Appearing as a guest on Tuesday's New Day on CNN, Politico senior political writer Maggie Haberman laid down the groundwork for the media to show a double standard in not taking issue with Hillary Clinton's wealth as opposed to Republican Mitt Romney who was repeatedly hounded in 2012 as the dominant media grasped at straws to identify "gaffes" to paint him as "out of touch." The Politico writer also bolstered Clinton's attempt to preempt campaign questions about Benghazi by seeming to predict the strategy would have some effectiveness.
Haberman argued that Clinton's claim that she and husband former President Clinton were "broke" after they left the White House as they were purchasing multiple "houses" would not be a "consequential" gaffe because it does not fit "an existing narrative" of the former First Lady, unlike in the case of Romney. Haberman began:
At the Weekly Standard this morning, Daniel Halper noted a CNN panel discussion wherein the network's John King and guest Maggie Haberman of the Politico discussed how furious many Democrats are with President Barack Obama's leadership, especially in connection with the Veterans administration scandal. The broadcast also reveals that the Beltway press corps has been aware of Democrats' misgivings about Obama's leadership for some time. We sure haven't heard much about it, have we?
This is noteworthy because the press eagerly broadcasts evidence of disagreements among Republicans and conservatives, and rarely does so when there is disunity on the left. The odds that we'll see much more of what aired this morning on CNN are therefore quite low. Video and a transcript follow the jump:
In their magazine, Politico’s Glenn Thrush and Maggie Haberman offered this latte-spit-take Joke of the Day headline: “What Is Hillary Clinton afraid of? If she doesn’t run, the single biggest factor holding her back will be the media.”
The story’s final quote is from a royal insider to Queen Hillary: “She wants to be president; she doesn’t want to run for president...The worst part of running for president for her, clearly, is dealing with the press.” Thrush and Haberman began with a poor-poor-Hillary flourish:
Politico’s Alex Burns and Maggie Haberman have designated 2013 as “Year of the Liberal Billionaire,” as progressive titans like Michael Bloomberg and Tom Steyer unload their money bags on TV ads in off-year elections.
“Their arrival on the political scene, at the same time as many conservative donors remain disheartened from the GOP’s 2012 defeat, represents a shift in power in the arena of big-money campaigns,” Burns and Haberman assert. At least they allowed some more conservative sources to call out the media for giving liberal billionaires a free pass:
New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg was predictably unhappy with Saturday's verdict in the George Zimmerman case. He used it as an opportunity to go after what he calls "shoot first" laws, which people in the real world refer to as "stand your ground" laws.
It was an irrelevant rant, as Politico's Maggie Haberman pointed out: "In the Zimmerman case, neither the defense nor the prosecution ultimately used “Stand Your Ground.” Zimmerman’s attorneys ... presented a conventional self-defense strategy." Problem is, Haberman waited until her final paragraph to note that, and gave readers every impression that the case was about "stand your ground" up until that point (presented in full for fair use and discussion purposes; bolds are mine):
A panel of reporters from the Washington tabloid ganged up on Michele Bachmann on Thursday’s Morning Joe, blasting the Minnesota congresswoman as a “celebrity politician” who will become “irrelevant to politics the moment she steps out of public office.”
As of about 4:30 p.m., a search at the Politico on "Hillary Clinton" (in quotes) returned about 20 results -- for April alone. While a few of the results are teases for longer items, that's out-of-control coverage of someone who officially left government weeks ago.
The reasons for the obsession, of course, are to try to convince Mrs. Clinton to run for president in 2016 and to clear the field of other Democrats who might think that a strong presidential resume does not consist of 25 years of playing the good wife for a political and behavioral scoundrel, eight years as senator from a state in which she never live until the year she first ran for election, and four years as Secretary of State which ended in "What difference does it make?" after four Americans died in Benghazi on her watch. The lastest Politico offering from Maggie Haberman indicates that we can expect the website's obsession to continue indefinitely, because they think, or want us to think, that "average Americans" are just as obsessed:
Actress and Tennessee resident Ashley Judd announced today that she is not running for Senate in Kentucky.
Politico has two items on this political development. The main story by Maggie Halberman and Manu Raju defensively describes her as "an eighth-generation Kentuckian." The second is a very short post from Caitlin McDevitt linking to the longer original which merely excerpts five paragraphs from the longer item. It's at that post where a commenter made the following observation:
As Sarah Palin told a crowd of cheering conservatives this weekend, CPAC is the time of year when journalists present their annual “conservatives in crisis” stories. That was certainly the case on Saturday’s CBS This Morning, which featured Politico’s Maggie Haberman as the sole CPAC analyst.
Asked by anchor Anthony Mason if the tone at CPAC was different this year following the Republican loss in the 2012 presidential election, Haberman replied, “The tone is sort of defeatist, frankly.” [Video below. MP3 audio here.]
Yesterday in the midst of defending his record in a tough interview with Univision, President Barack Obama said that he learned in his term in the Oval Office that "you can't change Washington from the inside" but only from the outside and that "that's how [he] got elected," by appealing to a frustrated electorate to vote for change. At a campaign event later in the day, Mitt Romney seized on the gaffe to jab at the president, saying the voters will be glad to send him home in November. whereby the president all but admitted that Washington can be changed by voting out the sitting president.
But have no fear, Team Obama, MSNBC's Alex Wagner and Politico's Maggie Haberman are here to spin heavily in your favor.
On Monday night, Politico posted two stories with the same theme: Tropical Storm Isaac seriously threatens to ruin the Republican convention and remind voters of Republican incompetence during hurricanes. Does anyone think this outfit is fair and balanced?
In the story “GOP fears ghost of Hurricane Katrina at RNC 2012,” Politico's Alexander Burns and Maggie Haberman just keep skipping over the Democratic mayor of New Orleans and the Democratic governor of Louisiana as they predict the most damaging political scenario they can hope for, er, imagine as the storm spared the GOP convention site in Tampa:
Certain events in the 2012 campaign make you ask how would the media respond if a particular story was about Mitt Romney rather than President Obama. Take this past Friday, when President Obama was introduced at an Ohio rally by a man accused to stealing trade secrets from his former employer.
According to a local CBS affiliate in Cleveland, Ohio, Daniel Potkanowicz has been ordered to pay $500,000 to his former employer after a judge ruled that Potkanowicz had stolen trade secrets.
Our friend John Nolte at Big Journalism points out that Politico is back to its old tricks, defending Barack Obama from criticism by digging up dirt on a private citizen who supports his Republican opponent. In 2008, it was Joe the Plumber who was vetted by the Politico. This time around, it's an Iowa man who appears in a Romney Web ad.
"Right now Politico is doing oppo-research on private citizens to aid Obama. Seems to me that makes journalist's private lives fair game, no?" Nolte asked this morning in a tweet, noting in another tweet that "Politico's Maggie Haberman is a public figure in a position of power. Why is her private life any less newsworthy than a private citizen?"
It's becoming clearer and clearer that the time has come for MSNBC's Chris Matthews to retire.
On Tuesday's Hardball, despite virtually every intelligent person in this country knowing that Ford was the lone American car company to not accept a bailout in 2009, Matthews actually claimed President Obama "bet on" the auto giant (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Well, that didn't take long. It took about half an hour into her new noon Eastern program Now with Alex Wagner for the host to attack the Republican presidential field as insane. And true to MSNBC form, her panel of liberal journalists largely agreed with her.
"When I watched that waterboarding segment, all I could think of is these Republican candidates are putting another brick on the house of crazy that they are building for themselves," Wagner complained after airing a montage of GOP presidential contenders in Saturday's CBS-National Journal foreign policy debate regarding their views on the controversial enhanced interrogation technique. [MP3 audio available here; video follows page break]