
"Nightline" reporter Terry Moran extolled Barack Obama's victory celebration on Wednesday's program and insisted that "so many people greeted this election as a human rights milestone and a repudiation of the deeply unpopular President George W. Bush." Reporting from Chicago, the site of Obama's victory celebration, Moran reflected on "the echoes of this moment when America astonished itself and the world again."
Musing about the night, the journalist cooed, "No one who was in Grant Park in Chicago last night will ever forget it. The jubilation. The emotion. The pride." Moran, who has been fawning over Obama for two years, described the election as "a political earthquake, and a moment in American history that millions of people around the world celebrated." He later glowingly elaborated, "People across the world joined the party, seeing in the triumph of Barack Obama, the American capacity to achieve the unthinkable."
According to "Good Morning America" reporter Dan Harris, "No matter how you voted, it's hard to deny that we're having something of a national moment right now" over the election of Barack Obama to the presidency. The ABC correspondent appeared on Thursday's show to explain how the national and international celebration for the Democrat's victory was continuing.
In a tease for the piece at the top of the show, co-host Robin Roberts bubbled that the president-elect "woke up to a chorus of worldwide approval." (At no point did any of the journalists question whether foreign approval over an American president was a good thing or not.) Harris did allow that Obama wouldn't receive a "permanent honeymoon," but co-host Diane Sawyer closed the segment by cooing, "I was saying, my sister in France has people coming up to her and saying, American? Obama!"
"Good Morning America" foreign correspondent Jim Sciutto rhapsodized about international reaction to Barack Obama's victory on Wednesday and described the president-elect as "the winner who's capturing the world's heart." Sciutto described much of the foreign response with the phrase "only in America."
Then, taking a shot at President Bush, he then added, "That's what we keep hearing in so many places around the world, a sense that Barack Obama embodies the American dream, a dream that, frankly, has been tarnished overseas in recent years by a very unpopular war in Iraq, a very unpopular president in President Bush."
"Good Morning America" reporter Bill Weir gushed on Wednesday morning about the "transcendent" reaction to Senator Barack Obama's presidential victory. Discussing Tuesday night's jubilant crowds in New York City, where the ABC program is produced, Weir described the "melting pot of communal joy."
Weir enthused that the celebration was "the kind not seen on New Year's Eve or championship parades. At the crossroads of the world, voices from around the world shouted of the greatness of America." He added, "When the announcement was made, literal dancing in the streets...And people were locking in embraces, watching the speech there as well."
The journalist even recounted how he attempted to remind an African American mother of America's history with slavery. After this woman and her daughter saw a graphic on a jumbotron of all the presidents, one that included Obama as the nation's 44th commander in chief, Weir went over to the pair and attempted to invoke a negative reaction. He explained, "And I leaned over and said, you know, 12 of those men owned slaves. And the mother turned to me and said, 'That stain is washed.'"
Fox News political commentator Juan Williams appeared on a panel for Tuesday's "Good Morning America" to predict that a decrease of Republicans in the Senate could actually make the legislative body more contentious and that a "hard right" minority might be reined in by a defeated John McCain.
After mentioning the possible losses of Senators Elizabeth Dole of North Carolina, John Sununu of New Hampshire and Gordon Smith of Oregon, Williams asserted, "Those are moderate Republicans. And if they're gone, then, suddenly, you have a much more politicized and sort of, you know, antagonistic politics taking place in the Senate when people think, oh, this is an election where we have people coming to the middle."It's not clear who Williams is speaking of when he calls this an election about "coming to the middle." After all, Senator Barack Obama was the third most liberal senator in 2007. Secondly, John Sununu and Elizabeth Dole are not moderates. (The two have lifetime American Conservative Union Scores of 92 and 91, respectively.)