Just minutes after the news arrived that John McCain had selected Alaska Governor Sarah Palin as his vice presidential running mate on Friday, "Today" host Matt Lauer broke into regular coverage and began labeling her as a "staunch conservative" and a "stalwart conservative." The "Today" show has, thus far, avoided using ideological labels for Barack Obama's running mate, Joe Biden, during this week's Democratic convention.
And although many members of the media have resisted pointing out Obama's inexperience, Lauer immediately seized on the subject for Palin and used Quayle-like "heartbeat away" terminology: "We have a 72 year-old nominee of the Republican Party and the vice presidency...This is a position of a heart beat away and how are people going to feel about Sarah Palin in that situation?" NBC political director Chuck Todd replied by asserting how McCain is "rolling the dice on this. He's absolutely gambling."
"Today" host Matt Lauer scored an interview with "Daily Show" host Jon Stewart for Thursday's show and praised the liberal comic as "one of the most respected and listened to political voices in this country." Continuing his fawning profile, he attributed a rise in the number of young people voting, in part, to the work of Stewart. It was just after that exchange that the comedian jabbed at Republican John McCain.
He asserted the increase in young voters was due to the fact that in this election, "...It helps to have some candidates, you know, who are not necessarily Matlockian," referring to TV character Ben Matlock, played by Andy Griffith and popular with older Americans. Now, it's one thing to say that Stewart's funny, but respected? By liberals, perhaps, but it's obvious that much of his appeal to members of the media derives from his partisan, relentless bashing of conservatives and Republicans. Tom Brokaw, another NBC luminary, wrote a profile on the comic for the April 18, 2005 issue of Time in which he rather ridiculously referred to the Comedy Central host as "our Athenian, a voice for democratic ideals and the noble place of citizenship, helped along by the sound of laughter." [Emphasis added]
"NBC Nightly News" anchor Brian Williams conducted an embarrassingly fawning interview with Michelle Obama on Wednesday's program regarding the subject of nasty Republicans and just how exciting the Democratic campaign is. At one point, he sympathetically questioned the politician's wife, "What of the attacks has busted through to you? What makes you angriest at John McCain, the Republicans? What's being said about your husband that you, you want to shout from the mountain tops is not true?"
More of the gushing interview aired on Thursday's "Today" show. During that segment, Williams cooed, "How often do you allow yourself to sit back and say, 'I can't believe this is happening? I can't believe we're doing this?'" Neither piece featured any tough questions. More representative were softballs about whether Mrs. Obama knows her husband will win or simply thinks it might happen.
Luke Russert, son of the late Tim Russert, appeared as a correspondent on Wednesday's "Today" show to tout the technological superiority of the Barack Obama campaign and its "online political revolution." Co-host Meredith Vieira pronounced the 23-year-old's reporting "terrific," but really the segment was just another puff piece on liberals such as Obama and Bill Clinton. Regarding the latter, Russert recounted meeting the ex-president at the Denver Democratic convention and being asked by Clinton how his Senator wife's speech went. Russert replied, "Well, judging from the crowd, pretty damn good."
The bulk of the segment featured Russert interviewing Jayron Finan, a new supporter of the Illinois senator and a Democratic delegate. Russert explained "Inspired by Obama's stand against the war and his less confrontational political style, she visited his website and got involved." Continuing to repeat talking points and cliches, he added, "As she heads to the convention hall, Jayron believes that bringing new blood to the political process is the best way to bring about change."
On Wednesday's "Today," frequent MSNBC contributor Mike Barnicle filed a fawning, credulous report on "Amtrak Senator" Joe Biden and his daily habit of taking the train home from Washington D.C. after completing his duties in the U.S. Senate. Barnicle, who accompanied Biden during one of these trips back to Delaware, seemed to be repeating talking points when he touted how the journey keeps the politician grounded: "The train ride also had another benefit: Keeping him in touch with real people and his working class Irish Catholic roots."
After listing what political pundits think are Biden's strengths, the journalist cooed, "But for the Amtrak Senator, it's about working people he feels a part of." As though he were narrating one of the promotional videos that have been used to introduce speakers at the Democratic convention, Barnicle pivoted off a comment by Biden that one doesn't need a focus group for most political issues. The MSNBC personality extolled, "All you need, says the presumptive Democratic nominee for vice president, is a seat on a train that takes you home every night."
During an interview on Monday, "Good Morning America" news anchor Chris Cuomo fawned over liberal icon Jimmy Carter and his support for Barack Obama's candidacy. After Carter touted how much excitement the Illinois senator creates wherever he travels, Cuomo cited his GMA colleague Diane Sawyer and eagerly agreed: "You know, Diane said once on this show that maybe a simple test for who's the right choice for president is somebody who makes the statement, America, wow!" (One wonders if this "simple test" would have been applied to Ronald Reagan and his 49 state landslide.)
Cuomo, who is the son of former Democratic governor of New York Mario Cuomo and the brother of the state's current Democratic attorney general, proceeded to fret about why Barack Obama, "with all the Obamamentum and all of the media attention and all of the charisma that he is said to have, how do you explain this contraction in the polls from 15 points now to a dead heat even in the big states?"
On Tuesday's “Today” show, co-host Matt Lauer practically dared John McCain spokesperson Nicole Wallace to challenge the narrative created by Michelle Obama in her speech during the previous night of the Democratic National Convention. Lauer cited Mrs. Obama's goal as trying to “put to rest some of the stories that have been going around, and a lot of them being talked about on conservative talk radio, about her lack of patriotism.”
The NBC host then challenged Ms. Wallace, “So, let me ask you on the record, how she did, and does the McCain campaign doubt her love of country?” Of course, Lauer offered no specifics as to what he meant by “some of the stories that have been going around,” nor did he mention the now famous quote of Michelle Obama asserting that “for the first time in my adult life I am proud of my country,” thus making it sound as though conservatives were just making things up about the candidate's wife.
Previewing the first night of the Democratic convention on Monday's "Situation Room," host Wolf Blitzer and a network graphic repeatedly identified the announced speakers as liberal. The CNN anchor asserted, "The speaker lineup for tonight, by the way, here at the convention, includes some of the party's most prominent and most liberal members, including the House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Senator Ted Kennedy and former President Jimmy Carter."
Blitzer then asked guest James Carville if "...highlighting all these liberals tonight, is that the way these Democrats can reach out to moderates, to independents and say, you know what, it's time for a change?" Carville praised the work of cancer-stricken Senator Ted Kennedy and predicted high emotion. Fellow guest, conservative radio host Bill Bennett, replied, "Oh, it's their party and they can be emotional or cry if they want to or be liberal if they want to."
Now that Barack Obama has chosen Joe Biden as his vice presidential running mate, will liberals in the media question the Delaware senator about a Washington Post interview from October 2007 in which he cited low minority population as a reason Iowa schools are performing better than those in Washington D.C.?
Biden asserted in the October 25, 2007 article, "There's less than one percent of the population of Iowa that is African American. There is probably less than four of five percent that are minorities. What is in Washington? So look, it goes back to what you start off with, what you're dealing with." [Emphasis added]
The Post reexamined the quote in a generally positive editorial that ran on Sunday. The paper took pains to note that in 2007, "The Biden campaign quickly issued a statement asserting that the candidate was referring to socioeconomic status, not racial differences." The editorial proceeded to simply chide Biden for being too free with his comments.
To kick off coverage of the Democratic National Convention on Monday, "Today" host Matt Lauer actually posed some challenging questions to Barack Obama's communications director, Robert Gibbs. The NBC host cited examples of newly minted vice presidential candidate Joe Biden praising John McCain's leadership and pointedly asked, "So, now, if Joe Biden goes on the attack against John McCain, isn't he going to come off sounding like just another politician who will do and say anything to get elected?"
Referring to reports that Biden has been warned to stay on message and not go off on verbose tangents, Lauer quizzed, "Can you take me through that warning? Who had the talk with Joe Biden?" After not getting an actual answer from Gibbs, he followed-up: "Well, but as communications director, it's your job to manage the message now coming out of both of these candidates, so wouldn't you have been involved in that discussion?"
Of course, the morning program did feature some typical examples of liberal talking points. A segment with reporter Ann Curry highlighted a clip of liberal historian Doris Kearns Goodwin discussing Barack Obama's speech and spinning, "He's still not that well known in parts of the country and because he [Obama] has been caricatured by the other side, his speech is probably more important than most acceptance speeches are."
On Thursday's "Good Morning America," the ABC morning show provided a detailed account of an 85-year old great grandmother who thwarted a burglar by pulling a gun on him and then kept the criminal at bay while waiting for police. CBS's "Early Show," however, has thus far ignored the story. On NBC, "Today" provided a scant 15 second news brief on Wednesday.
GMA co-host Robin Roberts appeared impressed with Pennsylvania resident Leda Smith. She interviewed the grandmother and listened as the senior citizen recounted arriving home to find someone inside her house: "...I had my gun under a cushion on a chair. I picked up the gun. I turned around and I snapped it shut and I cocked it and when I did that, he turned around and his eyes were kind of big and he said, 'I didn't do it! I didn't do it!'"
Generally, the three network morning shows have shown an aversion to positive gun news. In late June, when the Supreme Court historically declared that the Second Amendment is an individual right, "Good Morning America," "Today" and "The Early Show" devoted a combined three minutes and 33 seconds of coverage. Back on June 27, the day after the decision came down, "Early Show," which skipped any reporting of the armed grandmother, featured a mere 30 seconds on the Supreme Court's ruling, a total that came nowhere near the four minutes they used to discuss how to Feng Shui your house for pets.
"Nightline" co-anchor Cynthia McFadden interviewed Pastor Rick Warren on Monday about the presidential forum he held with Senators Barack Obama and John McCain and pestered him to just admit that he's a Republican. At one point, she goaded, "You know, there are some people who feel that this is kind of a sham operation. That really, we know you, as an evangelical, are a Republican, a John McCain supporter."
Warren responded by asserting he's a registered independent, but the ABC correspondent kept trying to pin the pastor and author down as a GOP supporter. Speaking of Warren's parishioners and his own preference, she queried, "But do you feel like at some point, Rick, you owe the people who look to you for guidance more than that? I mean at some point before this election are you going to get up--" After Warren interrupted and replied that he wouldn't be telling anyone who to vote for, McFadden followed-up: "So if someone were to come to you and say, you know what, forget character, I'm going to vote for the guy who is opposed to abortion, would you say they need to go back and think a little harder?"
On Monday's "Good Morning America," weekend host Kate Snow interviewed Bill Clinton in Rwanda and at one point told him he didn't have to answer a quasi-tough question. Towards the end of her interview, she prefaced this query by almost apologizing: "Pretty simple question. And maybe you don't want to answer it right now and I respect that fully. But, if you want to answer it, do you personally have any regrets about what you did campaigning for your wife?"
She also allowed the ex-president, who is touring Africa in support of his charity, to get away with a total non-answer about Barack Obama's competency. After Snow asked if the Illinois senator is ready to be president, Clinton spun, "You could argue that no one is ever ready to be president." He went on to discuss how he learned things on the job, how the presidency is full of pressure. Clinton finished his evasive response by admitting that Obama can "inspire" and by observing in a a tone that sounded slightly condescending, "And he's smart as a whip, so there's nothing he can't learn."
Now, you would think that Snow would realize that she just asked Bill Clinton if Obama was qualified and the ex-commander in chief declined to say yes. But, there was no follow-up.
On Friday's "Good Morning America," news anchor Chris Cuomo derided John McCain's campaign manager for a "frivolous, childish" ad comparing Barack Obama to a celebrities such as Paris Hilton and Britney Spears. Cuomo, who is the son of former New York Democratic Governor Mario Cuomo and the brother of the state's current Democratic attorney general, even tried to goad Davis into pledging to not run any similar ads in the future.
He prompted, "...Your candidate started by saying he wanted to run a different type of campaign. Do you want to put out a pledge? No more ads like this? Let's leave the personal alone. Let's talk about what we'll do for America." He also played a clip of McCain pledging to run a respectful campaign and then complained, "So that's what we expected from John McCain...What's going on here?"
The hosts and correspondents on Thursday's "Good Morning America" did not hold back in expressing their displeasure over a new John McCain ad that depicts Barack Obama as a celebrity and compares him to Britney Spears and Paris Hilton. Co-host Diane Sawyer hyperbolically derided the spot as a "political nuclear attack" and asserted that the campaign is taking "a strange new turn."
GMA news anchor Chris Cuomo seemed equally flummoxed. He opened the show by asserting, "Some odd campaign news today. There's a round of new campaign commercials that really have us scratching our heads here." A bewildered Sawyer agreed: "What sort of committee meeting do you have where you say, 'Let's use Britney!' 'Let's use Paris!' Yes, that'll be a blow!" In a second segment, former Clinton aide-turned journalist George Stephanopoulos claimed the commercial could be seen as "angry, cranky, too negative" and McCain himself might be viewed as "a bit of a whiner given the fact that most polls that he is behind."
During a segment on Wednesday's "Good Morning America" about the selection of vice presidents and what goes into the choice, reporter Claire Shipman gushingly introduced a clip of Al Gore's wisdom on the subject. She fawned, "But the man who is often named as the best choice in modern history, and who orchestrated a great choice himself, has some key advice."
Shipman didn't say who, exactly, considers Gore the best selection in history. She also failed to point out that Joe Lieberman, the Democrat tapped by Gore in 2000, wasn't elected vice president. So, how would one qualify that as a "great choice?" Earlier in the piece, the GMA correspondent lauded the "emotional history of picking the first Jewish running mate [Lieberman]," the "bold move of two young southerners [Bill Clinton and Gore] and blandly noted George W. Bush's selection of Dick Cheney as a "surprise."
When a USA Today poll found Barack Obama holding a six point lead over John McCain in late June, the newspaper trumpeted, "Poll: Obama Has Edge Over McCain." But when a USAToday/Gallup survey resulted in a four point spread for the Arizona senator, the July 29 print headline mildly offered, "Doubts, Divisions Seen in Tight Race."
The online adaption of Tuesday's article featured a more balanced take. It read, "McCain gains on Obama in poll" and both versions cited the Republican's improvements in the first sentence. But headlines are sometimes all people see. And there's a big difference between an "edge" and "doubts" and "divisions."
"Good Morning America" correspondent Claire Shipman on Tuesday actually suggested that Americans "pitch in" $2000 to help pay off the deficit or even give up their lattes. Reporting on the news that the U.S. federal deficit is projected to rise to $482 billion in 2009, Shipman seriously proposed: "Now, we came up with a few GMA solutions to try to put this in perspective. If every American were to pitch in $2,000, we could pay off this year's deficit."
Continuing the absurd "solutions," Shipman elaborated, "Or, if we handed over, each of us, 500 gallons of gasoline or, in terms we could all really understand, if every American gave up 666 lattes for a year, we could pay off this year's deficit." Leaving aside the slightly demonic 666 suggestion, there was one piece of advice left out of the ABC reporter's piece: At no point did she talk about wasteful government spending or the possibility of cutting back on entitlement programs. Shipman also took a shot at President Bush, calling the deficit "a parting gift from one president to the next of the most unwelcome sort." Conservatives may have complained about some of Bush's spending, but he certainly didn't act without the help of many Democrats in Congress.
According to ABC reporter Jan Crawford Greenburg, the co-chair of Barack Obama's vice presidential search committee, Caroline Kennedy, is a "a reluctant media star, stepping into the spotlight to back a man she says reminds her of her father [President John F. Kennedy]." Appearing on Monday's "Good Morning America" to discuss Kennedy's role in the selection process, Greenburg gushed, "Caroline Kennedy was, for a brief moment, the princess of Camelot."
The ABC correspondent even closed the segment by eagerly speculating as to whether the Illinois senator would take a cue from George Bush's 2000 choice: "Now, think about this: Eight years ago George Bush ended up choosing the head of his VP search team Dick Cheney to be his running mate. So, if Obama took a page out of that playbook, imagine this ticket, Obama/Kennedy."
During a joint press conference between Barack Obama and Nicolas Sarkozy in Paris, CNN reporter Christiane Amanpour bizarrely connected the Illinois senator with a 2005 comment by then-Interior Minister Sarkozy that French rioters were "scum." She asked the now-president of France, "And I'm wondering whether you feel, today, when you stand next to someone you clearly admire so much, and who has broken so many barriers, that you regret that term or that you wish you hadn't said it?"
Amanpour never made clear the odd link she seemed to be making between Obama and the "scum" rioters, other than to begin by stating, "Mr. President Sarkozy, you know that in France, the presence of Barack Obama and what he's done in terms of breaking the barriers in the United States has, sort of, made a resurgent black consciousness movement here." President Sarkozy deftly handled the CNN reporter's question. He began with this jibe: "Thank you, madam, for your exceptional knowledge of French political life and your contribution to friendship among peoples." Maintaining a smile, the president added, "...And I'm so glad that you should mention in front of Barack, a situation that prevailed before I became president in France."
Former Bill Clinton aide George Stephanopoulos firmly declared Barack Obama's trip a "clean success" on Friday's "Good Morning America." "You just cannot take that away from him," the "This Week" anchorproclaimed. Responding to a question by co-host Diane Sawyer about the visit's elaborate pageantry, Stephanopoulos asserted, "I don't think there's much risk of a backlash here."
Despite the accolades of success, Sawyer, in a worried tone, pointed out: "...Because you have this disconnect between what we see overseasand the fact that some polls are softening here at home in some key states." (She then cited new polls showing McCain leading in Colorado and pulling to within two in Minnesota.) In a previous segment, correspondent Jake Tapper continued his contrarian reporting on Obama's European tour. After highlighting the large crowds for the Democrat's speech in Berlin, he discussed John McCain's campaign back in the U.S. and, in a snarky jab at the Illinois senator, pointed out: "McCain supporters were fewer in number but they're actually able to vote in America."
On Wednesday, "Nightline" co-host Cynthia McFadden and correspondent David Wright condescendingly reported on the disparity in the media's coverage of Barack Obama and John McCain. McFadden began a segment on the Arizona senator by snidely asserting, "Now, if you have a younger sibling, you can probably relate to what Senator John McCain has been going through this week. Whatever he does, everybody seems to be talking about the new kid in town."
Expanding on a report he filed for the July 23 "World News," Wright, in an almost embarrassed tone, remarked, "Pity the poor Straight Talk Express. While, Barack Obama is off globe-trotting, grabbing all that high profile, high octane attention, we're here on the tarmac in Allentown, Pennsylvania." He also described the media's obsession with Obama in a passive tone, asking McCain, "Do you kind of feel like you're going to be stuck playing defense from now until November?" and stating, "...It seems like the narrative of this campaign is being driven by whatever Senator Obama does and you're left to kind of react to that." Wright confidently predicted that in the next few days, "What can you almost guarantee he [McCain] will be talking about? Obama." Something, one assumes, people like David Wright will make happen.
Not every reporter covering Barack Obama's world tour is entranced by the words and imagery of the Democratic candidate. On Thursday's "Good Morning America," political correspondent Jake Tapper jabbed at Obama's overconfidence, describing the senator's July 24 speech in Berlin as "one the Obama campaign is billing at almost presidential. Even though he is not the president."
Reporting from inside the Obama plane, Tapper complained in a snarky tone, "Inside, the plane has been redesigned to separate the senator and his staff from us lowly reporters." He added that Obama officials told journalists that they could brief reporters as anonymous officials. Tapper grumbled, "One of them said that's what we did at the White House during the Clinton years. We pointed out they don't work at the White House." Regarding the Obama plane, the ABC journalist also pointed out: "The American flag on the tail wing has been replaced by an enormous Obama O."
"Good Morning America" news anchor Chris Cuomo launched an unlikely attack on liberal comedian Jon Stewart during Thursday's show. After discussing possible media bias against John McCain, and playing a clip of the "Daily Show" host mocking the senator, Cuomo warned, "I'll offer you the other side. You gotta be careful of friends like these with Stewart. Clearly a lefty. Clearly pro-Obama."
Referring, presumably, to McCain's nearly even status in many polls, Cuomo continued, "A lot of this country may not feel the same way. May be a little bit of a reflection. You know? Kind of trying to come to McCain's aide 'cause everyone else seems to be for the other guy." Co-host Diane Sawyer concurred, noting the tightness of the race. She also casually admitted to the media's obsession with Obama: "...They keep pointing out in the McCain camp that he's taken three foreign trips in the past four months and not one network anchor joined him and all three show up for Obama." Of course, the GMA anchor didn't continue that thought any further, examine the significance of her admission or even Cuomo's comment that "everyone else seems to be for the other guy."
"Good Morning America" on Wednesday continued to aggressively promote the story of the pregnant "man," featuring the show's sixth story since March 26. Once again, GMA co-host Chris Cuomo confusingly described the story of Thomas Beatie, a woman who took testosterone and had her breasts removed in a gender reassignment surgery in order to become a man.
On Wednesday, Cuomo explained, "The pregnant man, Thomas Beatie. He made headlines across the globe. Well, now, Beatie, who is biologically still a woman, has delivered a healthy baby." So, in other words, a woman gave birth to a baby? Perhaps describing the situation that way wouldn't have allowed GMA to devote six stories (thus far) to the topic. The segment was full of such puzzling statements. An ABC graphic screamed, "Pregnant Man's Baby: First Pictures of Susan Juliette." At one point, reporter Andrea Canning stated that Beatie, born Tracy LaGondino, had her breasts surgically removed and then, "...Still hoping to one day have a child, Thomas kept his female reproductive organs." His female reproductive organs?
New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman appeared on Wednesday's "Good Morning America" to gush that the very act of Barack Obama going on his Middle East trip makes one think "he comes back a little wiser, a little smarter." Friedman also asserted that the candidate's middle name, Hussein, would be a plus for him as president. He opined, "I was in Cairo a few weeks ago. And one of things that was so striking is how impressed Egyptians were, simply with the prospect that after 9/11, Americans might actually elect a man whose middle name was Hussein."
(Of course, members of the media became apoplectic when radio talk show host Bill Cunningham used Obama's middle name at a campaign rally for John McCain. In this case, apparently, it's okay.) GMA co host Diane Sawyer set up the Friedman critique by very carefully offering qualifiers about how "we know [Obama] is absolutely American. Absolutely a Christian." She then offered up the new spin that Obama's heritage could be a presidential positive: " ...But in the greater Arab world, does his parental history, his father's history, mean he can move the Arabs more than someone else might be able to?"
Journalist George Stephanopoulos and ABC's Diane Sawyer rhapsodized over Barack Obama's Middle East trip on Tuesday's "Good Morning America." Stephanopoulos swooned that the visit to the region was going "better than they could have imagined in the Obama campaign." He then proceeded to narrate footage of the Democratic candidate.
While video of Obama playing basketball with troops in Kuwait appeared onscreen, Stephanopoulos fawned as Obama made a shot, "...How much better can you get than that? Look at that. Right in the hoop on the first try." Agreeing, Sawyer cooed, "How sweet." With no apparent sense of irony, Sawyer, the GMA co-host, also brought up the complaints that the media have uncritically covered the trip. After playing a clip of a McCain appearance with George H.W. Bush, in which the former president joked that the candidate is "a little jealous" of all the attention Obama is getting, Stephanopoulos agreed: "[McCain] is a little jealous."
"Good Morning America" co-host Diane Sawyer on Monday quizzed John McCain on whether the media is gushing too much over Barack Obama's Middle East trip. She then proceeded to cite Obama talking points on the visit. First, Sawyer wondered, "A quick question about the press coverage, if I can. [Obama's] there with a lot of reporters and it's been widely reported--" At this point, the Arizona senator started chuckling to himself.
A surprised Sawyer continued, "You're laughing. Do you think the press coverage is unfair?" McCain wryly responded, "That's up to the American people to decide, Diane. It is what it is." A few seconds earlier, Sawyer appeared to preemptively answer her query on media bias. The ABC journalist prompted, "You have criticized Senator Obama in the past for not going to Iraq and getting a fresh assessment. He is in Iraq as we speak this morning. Does this take care of it?" The subtext of the question sounded very much like "He went to Iraq. Will you leave him alone now?" Never mind the fact that McCain has been to the area eight times and Obama only two.
"Good Morning America," in what is surely a sign of things to come, prepped for Barack Obama's first Middle East trip by focusing three stories on the subject, including one in which George Stephanopoulos admitted that John McCain is "frustrated" by the media attention given to the foreign excursion. GMA co-host Robin Roberts and the ex-Clinton aide discussed the media coverage briefly, in a passive voice.
Referring to Obama's visit next week to Iraq and Afghanistan, Roberts casually wondered, "And finally, how does McCain counter all of this attention that Obama is going to be receiving on this trip?" Stephanopoulos candidly responded, "The McCain campaign is very frustrated by this. As you know, all three evening news anchors going over to -- on this foreign soil with Barack Obama. They know he's going to get a lot of attention." Notice it's "all of this attention that Obama is going to be receiving" rather than "all the coverage we're giving him." And if the McCain camp is "frustrated" by the coverage, isn't that a subject that Roberts and Stephanopoulos should have explored? They didn't.
[Updated] "Good Morning America" reporter Claire Shipman on Friday worried that Al Gore's occasional kind word about John McCain might result in the election of the Republican. Interviewing the former vice president about his new energy proposals, the ABC correspondent fretted, "...And some Democratic eyebrows have been raised at your praise of John McCain. Democrats worried that maybe you're, you're going to help him get elected."
That question, which hit Gore from the left, was one of the few, even slightly challenging queries. Instead, Shipman tossed softballs, such as asking, "Do you think that, right now, climate change is as much a threat to our country as terror?" The ex-VP asserted that "the climate crisis is by far the most serious threat we have ever faced" and Shipman offered no follow-up. She failed to ask Gore for some sort of evidence to back up this claim or to point out that terrorism killed 3000 people on 9/11 alone. (How many have died from the "climate crisis?)