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By Ken Shepherd | December 15, 2011 | 4:02 PM EST

You'd think a former Catholic seminarian would be happy about Christian athletes who are unashamed to publicly praise Jesus Christ. But then again, this is Bill Press we're talking about.

Our friend Brian Maloney at Radio Equalizer notes how the left-wing talker and CNN Crossfire alumnus declared on his December 15 radio program that the Denver Broncos quarterback should shut the [expletive] up:

By Tim Graham | December 15, 2011 | 2:43 PM EST

The cover story of Tuesday's USA Today blared "Resurgent Republicans close gap in key states." Susan Page reported a new USA Today/Gallup poll of 12 battleground states found "the number of voters who identify themselves as Democratic or Democratic-leaning in these key states has eroded, down 4 percentage points, while the ranks of Republicans have climbed by five points." GOP voters were also found to be more attentive to the campaign, more enthusiastic about the election, and more convinced the outcome matters. ABC, CBS, NBC coverage? None.

Gallup also found "Americans' concerns about the threat of big government continue to dwarf those about big business and big labor, and by an even larger margin now than in March 2009. The 64% of Americans who say big government will be the biggest threat to the country is just one percentage point shy of the record high, while the 26% who say big business is down from the 32% recorded during the recession." Network coverage? None. On Wednesday morning's Early Show CBS reporter Jan Crawford found only the Gallup result that would discourage Republicans:

By Clay Waters | December 15, 2011 | 2:23 PM EST

After trashing his warnings of a potential nuclear-based EMP (electromagnetic pulse) attack, Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich’s policy prescriptions are once again in the sights of the New York Times. Campaign reporter Trip Gabriel suggested Gingrich had a simplistic vision of the Iran threat in Thursday’s “Gingrich’s Foreign Policy Words Summon the Cold War, but Enemy Is Iran.”

By Iris Somberg | December 15, 2011 | 1:32 PM EST

When MRC’s Business & Media Institute pointed out that the latest Muppet Movie featured the tired Hollywood cliché of a rich oil man as the villain, left-wing bloggers and comedians ran to the Muppets’ defense. Now Jon Stewart has picked up the mantle. On the Dec. 14 episode of “The Daily Show,” Stewart railed against the Muppet critics, “There are so many controversies this holiday season, but of all of them, only one is the stupidest.”

In a five minute segment, Stewart went after what he deemed the “stupidest” controversy, and brought on guest John Hodgman to defend liberal Hollywood films. That of course devolved into mockery of movies and creatively edited clips such as a “Profitar” spoof based on “Avatar.” (See Video Below)

By Scott Whitlock | December 15, 2011 | 12:55 PM EST

Twenty four hours after linking Mitt Romney to the Ku Klux Klan, MSNBC's Thomas Roberts apologized for his "appalling" smear. The News Live host on Thursday waited until the show was 50 minutes over and then conceded, "During yesterday's 11am, we reported on a blog item that compared a phrase used by the Romney campaign to one used by the KKK in the 1920s."

He continued, "It was irresponsible and incendiary of us to do this and showed an appalling lack of judgment. We apologize to the Romney campaign." On Wednesday's show, Roberts slimed, "Plus, what Mitt Romney has in common with the KKK. Details on a rare Romney campaign blunder ahead."

By Kyle Drennen | December 15, 2011 | 12:53 PM EST

Opening NBC's Nightly News on Wednesday, anchor Brian Williams touted the U.S. troop withdrawal from Iraq as an Obama administration accomplishment while slamming the war effort itself: "The President promised they'd be out by New Year's Eve and here they come....The war started with the event somebody called 'shock and awe' and it became a tragic and prolonged slog."

In the report that followed, White House correspondent Kristen Welker announced: "Mr. Obama has opposed the war since his days as a state senator. And today he said it's harder to end a war than to begin one....The President, facing a tough re-election battle, did not declare victory in Iraq, but has called the withdrawal a campaign promise kept."

By Ken Shepherd | December 15, 2011 | 12:21 PM EST

A new Associated Press poll finds movement by crucial swing voters towards Republican-friendly economic priorities: budget cuts over Democrat-preferred tax hikes.

But in reporting on the news wire's poll, the AP's Laurie Kellman opened her story with a focus on numbers that show the  popularity of extending the Social Security payroll tax holiday, a priority of the Obama administration and liberal Democrats:

By Paul Wilson | December 15, 2011 | 11:55 AM EST

When President Obama put off giving the go-ahead to build the Keystone Pipeline until after the 2012 election, it put the liberal media in a difficult position. Just about everyone from Big Labor to congressional Republicans to the states through which the Keystone would run agrees it would create thousands of jobs, strengthen ties with Canada and reduce dependency on oil from unstable and unfriendly nations.

Obama, who has yet to embrace a jobs scheme that actually produces jobs, bowed to the environmentalists and wealthy celebrity liberals who hate the Keystone Pipeline, which would run from Canada to the Gulf Coast. Journalists like CNN Money reporter Steve Hargreaves were left to defend the decision.

By Mark Finkelstein | December 15, 2011 | 10:18 AM EST

Philosophically, you'd think Rudy Giuliani might align more closely with Mitt Romney than with Newt Gingrich.  So what's behind Rudy's recent statement that Gingrich could be the stronger candidate?  And why did Giuliani go on Morning Joe today to trash Romney as "elitist" and "a man without a core, a man without a substance"?

Well, Rudy also reminded viewers that "I ran against him in '07, '08."  And as Rich Lowry has observed, "in 2008, the other Republican candidates hated Romney."  Just this morning, John Podhoretz  tweeted: "Re: Rudy's attacks on Romney today. Remember: SOMETHING kept Rudy out of NH in '08 when it could have been a strong state for him." So Rudy's remarks could reflect the triumph of personal animus over political ideology.  Video after the jump.

By Noel Sheppard | December 15, 2011 | 9:09 AM EST

The Paul-bots aren't going to be happy about this.

On Fox's On the Record Wednesday, conservative talk show host Rush Limbaugh said, "I think right now anybody other than Ron Paul could beat Obama if the election were tomorrow – easily" (video follows with transcript):

By Clay Waters | December 15, 2011 | 9:03 AM EST

New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman, who poses as a tough friend of Israel, offensively referred to the “Israel lobby” in his Wednesday column “Newt, Mitt, Bibi and Vladimir."

After bashing Newt Gingrich for suggesting the Palestinians are an “invented” people, Friedman reiterated the usual talking points in support of a Palestinian state, but with a hostile and paranoid twist.

By NB Staff | December 15, 2011 | 9:02 AM EST

In May of this year when Rep. Paul Ryan had released his budget plan, Newt Gingrich described the plan as "too big a jump" and "right-wing social engineering." Ryan responded, "with allies like that, who needs the Left?" Gingrich's campaign was nearly ended, and much of his staff quit shortly after. After a public backlash, Gingrich apologized to Ryan, but the episode still didn't leave the minds of many. Now seven months later, Gingrich adviser Greg Ganske says that Gingrich is in a strong position to win over Ryan supporters, but a new Mitt Romney campaign ad is hoping to prevent that from happening.

Do you think Paul Ryan could play a major role in who voters decide to support? Check out more analysis after the break, and let us know your thoughts in the comments.

By Tim Graham | December 15, 2011 | 8:22 AM EST

Former presidential candidate Mike Huckabee premiered a pro-life documentary called "The Gift of Life" in Des Moines last night, and Kaily Joy Gray at the Daily Kos sneered, "In case it was not sufficiently clear just how Jesus-y the Republican candidates for president are, today they'll have an opportunity to really pander to the extremist wing of the extremist party at Mike Huckabee's propaganda-and-popcorn extravanganza."

Gray mocked Huckabee for having a "fetus fixation" and serving up "16th century health care." She hated the idea of this film so much she admitted she couldn't even watch a trailer for this "filth," but she just knew the "forced birthers" would lie:

By Brad Wilmouth | December 15, 2011 | 6:53 AM EST

Appearing as a guest on Wednesday's Piers Morgan Tonight on CNN, former NBC News anchor Tom Brokaw recounted some of the rationale behind why the Bush administration believed that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction before the invasion of Iraq, even noting that President Clinton had also believed in the presence of WMD. (Video below)

By Tom Blumer | December 14, 2011 | 11:17 PM EST

Late Friday afternoon, Todd Shields at Bloomberg News broke a story about some guy, who happens to be an Obama and Democratic Party donor (but not disclosed), against whom the Securities and Exchange Commission is formally considering an enforcement action (also not disclosed, though it was noted at the New York Times's Dealbook Blog five hours before Shields's report), whose "wireless service caused interference to 75 percent of global-positioning system receivers examined in a U.S. government test." Though it generated a fair amount of center-right blog discussion over the weekend, the establishment press largely ignored the stunning result.

Earlier this evening, Shields and Alan Levin reported even more troubling info (as carried at the San Francisco Chronicle; bolds are mine throughout this post):