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By Mark Finkelstein | September 26, 2011 | 3:53 PM EDT

If Chris Christie doesn't get into the presidential race, the would-be comics of the MSM might be even more disappointed than the Republican honchos reportedly urging the Jersey gov to run.  Yesterday, I noted how ABC's "Good Morning America" managed to work a number of fat cracks into its report on Christie.  Today it was the oleaginous Martin Bashir's turn.

Bashir never acknowledged his jokes with a wink and a nod.  But from describing Christie as "massively" popular with Republicans, to observing that when it comes to a possible run Christie hasn't "pushed away from the table,"  to suggesting that it wouldn't be that easy for Christie to "roll over" President Obama, there was no doubting the kind of bashing Bashir was up to.  Video after the jump.

By Kyle Drennen | September 26, 2011 | 3:49 PM EDT

Update [17:01 ET]: Full transcript added.

Appearing on Saturday's NBC "Today," MSNBC "Hardball" host Chris Matthews proclaimed that efforts by House Republicans to pay for FEMA disaster relief by making budget cuts elsewhere was akin to "what parliaments do right before military coups in other countries." He then declared it was a "Complete disaster, complete failure to do their job." [Audio available here]

The segment began with co-host Amy Robach asking Matthews about the Obama administration discarding key provisions of No Child Left Behind without congressional approval. Matthews staunchly defended the action, ranting: "You have two points of view in the United States Congress. One is revolution, 'It's time to cut everything no matter what the fight, cut the spending, say no to the President.' On the other side, business as usual, 'Let's make the government work.' And in this case, the President gave up on Congress and said, 'I'm going to do it myself.'"

View video after the jump

By Clay Waters | September 26, 2011 | 3:46 PM EDT

New York Times Jerusalem Bureau Chief Ethan Bronner took some friendly fire from the paper’s Public Editor Arthur Brisbane in his Sunday column, “Tangled Relationships in Jerusalem.” Brisbane forwarded complaints from a left-wing anti-Israeli blogger about Bronner's business relationship with a conservative Israeli, Charley Levine. But Bronner's history of slanted reporting, especially his hostile coverage of "angry rampag[ing]" Jewish settlers in the West Bank, proves he can hardly be credibly accused of sympathizing with Israeli conservatives.

Conflict of interest, or the appearance of it, is poisonous in journalism. This is particularly so when it relates to reporting on Israel and the Palestinians, a subject that draws a steady stream of skepticism about New York Times coverage from readers and partisans on all sides.

By Rich Noyes | September 26, 2011 | 3:23 PM EDT

American Spectator senior editor Quin Hillyer appeared on the Fox News Channel’s America’s News Headquarters program on Sunday to highlight the media’s continued silence about the Obama administration’s use of liberal ideology as a criterion in hiring lawyers for career Justice Department positions, even though the media leaped on similar accusations during the Bush years.

While Bush’s DOJ was subjected to media condemnation and an official investigation over it’s hiring practices, Hillyer recounted, “cut forward to the Obama administration and they are doing not just the same thing, but to the Nth degree. They are doing it far worse than the Bush administration ever did, without any, any attention until now, certainly from the big newspapers.”

Details and video below the jump

By NB Staff | September 26, 2011 | 2:58 PM EDT

Update: Click here to make your voice heard!

NewsBusters publisher and Media Research Center (MRC) President Brent Bozell has issued a letter  to the heads of NBC, CBS, and ABC television networks calling on them to end their bias against GOP presidential hopefuls in their reporting and interviewing.

The MRC recently released an analysis of 53 weekday morning show interviews with either potential or declared Republican candidates from January 1 through September 15, and compared the results with our study of the same programs’ treatment of the Democratic candidates during the same time period from four years ago. The analysis revealed, among other things, that by a 5-to-1 margin, ABC, CBS and NBC morning show hosts employed an adversarial liberal agenda when questioning this year’s Republican candidates.

This latest proof of blatant bias has prompted a letter from Bozell to each of the network heads which reads in part:

By Tim Graham | September 26, 2011 | 2:45 PM EDT

While ABC's Good Morning America promoted that "cool lady" Michelle Obama's role in the season debut of ABC's Extreme Makeover: Home Edition last Thursday, they failed to notice when Laura Bush pitched in on the same ABC show in 2005 (after George W. Bush's last campaign). It was taped in September, and aired on December 11. Even the show's producers downplayed the cameo as atypical and not worth any hype. (Liberal newspaper types attacked Mrs. Bush for the cameo.) 

On the day of the airing, Richard Huff of the New York Daily News mentioned in the 12th paragraph of an article on the Extreme Makeover show that it would feature James Denton of Desperate Housewives, and oh yes, that wife of the Republican president:

By Ken Shepherd | September 26, 2011 | 1:06 PM EDT

The end of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" (DADT) is almost a week-old story, but the Washington Post is still busy churning up gushy human interest stories about gay and lesbian soldiers who are coming out of the closet.

"After end of ban, acknowledgment at last," reads the headline on page B3 of the September 26 edition of the paper. "Gay service members' partners celebrate repeal of 'don't ask, don't tell," noted the subheadline.

By Kyle Drennen | September 26, 2011 | 12:33 PM EDT

Variety magazine just released its 2011 "Women's Impact Report" – examining the influence of women in media – which included NBC "Today" co-host Ann Curry, who was described as "'Today's' voice of intelligence, compassion."

This is the same Ann Curry that could not find Illinois on a map. The same Ann Curry that wished all weapons could be inflatable toys. The same Ann Curry that proclaimed that a blender powered by a bicycle could actually "save the environment!"     

Read the Media Research Center's full Profile in Bias of Curry.

By Scott Whitlock | September 26, 2011 | 12:15 PM EDT

Good Morning America's John Hendren on Sunday dismissed the victory of Herman Cain in the Florida straw poll, condescendingly asserting that the "big winner is nobody." The ABC reporter made sure to repeatedly mention the business of the Republican presidential candidate: "That's right. The man who brought you Godfather's Pizza at 37 percent."

Hendren arrogantly explained, "What's notable about the Florida straw poll is less who won than who lost...The week's big winner in the Republican primary is nobody." It's odd for ABC to dismiss the straw poll's actual winner as a "nobody." But if the candidate hasn't broken through, perhaps the hosts at GMA should actually consider having him on as a guest. (This has yet to happen in 2011.)

[See video below. MP3 audio here.]


By Noel Sheppard | September 26, 2011 | 11:55 AM EDT

The folks at MSNBC as well as parent NBC should sit up and take notice of something Joe Scarborough said on Monday's "Morning Joe."

"There are not enough people that are either Republican in the mainstream media or talk to people on the telephone at least one a month...who actually understand what the Republican Party is" (video follows with transcript and commentary):

By Tim Graham | September 26, 2011 | 11:22 AM EDT

George Clooney has begun a publicity tour for his new political thriller The Ides of March (which debuts in theaters October 7). John Horn of the Los Angeles Times says the Clooney character has a platform “so uncompromisingly left-leaning it might make Fox News commentators burst into flames.”

Not only that, Clooney’s character proposes the U.S. government ban the internal combustion engine. Clooney says "make it happen." He actually believes that “these are the kind of leadership things I would love to see.”  Horn explained:

By NB Staff | September 26, 2011 | 11:15 AM EDT

During the 2008 election cycle, small donors were the symbol of President Obama's campaign. This time around, though, Obama's low approval ratings have underscored a major problem with his 2012 campaign: the growing disillusionment from his former grassroots supporters. With their disillusionment and poor economy also comes a significant drop in the number of small donations Obama is receiving.

Do you think the drop in small donations signals problems for his campaign? Or are big donors really all that matter? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.

By Kyle Drennen | September 26, 2011 | 10:23 AM EDT

Update [11:15 ET]: Full transcript added.

In an interview with Herman Cain on Monday's NBC "Today," co-host Ann Curry declared: "The Washington Post is reporting that many of the delegates voted for you – are saying that they voted for you as a protest vote to express no confidence in the Republican field. Do you want to weigh in on this?" [Audio available here]

Cain fired back at the report: "I think that is absolutely false. I talked to a lot of delegates when I was in Florida all last week. It's not a protest vote. Look, the message coming out of that victory was quite simple. First of all, the voice of the people is more powerful than the voice of the media....the people are listening to the message and not simply, with all due respect, just to the media."

View video after the jump

By NB Staff | September 26, 2011 | 9:35 AM EDT

"Greece has got a 45 percent income tax, a 23 percent value-added tax on top of that, so Greece should be in fine shape according to this economic theory," NewsBusters publisher Brent Bozell told Fox News's Sean Hannity on Friday, reacting to a clip of CNN's Christine Romans insisting that "serious economists" all agree that taxes must be raised on America's highest income earners.

"This is a press release by the Obama campaign," Bozell complained, adding that "cutting the size of government... capping spending" and "cutting the deficit" are options that are "off the table, not just with Obama, but with CNN."

[See video after page break]

By Clay Waters | September 26, 2011 | 9:26 AM EDT

Classless Krugman on "Fake Heroes" of 9-11 like Bush

“What happened after 9/11 -- and I think even people on the right know this, whether they admit it or not -- was deeply shameful. The atrocity should have been a unifying event, but instead it became a wedge issue. Fake heroes like Bernie Kerik, Rudy Giuliani, and, yes, George W. Bush raced to cash in on the horror. And then the attack was used to justify an unrelated war the neocons wanted to fight, for all the wrong reasons.” – Columnist Paul Krugman in a blog post at the morning of September 11.


News Flash: Paying Taxes Now Voluntary, According to New York Times

“Obama Tax Plan Would Ask More Of Millionaires – Called ‘Buffett Rule’ – Populist Sales Pitch to Press the G.O.P. in Budget Talks.” –  Headline to lead story of September 18.
“President’s Plan On Deficit Mixes Cuts And Taxes – Foes See Class Warfare – Trimming Entitlements and Asking the Rich to Pay More.” – Headline to lead story of September 19.