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By Brad Wilmouth | July 29, 2011 | 2:30 AM EDT

 Appearing as a guest on Thursday’s Last Word with Lawrence O’Donnell on MSNBC, the Huffington Post’s Sam Stein suggested that the budget plan that the House Republican leadership is trying to pass would harm the economy, and, as if the government did not take in lots of tax revenue already, referred to the absence of a tax increase as "no revenues." Stein:

By Brent Baker | July 28, 2011 | 9:03 PM EDT

Running a brief excerpt from his Sunday night Dateline special, “Taking the Hill: Inside Congress,” Brian Williams on Thursday evening showcased one and only one question he posed to Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell. He demanded: “Why shouldn't rich folks pay more?”

Williams insisted on NBC Nightly News that’s “a hot topic, no tax increase in any of these plans being discussed” in “what has become a big charge from the left that in any of these debt ceiling deals the poor are likely to get hit while the rich are likely to get a pass.”

By Matthew Balan | July 28, 2011 | 7:08 PM EDT

On three occasions between July 22 and July 26, 2011, CBS's Bob Schieffer carried water for President Obama when he echoed the Democrat's inaccurate claim about Social Security: "Millions of Americans...may not get their next [Social Security] check if the debt ceiling crisis is not resolved." In reality, there is enough federal revenues and authorized expenditures to pay for the program [audio clips available here].

Schieffer gave a preview of the CBS Evening News nine minutes into the 8 am Eastern hour of the July 22, 2011 Early Show with his dire warning about Social Security:

SCHIEFFER: Every month, millions of Americans depend on Social Security to support their families and make ends meet. But now, they may not get their next check, if the debt ceiling crisis is not resolved.

[Video clips below the jump]

 

By Matt Hadro | July 28, 2011 | 6:22 PM EDT

Even Socialist Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) believes the government can still pay out social security checks if the debt ceiling is not raised, but CNN highlighted disgruntled seniors Thursday who fear the opposite. CNN correspondent Sandra Endo reported live from a senior center and emphasized that the citizens were "scared," "worried," and "angry" about possibly not receiving their Social Security and Medicare payments.

"A lot of opinions, strong emotions, coming out of the seniors we've spoken to," Endo said. "There's certainly a buzz here at this senior center, and a lot of people are just frightened because they rely on their Social Security and also Medicare and Medicaid, of course, for their livelihood."

By Ken Shepherd | July 28, 2011 | 6:19 PM EDT

During the current debt ceiling debate, have the media told you what your personal share of the national debt would be after the ceiling is hiked?

Yeah. I didn't think so.

But when it was a midterm election year in which Democrats thrashed President George W. Bush and the GOP on overspending, it was a different story.

By Scott Whitlock | July 28, 2011 | 6:11 PM EDT

Chris Matthews' infatuation with John McCain has returned. The day after the Republican senator bashed his own party, knocking "Hobbit" Tea Partiers, the Hardball anchor on Thursday lauded him as "great" and even suggested McCain as a MSNBC guest host: "...He can substitute for me some night with that kind of talk!"

The former GOP presidential nominee criticized 2010 Senate candidates Christine O'Donnell and Sharron Angle. Quoting from a Wall Street Journal editorial, McCain recited possible debt ceiling scenarios: "Then Democrats would have no choice but to pass a balanced budget amendment and reform entitlements and the Tea Party Hobbits could return to Middle Earth having defeated Mordor."

[See video below. MP3 audio here.]

By Dave Pierre | July 28, 2011 | 5:37 PM EDT

This past month, Philadelphia magazine published what can only described as a vulgar, unfair, and reckless piece of yellow journalism designed to shock readers and lambaste the Catholic Church. Utilizing anonymous and discredited sources, writer Robert Huber authored a lengthy article seeking to portray the Church as a callous cabal that is oblivious to the pain of child sex abuse.

Enter Donna Farrell, Director of the Office of Communications of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.

By Tom Blumer | July 28, 2011 | 4:16 PM EDT

Two "alert" emails hit my inbox this morning concerning the Department of Labor's just-released unemployment claims report.

The one I expected came from CNNMoney.com, which read: "Initial unemployment claims fall below 400,000 for the first time in more than 3 months, dropping 24,000 to 398,000 in latest week." The other one came from USAToday.com, which does not ordinarily issue alerts when this report appears, took the opportunity to relay the same message, followed by an assertion that today's report is "a sign the job market may be healing after a recent slump."

Over at the Associated Press, Christopher Rugaber joined in the premature e-celebration (possibly more permanent link here):

By Ken Shepherd | July 28, 2011 | 3:39 PM EDT

Shortly after noon today, MSNBC's Contessa Brewer followed her colleague Chuck Todd in using the anniversary of the 14th Amendment becoming law to cite the liberal fantasy of a clause in the amendment empowering President Obama to end-run Congress on raising the debt ceiling.

Like Todd she got her history and the text of the relevant clause wrong.

This occurred during a satellite interview with Rep. Elliot Engel (D-N.Y.) on the debt ceiling debate (video follows page break; MP3 audio available here):

By Kyle Drennen | July 28, 2011 | 3:28 PM EDT

On Wednesday's NBC Nightly News, Capitol Hill correspondent Kelly O'Donnell declared the delayed vote on House Speaker John Boehner's debt ceiling plan "took precious little time," and touted how "Democrats filled the time with sharp words." A sound bite was featured from Tennessee Congressman Steve Cohen: "I've had kidney stones that are easier to pass than this."

O'Donnell focused particularly on Democrats in Congress whining about a movie clip shown in a private House GOP meeting: "House Republicans fired up their members to stick together at a meeting last night. And even played a movie clip, a violent scene from the Ben Affleck film 'The Town.'" She added: "...that got bad reviews from Democrats today."

By Aubrey Vaughan | July 28, 2011 | 3:21 PM EDT

First it was her migraines, then it was the cost of her hair and makeup, and now it's correlating her anti-gay views to bullying and suicides in a school district she represents. Rep. Michele Bachmann has in many ways become the new Sarah Palin as a prominent female target the media love to hate. Even when she responds to her critics, they don't seem to go away.

Bachmann suffers from migraines, like 30 million other Americans, but has proved through her career the migraines don't hinder her ability to serve. Nevertheless, she immediately released a statement from her doctor explaining her migraines are under control. In comparison, both former President Bill Clinton and President Barack Obama had health issues that could have turned into major problems during their presidencies, but neither released their medical records. Clinton had high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and clogged coronary arteries, while Obama was a longtime smoker with a family history of cancer.

By Alex Fitzsimmons | July 28, 2011 | 3:07 PM EDT

After only his third day on the job, Fox News senior White House correspondent Ed Henry was accused by White House Press Secretary Jay Carney of intentionally "creating" a dispute to please his new employer.

"I know you're creating a thing here for Fox," charged Carney toward the end of a testy exchange with the former CNN correspondent during Wednesday's press briefing.

As members of the White House press corps giggled off camera, Henry retorted: "That's not what I'm doing, you know better than that."

By Matt Hadro | July 28, 2011 | 12:45 PM EDT

In a critical "Keeping Them Honest" segment Wednesday night, CNN's Anderson Cooper selectively reported findings from his network's own poll to bolster his argument that Republicans are out-of-touch with the wishes of the American people in the debt ceiling debate.

This came even after the Democrat Senate Majority Leader, supported by the president, produced a plan including no tax increases in an effort to garner Republican support. Yet Cooper still peddled a CNN poll showing public support for a plan including increased tax revenues, and framed Republicans as dishonest for claiming Americans want no more taxes.

By Penny Starr | July 28, 2011 | 12:38 PM EDT

At a hearing of the House Committee on Homeland Security today about the radicalization of young Somali American Muslims by the al-Shabaab terrorist group, Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-Texas) said the committee should hold a hearing on “right-wing extremists” in the United States.

Jackson Lee used much of her allotted five minutes to question panelists with expertise on radicalization about the alleged hacking into telephones of 9-11 victims by the now-closed News of the World tabloid in England.

By Eric Scheiner | July 28, 2011 | 12:30 PM EDT

Would Senator Barack Obama disagree with the actions and statements of President Barack Obama? That question gets a closer look in the video ‘The Great Debate’.

Among the issues touched on is President Obama’s current decision to have the Attorney General’s office on the Defense Of Marriage Act (DOMA).