Norah O'Donnell hounded Republican strategist Mike Murphy on Wednesday's CBS This Morning, repeatedly hinting that Mitt Romney flip-flopped on the issue of abortion during his Tuesday interview with The Des Moines Register. O'Donnell conspicuously failed to mention that during the same interview, Romney promised to "reinstate the Mexico City policy....that foreign aid dollars...would not be used to carry out abortion in other countries." [Update, 3:55 pm Eastern: audio clips available here; video below the jump]
By contrast, the anchor's former employer, NBC, pointed out on Wednesday's Today show that "Romney did say he would instead use an executive order to reinstate a ban on using American foreign aid to fund abortions."
In her October 9 column “Ryan v. Biden: the Catholic ‘Thrilla in Manila,’” Washington Post “She the People” columnist Melinda Henneberger made a common journalistic error when discussing the Catholic Church, introducing a false dichotomy between “liberal” Catholicism’s emphasis on social issues and “conservative” Catholicism’s emphasis on pro-life issues. Predictably, she came down hard on “conservative” Catholics and “Fox News bishops” for “unwittingly whittling away at their own influence with the increasingly secular Democratic party.” (And, needless to say, that’s the only influence that matters at The Washington Post.)
But the Catholic Church has not altered her moral teaching. It’s Democratic politicians that have changed and increasingly embraced policies directly opposed to Church teaching, such as same-sex marriage and abortion. Henneberger herself noted the Democrats' enthusiastic embrace of abortion at their convention just over a month ago.
Last week I noted how the NBCNews.com website considered speeches by Gov. Susana Martinez (R-N.M.), Obama co-chair-turned-Republican Artur Davis, and Staples founder Tom Stemberg to not be "notable" enough for inclusion in their "curated" follow-up posts the day after their respective speeches. Well, today, NBC Politics has a post with "highlights from Tuesday night's Democratic National Convention speeches."
Yet while the Democratic Convention has purposefully sought to play up their pro-abortion rights, pro-taxpayer-subsidized contraception stands, the remarks last night by NARAL Pro-Choice America president -- and Democratic Party Platform Committee member -- Nancy Keenan were omitted from the collection. One of the more striking lines invoked the Divine:
You'd think an image of a man violently covering a frightened woman's mouth, accompanied with the words, "He’s decided to become a father…right-wing Republicans want to make sure he does", would be considered mildly extreme, right?
Not extreme enough for Huffington Post contributor and pro-Obama blogger, Erin Kotecki Vest, who posted the image to her Facebook page.
John Dickerson hinted on Wednesday's CBS This Morning that the only radicals in the abortion debate were on the pro-life side. During a discussion about the furor over Rep. Todd Akin's recent "legitimate rape" remark, Dickerson stated that "Congressman Akin...put a highlight on the extreme end of the abortion debate."
The political director's liberal slant came in the midst of his network's 37 minutes of coverage of the Akin controversy since Monday. By contrast, CBS devoted just under 10 minutes of coverage to Vice President Joe Biden's "put y'all back in chains" smear of Republicans over a similar three-day period earlier in August, a nearly four-to-one disparity.
"GOP rejects rape exception in platform," blared a Politico headline yesterday. "Even as Mitt Romney sought to quash the furor surrounding Todd Akin’s 'legitimate' rape comments, the Republican platform committee here approved an abortion plank that includes no exemptions for rape, incest or even to save the life of the mother," James Hohmann noted in the lead paragraph of his August 21 story.
"On Tuesday, not one of the 100-plus members on the GOP platform committee introduced amendments. They kept the identical language from 2004 and 2008," Hohmann groused, comporting to the media's quadrennial fixation on how the GOP is supposedly too extremely pro-life. By contrast, as I noted yesterday, the 15-person Democratic platform committee -- one member of which is NARAL Pro-Choice America's president -- earlier this month stubbornly refused to mildly soften their party's stringent pro-choice abortion plank. Politico, of course, failed to cover that controversy.
Political reporter Stephanie Condon painted Republican vice presidential pick Paul Ryan as an "anti-abortion" extremist in a Wednesday report for CBSNews.com. Condon forwarded the talking points of the pro-abortion left as she zeroed in on Ryan's support of personhood legislation: "Supporters of reproductive rights have loudly pointed out that this type of legislation would not only outlaw abortion but potentially some forms of contraception or even in vitro fertilization."
The online correspondent hyped that "personhood initiatives are so extreme that even card-carrying conservatives like former Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour have expressed concerns that they go too far." Condon repeatedly used variations of the "conservative" label in her article, but didn't once identify the left-wing politics of pro-abortion groups.
Oozing condescension, Baker confessed herself a “little taken aback because this is the first fanatical statement I've heard from Rose since I hopped into her Hyundai an hour before,” and “I was prepared for extremism.”
On Thursday's NBC Nightly News, anchor Brian Williams eagerly touted ongoing trouble for the nation's largest breast cancer charity: "...the controversy involving the Susan G. Komen Foundation has soiled one of the great names and best-known brand names in all of charity....it was the symbol of the fight against breast cancer until controversy came along and Komen cut funds for Planned Parenthood, a decision it later reversed."
Williams noted how "senior leadership has given way" as "founder, Nancy Brinker, whose late sister was Susan G. Komen, is stepping down from her role as CEO." He wondered: "But will it be enough to restore faith and quiet the critics?" Correspondent Lisa Myers declared the move "was welcomed as much-needed change at Komen affiliates."
At no point in the segment was Planned Parenthood, the nation's largest abortion provider, described as controversial.
The Associated Press made no attempt to hide their liberal slant on Tuesday as they hyped an obscure leftist organization's report attacking American conservatives' efforts to support traditional marriage in Africa. Writer Michelle Faul repeatedly used biased labels such as "anti-gay," "religious right," and "Christian right" against social conservatives. By contrast, she made only one vague reference to the far left political ideology of the group that issued the report.
Faul also falsely implied that American social conservatives endorse legislative efforts in Uganda to implement the death penalty on those convicted of "aggravated homosexuality."
The three broadcast networks continue to act as guardian angels to Planned Parenthood, shielding the abortion provider from any hint of controversy. Live Action videos showing Planned Parenthood’s apparent willingness to cooperate in sex selection abortion have been completely buried by ABC, CBS, and NBC for an entire week (morning shows of May 30-June 5, evening shows of May 29-June 4).
Live Action has come out with twovideos showing Planned Parenthood staffers actively assisting a Live Action actor to procure a sex-selection abortion. In the week after the story broke, the networks gave zero coverage to the Live Action reports. (Cable outlets CNN and Fox News have both given the Live Action videos coverage.) The videos coincided with a House vote to ban sex-selection abortion, which the networks also completely ignored.
O’Reilly noted: “The Media Research Center looked at the news this week on the nightly newscasts and CNN. Zero reporting. Nothing. Silence. Blackout.” (O’Reilly was mistaken in that CMI’s analysis didn’t cover CNN – just ABC, CBS and NBC.)
Those “war on women” promoters at the networks aren’t very good at follow-through. Not only are the Big Three networks skipping out on the latest sting video of Planned Parenthood on sex-selection abortions, they also ignored the House bill called the Prenatal Discrimination Act, which would ban sex-selection abortions. The House vote on Thursday was 246-168, but since it was passed under rules requiring a two-thirds majority, it failed.
But the point was to put Democrats on the record in favor of the war on baby girls, and for sentences like these: “The White House said President Obama opposed the measure because it intrudes on a woman’s right to privacy and would be hazardous for doctors who perform abortions.” It's apparently not hazardous to the unborn?
CBS made little effort to hide that it was siding with liberal dissenters inside the Catholic Church on Wednesday's CBS Evening News and Thursday's CBS This Morning. Scott Pelley hyped that there was a Vatican "crackdown on America's 57,000 nuns." Gayle King touted how "some Catholics compare it to the dark days of the Inquisition, a crackdown on a prominent organization of nuns accused of being radical feminists."
King and co-anchor Charlie Rose sympathized with the group of dissenting sisters during an interview of left-wing public radio host Sister Maureen Fiedler, and hinted that the Catholic hierarchy was "out of touch." Correspondent Wyatt Andrews also overwhelmingly slanted towards the disobedient religious and their supporters during his reports on the two programs, and played only one brief soundbite from a spokeswoman for the bishops.
When cancer charity Susan G. Komen for the Cure prepared to withdraw less than a million dollars of funding per year from Planned Parenthood, the three broadcast networks went ballistic, devoting a host of stories to the “explosion of anger” against Komen. But when videos allegedly showing Planned Parenthood’s complicity in sex-selection abortions were released by a pro-life group, the major networks completely and predictably buried the story.
Pro-life group Live Action released a video on May 29 showing a Planned Parenthood staffer helping a Live Action actor obtain a sex-selection abortion. On the morning of May 31, they released a second video with similar content. But the networks buried the story: not a single second of coverage was devoted to the Live Action videos by ABC, CBS, and NBC, on both the evening shows of May 29 and 30, and the morning shows of May 30 and 31.
There is nothing more predictable than networks burying negative news about Planned Parenthood.
Pro-life organization Live Action recently came out with a disturbing video showing a Planned Parenthood staffer in Texas assisting a Live Action actor to obtain a sex-selection abortion. That practice is where a fetus is aborted if the child is discovered to be of a certain gender (usually female). The broadcast outlets have completely ignored the controversy: ABC, CBS, and NBC have not devoted a single second of their May 29 evening broadcasts and May 30 morning broadcasts to coverage of the recent Live Action videos.
The Big Three networks' evening newscasts have all but punted so far on the 12 lawsuits filed on Monday against the Obama administration, challenging the abortifacient/birth control mandate which is part of ObamaCare. However, CBS actually followed up on their exclusive interview of New York Archbishop Timothy Dolan on the regulation on Tuesday's CBS This Morning.
Correspondent Norah O'Donnell confronted Press Secretary Jay Carney during the Tuesday White House press briefing over Dolan's sharp critique of the mandate on the morning newscast: "He [Dolan] said that it's a 'strait-jacketing' and 'handcuffing exemption.'...Is that what the President is doing...strait-jacketing and hand-cuffing religious institutions?" O'Donnell's question didn't make it on the air on Tuesday's CBS Evening News or Wednesday's CBS This Morning, even after Carney evaded directly answering her question.
ESPN's Grantland website jumped on the bash Manny Pacquiao bandwagon on Thursday by giving a platform to a homosexual activist, who predictably trashed the Catholic Church as she took the Filipino boxing sensation to task for defending traditional marriage.
Writer Laurel Fantauzzo ripped the "the Church's cruel, untrue dictates about me," and promised if he didn't "evolve" like President Obama, "I'll simply have to sigh wearily and turn away from you, the way I've turned away from all of the idiotic bigots I've come across in my life, carrying a cross or a heavy book or a Constitution."
According to Chris Matthews, the radically pro-abortion Kathleen Sebelius has "done more to reduce the number of unwanted pregnancies than anyone in this country." Matthews assailed pro-life demonstrators who approve of "dictatorial laws" to reduce abortion. According to him, these protesters need to give the woman, who has made birth control "free," a "little credit."
The Hardball anchor on Thursday insisted that Sebelius, who as Kansas governor vetoed a partial birth abortion bill and entertained radical doctor George Tiller at the official residence, is a hero. Matthews praised, "It could be argued that this one person has done more to reduce the number of unwanted pregnancies than anyone in our country." [See video below. MP3 audio here.]
Despite devoting 33 stories to the dramatic case of Chinese dissident Chen Guangcheng, NBC and ABC have all but ignored the major cause of the human rights activist: Opposing the communist country's policy of forced abortion and sterilization. From April 28 to May 7, the two networks only mentioned this detail five times– and then only in passing.
Although Chen's high profile plight might seem like a logical time to take an expansive look into China's one-child policy, the two networks passed. CBS, however, touted Chen's pro-life activities the most, referencing them in seven of 16 stories. (The three networks totaled 44 stories over ten days.) On April 28, World News reporter David Kerley mentioned, as an aside, that Chen,"who has protested and exposed forced abortions and sterilizations, was able to scale a wall and escape" his house arrest.
TV star Cybill Shepherd went on a radical feminist bender on Friday's CBS This Morning, touting that there really is a "war on women" manifested by the "attack on Planned Parenthood." Anchor Gayle King had to cut her off, as Shepherd inserted her diatribe at the end of the segment, but revealed her sympathies with her guest: "I think you're raising a good point. We just need more time to do it."
The far left actress made her devotion to the pro-abortion cause clear, and hinted that pro-lifers were so extreme that they would try to kill her: "Abortion is our constitutional right. We should keep it legal. And also, birth control should be available to everyone....I'm coming to lead the next march on Washington, and I'm not going to wear a bulletproof vest. My mother's scared for me." [audio available here; video below the jump]
Lena Dunham’s new show, “Girls” debuted April 15 on HBO, and predictably it’s the new media darling for its awkward “honesty” and incredibly feminist plot. “Girls” is all about the woes and misery of idle youth and post-collegiate despair, and if Dunham really is “the voice of a generation,” as she claimed in the pilot (while high on drugs) then our future looks bleak.
In 30 minutes “Girls” managed to casually reference abortions, show graphic nudity and sex scenes and depict characters getting high on opium. Upcoming episodes will include sexually transmitted diseases and a masturbation scene (starring Allison Williams, daughter of NBC News’ Brian Williams – Dad must be so proud!).
On Saturday, left-wing radical turned MSNBC host (is that redundant?) Melissa Harris-Perry was missing only the pom-poms, as she trumpeted the plight of a Canadian beauty contestant she described as "born a male...self-identified as female...and had gender reassignment surgery at the age of 19." Harris-Perry gushed, "You go, girl!..we are all going to be watching and rooting for you."
The leftist columnist exclaimed how "May is going to be an exciting month for my feminist friends and me. For the first time, we're going to be able to watch a beauty pageant with pride." After noting how Miss Universe officials backtracked on their original decision to disqualify the now-Jenna Talackova, Harris-Perry added, "Others might want to take note of this turnaround, like the city of Anchorage, Alaska, that just rejected a ballot initiative to add sexual orientation and trans-gendered identity to a list of protected classes." [audio clips available here; video below the jump].
When the press wants to smear a conservative outfit, it embarks on a mission to find and highlight someone, no matter how peripheral their involvement or unreflective of that group's beliefs, to portray as somehow typical of their mindset. But when someone who is clearly a long-time activist in the "pro-choice" movement clearly betrays the truth -- that the movement really is pro-abortion without limits -- they're nowhere to be found.
I expect that to be the case with Jessica DelBalzo's latest item ("I Love Abortion") filed at RH Reality Check, and not merely because the press is so predictable. It's because the press ignored an arguably more outrageous commentary Ms. DelBalzo filed at the same site in August, where she proudly told readers that she had discussed abortion and with her two year-old child, and that all "pro-choice" mothers of toddlers who successfully escaped the womb should do the same thing -- before the "forced-birth bullies" have a chance to exert their awful influence.
Almost a month after touting on-air their poll finding that 61% of Catholics supposedly backed President Obama's controversial birth control mandate, CBS failed to mention their most recent poll that found that 57% are now against the regulation. The network devoted an article to the new poll statistic on their website, but failed to cover it on their morning and evening newscasts Monday into Tuesday.
Instead, CBS Evening News and CBS This Morning did some damage control on behalf of the President, downplaying his "all-time low" approval number and claiming that "there's little that he [Obama] can do...in the short term to affect gas prices, and gas prices hurts his political chances," as anchor Charlie Rose put it. Their poll partners at the New York Times also buried the finding in their front-page article on the poll, and spun it by suggesting that women were "split" on the controversy.
The New York Times defended the Texas branches of Planned Parenthood, the nation's largest abortion provider, on the front page Thursday: "Women in Texas Losing Options For Health Care" was reported by Pam Belluck and Emily Ramshaw, a reporter for the Texas Tribune, which produces a twice-weekly local section for the Texas edition of the Times.
Ramshaw was last covered in Times Watch in January, lamenting the "bureaucratic nightmare" instigated by a pro-life law. (When was the last time the Times complained about overregulation?)
On Monday's CBS This Morning, Charlie Rose hinted that Republicans needed to go further in decrying Rush Limbaugh's slam of radical feminist and law student Sandra Fluke. Rose asked Senator John McCain, "Are you satisfied that those Republican officials have gone far enough in condemning these statements?" McCain replied, "Oh, I'll leave that up to pundits like you, Charlie" [audio available here; video below the jump].
The morning newscast also highlighted how "seven companies have pulled commercials from Limbaugh's nationally syndicated show. Online data company Carbonite said the on-air attack crossed the line....Limbaugh had some defenders, but they were drowned out by those protests on the left, and critics on the right."
Jon Meacham has come down with a particularly virulent strain of Limbaugh Derangement Syndrome that is bringing him to the brink of insanity. How else could one explain the Time magazine writer hailing an anti-Limbaugh speech as "timeless" just like Jesus's Sermon on the Mount or Lincoln's Gettysburg Address?
On Thursday's All Things Considered, Julie Rovner, NPR's resident ObamaCare flack, claimed that the U.S. Senate rejecting an amendment protecting religious liberty was "closer than the 63 percent majority that supports the contraceptive coverage requirement" from the federal government, according to the poll from the liberal Kaiser Family Foundation. The organization is an oft-used source for Rovner.
The group obtained the 63 percent figure by asking a question that omits the religious liberty component to the firestorm: "In general, do you support or oppose the new federal requirement that private health insurance plans cover the cost of birth control?" A Pew Research Poll from mid-February included that issue, and found that 48 percent supported an exemption for religious groups, versus 44 percent in support of the mandate.
One thing you can say about an odious paper published at the misnamed Journal of Medical Ethics on February 23 (abstract; full text) is that at least its authors, Australians Alberto Giubilini and Francesca Minerva, didn't fall back on abortion-supporting American politicians' obfuscating "choice" language in discussing what they advocate.
Here's what the pair support: "... we need to assess facts in order to decide whether the same arguments that apply to killing a human fetus can also be consistently applied to killing a newborn human." Their answer is "Yes, they should," which means, based on state of current immoral law, that they advocate infanticide on demand. As offensive as their arguments supporting such a practice are, I also wish to note the arrogant "how dare you?" element of the reaction at the JME to the firestorm of outraged comments it has itself received and the criticisms posted elsewhere. But first, I have excerpted as much from the paper as I can stand without throwing up in disgust (Warning: Concepts presented will offend; bolds are mine; italics are in original):