Latest Posts

By Ken Shepherd | September 1, 2011 | 1:41 PM EDT

"Speaker Says No, So Obama Delays Speech" is how The New York Times's September 1 front page headline spun the short squabble over the timing of President Obama's upcoming speech before Congress on his job creation plan. "Spat Over Which Day to Address Economy," added a subheadline.

The online version opted for a headline that went lighter on the loaded language: "Obama Moves Jobs Speech After Skirmish With Boehner."

For their part, Times writers Helene Cooper and Jackie Calmes ginned up the perpetual lament of partisan discord in Washington, before going on to portray President Obama as the bigger man for amending his initial wish to speak to Congress next Tuesday at 8 p.m. Eastern:

By Geoffrey Dickens | September 1, 2011 | 1:26 PM EDT

On Thursday's Today show NBC's Savannah Guthrie prodded Jon Huntsman to slam his fellow GOP presidential candidates Rick Perry and Michele Bachmann as too conservative, as she pressed the former Governor of Utah: "Are they too far right to win and beat President Obama?"

For his part, Huntsman played into Guthrie's portrayal of his competitors by responding that the American people "don't want politics at the extreme ends," as seen in the following exchange:

(video after the jump)

By Ken Shepherd | September 1, 2011 | 12:51 PM EDT

Rep. Allen West (Fla.), the only Republican member of the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC), is considering leaving the CBC after a fellow member of the caucus practically compared Tea Party members to lynch mob members.

Rep. Andre Carson (D-Ind.) recently told a gathering in Miami that Tea Party members "would love to see us as second-class citizens" and to see blacks "hanging on a tree."

New York Times staffer Jennifer Steinhauer reported the development yesterday on The Caucus blog. Today the Times ran a condensed version of that blog post on page A16 and headlined it "Taking Issue With Criticism," as though Rep. Andre Carson's comments were legitimate critiques of the Tea Party movement.

By Scott Whitlock | September 1, 2011 | 12:00 PM EDT

Former Democratic operative turned journalist George Stephanopoulos on Thursday attempted to spin the botched scheduling of a proposed Barack Obama speech to Congress as, generically, "politicians behaving badly."

Talking to his friend (and colleague from the Clinton White House) James Carville, Stephanopoulos framed the issue: "But, who could have predicted the fight over the timing of the President's speech? It seems like both sides in Washington, now, determined to get everyone hating them." However, even Democratic operatives, including Carville, have admitted the White House handled things poorly.

By Fred Lucas | September 1, 2011 | 10:58 AM EDT

The U.S. Department of Labor told CNSNews.com in a written statement on Wednesday that it will enforce the federal wage laws on behalf of anyone working in the United States “regardless of their immigration status.” The statement was in response to a written question from CNSNews.com.

The written statement backed up a video statement that Labor Secretary Hilda Solis made to CNSNews.com on Monday in which she indicated that “partnership” agreements she had signed that day with a group of Latin American countries will obligate the U.S. government to protect the working conditions for both “documented and undocumented” migrant laborers here in the United States. (See earlier story.)

By Matthew Philbin | September 1, 2011 | 10:55 AM EDT

Fact: The man who wrote so eloquently about basic human liberty in the Declaration of Independence was himself a slave owner. Unproven theory: That man had a sexual relationship with one of those slaves and fathered at least one of her children.

If you’re a liberal journalist, the fact makes you inclined to believe the theory, and ideology and political necessity take you the rest of the way. At least, that has been the case in reporting on the Jefferson-Hemings historical controversy over the last decade and more.

It will be interesting to see if a new book that goes a long way toward exonerating Thomas Jefferson receives the same kind of breathless coverage as evidence the media cited to condemn him. Or if CBS produces a miniseries to correct the one it made exploiting that evidence.

By Noel Sheppard | September 1, 2011 | 10:42 AM EDT

I sure hope Washington Post columnist E.J. Dionne as well as other unapologetic Obama-loving media members were watching MSNBC's "Morning Joe" Thursday.

After Mika Brzezinski read a snippet of Dionne's "Obama's Paradox Problem" wherein he basically blamed all that ails the nation on GOP obstruction, Joe Scarborough accurately noted, "the President owned – OWNED! – Washington, D.C., in 2009 and 2010" (video follows with transcript and commentary):

By Brad Wilmouth | September 1, 2011 | 6:55 AM EDT

On Wednesday evening, the NBC Nightly News devoted a segment to a recent study involving the World Health Organization asserting that infant mortality in the United States has fallen behind 40 other countries, including Cuba. NBC's Today show and ABC's Good Morning America also mentioned the study briefly earlier the same day.

NBC's Snyderman on Nightly News even seemed to hint that universal health care in Vermont may play a role in that state's ranking that is relatively higher than other states, even though several other states she named as relatively higher do not have universal health care.

By Tim Graham | September 1, 2011 | 6:31 AM EDT

Trial lawyer and liberal radio host Mike Papantonio really knows how to draw attention to himself. The Radio Equalizer blog reports he was subbing on Ed Schultz's radio show on Monday and not only claimed like Rep. Andre Carson that conservatives favored "lynching black people for real," but suggested Hannibal Lecter, the fictional cannibal/serial killer from "The Silence of the Lambs," was more respectable than Dick Cheney:

You know, it was easier to at least respect a character, a fictional character, like Hannibal Lecter in "Silence of the Lambs" because Hannibal Lecter at least readily admitted that he was a dangerous mutation and he was somebody capable of lying and manipulating and even killing to get what he wanted.

By Tom Blumer | September 1, 2011 | 12:51 AM EDT

In Wausau, Wisconsin, after being told by the town's mayor that it couldn't exclude GOP politicians from a Labor Day parade unless it reimbursed the city for its out-of-pocket costs (noted Tuesday night at NewsBusters; at BizzyBlog), the Marathon County Labor Council reversed its earlier decision and will allow them to participate.

Labor Council President Randy Radtke is not handling it well, something readers of the Associated Press's terse three-paragraph locally distributed story predictably won't learn. Reuters and Fox News have far more complete coverage. Here is the portion of Mr. Radtke's rant carried at Reuters:

By Tom Blumer | August 31, 2011 | 10:22 PM EDT

Using a time-honored establishment press technique, an unbylined Associated Press report out of Indianapolis this evening ("Ind. lawmaker's lynching reference riles tea party;" saved here at my web host for future reference, fair use and discussion purposes) twisted the real news about Congressman Andre Carson's inexcusable, hateful comments at a Congressional Black Caucus-sponsored event in Miami on August 22 by making the story largely about the reaction to what he said. By doing so, the AP largely diverted attention from Carson's clear primary targets: Tea Party-sympathetic congressional colleagues.

The AP report also opens by contending that what Carson said was only a "metaphor." Really.

By Clay Waters | August 31, 2011 | 7:53 PM EDT

New York Times media reporter Jeremy Peters issued a warning to young journalists on Wednesday’s front page, “Covering 2012, Youths on the Bus”: There are partisan bloggers out there who are out to embarrass mainstream journalists. Ironic, given that mainstream journalists have been doing just that to conservative politicians for decades.

A group of five fresh-faced reporters from National Journal and CBS News clicked away on their MacBooks one recent afternoon, dutifully taking notes as seasoned journalists from the campaign trail shared their rules of the road.
....

Preparing journalists to cover the presidential campaign these days is also an exercise in indiscretion management. In the new dynamic of campaigns, reporters themselves are targets both of political strategists as well as other journalists and bloggers.

By Aubrey Vaughan | August 31, 2011 | 7:06 PM EDT

The blogosphere has been abuzz this week with a video misleading viewers to believe that Rep. Michele Bachmann riles up a campaign crowd in Iowa with the line, "Who likes white people?"

The video was pirated from Robert Stacy McCain's blog, the Other McCain, after he covered a Bachmann appearance at a rainy August 5th Christian music festival, during which Bachmann shouted to the drenched crowd "Who likes wet people?" She followed the question with a statement to her Christian audience on God's power over the weather, which was cut from the edited version. The blogger took the video from McCain, added a caption to read "Who likes white people?" and the video instantly became viral thanks to Perez Hilton, CBS News, and Wonkette. Now the blogger who edited the stolen video has removed the video from YouTube and apologized to McCain, but has still damaged the reputation of Bachmann and could face legal repercussions from both her and McCain.

By Noel Sheppard | August 31, 2011 | 6:08 PM EDT

As NewsBusters reported moments ago, a solar company the Obama administration loaned 535 million taxpayer dollars to as part of the 2009 stimulus plan filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy Wednesday.

Although it's still too early to gauge how the rest of the president's fans in the media will cover this if at all, NBCBayArea.com reported the local event in a rather shocking fashion under the headline "Solyndra Filing a Disaster for Obama":

By Matthew Balan | August 31, 2011 | 5:09 PM EDT

On Tuesday, The Washington Post's Felicia Sonmez noted how MSNBC's Tamron Hall moderated the recent Congressional Black Caucus town hall where Rep. Andre Carson smeared the Tea Party by accusing them of wanting to bring back Jim Crow laws and endorsing the lynching of blacks. Former Obama aide turned NBC employee Joy-Ann Reid also attended the CBC event, but omitted Rep. Carson's attack from her report.

During the August 22 town hall in Miami, Carson, a leader within the liberal Congressional Black Caucus from Indiana, actually apologized to Hall in the midst of his inflammatory remarks against the Tea Party: