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By NB Staff | January 7, 2012 | 5:55 PM EST

Are you following tonight's debate between the GOP presidential candidates broadcast on ABC at 9pm ET? If so, consider joining our community for a live discussion taking place on this post.

As with all NB live events, you are expected to abide by the NewsBusters terms of service. Vulgarity and general obnoxiousness will get you kicked from the chat room. You will need a Flash-enabled browser to participate. You do not need to have a registered NB account to join in, however. Update: We're closing the chat down. Please use this post as an open thread.

By NB Staff | January 7, 2012 | 12:18 PM EST

When Democrats have primary presidential contests, we never hear about "extreme-left, in-your-face liberals," playing to the left-wing base of their party, yet when it comes to this year Republican primary contest, the media are quick to slather the extreme-right label on candidates like Rick Santorum, NewsBusters publisher Brent Bozell noted on the January 6 edition of Fox News Channel's Hannity.

"ABC believes that if you support the traditional family as Rick Santorum does, that makes you in-your-face. CNN believes that it makes you extreme," Bozell complained, arguing that President Obama has the "most radical pro-abortion record in the history of the presidency of the United States" but was never called on it as a liability when facing the American electorate

By Tom Blumer | January 7, 2012 | 10:43 AM EST

The headline New York Times (HT Clay Waters at NewsBusters) after yesterday's job report was: "U.S. Economy Gains Steam as 200,000 Jobs Are Added." At the Associated Press: "Nation adds 200,000 jobs in December hiring surge."

Telling millions of news consumers that it's so doesn't make it so.

By Tim Graham | January 7, 2012 | 8:15 AM EST

The January 9/16 issue of Newsweek has an article on how "America's overconsumption binge has left consumers with piles of unsettled bills. Meet the debt collectors going to scary lengths to collect." That starts on page 52.

Eleven pages later, on page 63, Newsweek shows it's very One Percent in its tastes. Stylist Brad Goreski has a new show on Bravo called "It's a Brad, Brad World," and in the "Want" section they're promoting $3,000 coats and $2,000 table lamps:

By NB Staff | January 7, 2012 | 7:17 AM EST

With Mitt Romney's surprise performance in the Iowa caucuses and new polls showing him widening his lead in New Hampshire, is the race for GOP presidential nominee almost over? If not, who can beat the former Massachusetts governor?

Anything else you want to talk about this weekend?

By NB Staff | January 7, 2012 | 7:08 AM EST

Between the NFL playoffs, basketball, hockey, and Monday's college football championship game, there should be a lot of sports to talk about. So do it!

By Brad Wilmouth | January 7, 2012 | 4:10 AM EST

Appearing as a panel member on Friday's Inside Washington on PBS, Politico's Evan Thomas - formerly of Newsweek - made claims about the existence of "angry, white, middle class" men in the Republican Party who are "seething."

And fellow panel member and Washington Post columnist Colby King accused GOP presidential candidate Rick Santorum of "pandering" to a racist view "that black people are just shiftless, lazy and hands out" because of a recent comment in which Santorum appeared to bring up "black people" who receive welfare benefits, although the former Pennsylvania Senator denies that he used the word "black." (Video below)


By Tim Graham | January 6, 2012 | 11:30 PM EST

Many American leftists are disgusted with Barack Obama – like the ones that told Steve Kroft of CBS that Obama’s a complete milquetoast who offered the store to Grover Norquist. But at the Daily Kos – a website that sincerely compares Dick Cheney to serial killers – the diarist “Troubadour” has boldly offered an article that declares, “Barack Obama: Best President Ever." He began this Friday morning boastfest: "Barack Obama is either the best President we've ever had, or more humbly, equal to the best Presidents we've ever had (and thereby one of their number).” Move over, Mount Rushmore favorites. Obama's the best ever.

Right before the 2010 midterms, this same blogger offered his ludicrous opinion that “Win or lose this election season, Republicans appear to be headed on a one-way path to organized political violence.” He also confessed (quite rightly) that “I am not leadership material...I do not respond appropriately in a timely manner to sudden and emotionally fraught new information.”

By Ken Shepherd | January 6, 2012 | 6:00 PM EST

"The GOP loves a good bogeyman," MSNBC's Martin Bashir complained as he opened a January 6 interview segment on his eponymous program with Cecile Richards, head of the GOP's "favorite target this election cycle," Planned Parenthood.

Bashir proceeded to paint the GOP presidential field, particularly "grenadier Newt Gingrich" as marshaling the forces of misogyny in a "War on Women," as the segment was titled onscreen. The interview amounted to a series of softball questions and leftist talking points to kick start Richards's own recital of left-wing talking points (MP3 audio here):

By Tim Graham | January 6, 2012 | 5:27 PM EST

Listeners to the Bill Press radio show on Thursday morning -- and there were probably not very many -- must have winced at the complete political schizophrenia or logical incoherence of the self-proclaimed "Mr. Gun Control."  Press asked the audience if 18-year-old Oklahoma mom Sarah McKinley was right to shoot a home invader armed with a knife to protect her little boy? He said "damn right" -- and explained how he also favors banning all handguns and "assault rifles." So, um, how would Knife-Threatened Teen Mom defend herself in Bill Press's ideal America?

"I gotta tell you I am Mr. Gun Control, okay?I think there are too many guns. They’re too easy to get. Most people don’t need them," Press declared. "For hunting only I would say as long as they’re licensed and you know how to use them, that’s okay. But for any other reason, I would ban all handguns. I would ban all assault rifles. I’m as strong as you can get." [MP3 audio available here]

By Matt Hadro | January 6, 2012 | 5:10 PM EST

On the campaign trail, Republican candidate Rick Santorum blurted out a word that sounded like "black" and was widely-criticized for making a generalization that black citizens rely on welfare. Though the transcript of the remark is not entirely certain, CNN's Anderson Cooper emphasized the comment anyway with a "Keeping Them Honest" report on his Thursday show.

The title "Keeping Them Honest" implies that the subject is being dishonest, but Cooper admitted that he was grilling Santorum for "what he appears to be saying."

By Scott Whitlock | January 6, 2012 | 4:55 PM EST

MSNBC's Martin Bashir on Friday offered an offensive, bewildering comparison, linking the murder of a black British teenager in 1993 to supposedly offensive comments by Republican presidential candidates in 2012. [See video below. MP3 audio here.]

After referencing the killing of Stephen Lawrence and a U.K. inquiry finding institutional racism in the British police force, Bashir played clips of Republicans, including Newt Gingrich saying this: " President Obama is the most effective food stamp president in American history." Shamelessly using the murder of a teenager to score political points, Bashir excoriated, "Let's cut out the food stamps rhetoric right now before things get any worse."

By Clay Waters | January 6, 2012 | 4:25 PM EST

Reporter Shaila Dewan saw a “head of steam,” enough “to cheer President Obama as he enters an election year,” in Labor Department figures released Friday morning showing the U.S. unemployment rate fell from 8.7% to 8.5%: “Economy Gains Steam as 200,000 New Jobs Added.” Does this mean Dewan will no longer ask, as she did in a 2009 story, "Weren't we working too much, anyway?"

By Ken Shepherd | January 6, 2012 | 4:11 PM EST

Indiana House of Representatives Democrats could incur fines for every day that they refuse to show up to work. Democratic caucus members have threatened to fail to report for duty as a protest against a Republican bill that would make Indiana a right-to-work state.

Reporting the story for the Associated Press today, Tom LoBianco (available here on Twitter) heavily weighed down his report with sob stories about the potential financial difficulty facing Democrats should they boycott the job they were elected to do (emphasis mine):

By Scott Whitlock | January 6, 2012 | 4:02 PM EST

Previewing Saturday's Republican presidential debate, "Good Morning America's" John Berman on Friday offered up "key questions" for how each candidate would do. At one point, he sneered, "How mean for Mitt Romney? Will Romney go after his new chief rival, Rick Santorum, or leave that to his new friend John McCain?"    

A huge graphic showcased a picture of Romney next to bold lettering: "How mean will he get?" ABC doesn't often ask how nasty Barack Obama will be in 2012?