While GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney was concluding his three-country tour with a stop in Poland on Monday, National Public Radio analyst Cokie Roberts was accusing the former Massachusetts governor of having a one-word reason for visiting that nation: race.
During the Monday morning edition of “Week in Politics,” host Linda Wertheimer asked Roberts, who is also a commentator for ABC News, what Romney had hoped to accomplish during his time in Poland.
On Tuesday's NBC Nightly News, anchor Brian Williams smugly dismissed Mitt Romney's overseas trip as having, "ended today almost the way it started here in London, with controversy, some hurt feelings, and some raw tempers. Campaigning back home in the states is hard enough. The stakes weren't supposed to be this high for the campaign overseas." [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
Correspondent Peter Alexander followed: "...this trip has been supposed to be, according to his advisors, a low-risk one....But it was at times marred by missteps. Romney offending his Olympic hosts and Palestinian leaders."
I am pumped up about Mitt Romney's speech in Israel — for both political reasons and policy ones — and believe it may represent a turning point in the campaign.
Politically — and this is important because it is critical that he win, or he won't be able to implement any policies and set America back on the road to recovery — Romney has shown again he is going to take the gloves off, deal with the issues directly and draw a stark contrast between his policies and Obama's record. The significance of this cannot be overstated. Some of the reasons John McCain lost in 2008 were his lackluster campaign, his refusal to showcase Obama's extreme liberalism and, thus, his failure to demonstrate why he would make a better president than Obama.
Good Morning America's hosts and reporters on Tuesday eagerly pushed Democratic talking points about Mitt Romney's overseas trip, deriding it five times as either a "misstep" or a "gaffe." Guest host Josh Elliott blamed the Republican's campaign for an altercation between a journalist and a staffer: "And new this morning, Mitt Romney's aide gets nasty with the press, swearing at reporters asking questions about the candidate's recent missteps."
As Romney walked back to his motorcade in Poland, just after visiting the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, reporters screamed questions. Elliott reminded, "Reporters were asking about the recent missteps made by Mitt Romney on his overseas trip." Journalist David Muir continued the media narrative, asserting that "the press pool began asking about his latest perceived misstep." [See a video montage below. MP3 audio here.]
CNN excused reporters for shouting questions that could have passed for heckling outside a sacred site in Poland, but ripped a Mitt Romney aide for responding by cursing at them. On Thursday morning, CNN's Jim Acosta dismissed any controversy over the loaded questions in a completely self-righteous narrative.
Acosta excused reporters, "it's really no surprise really, that the press tried their best to get a question to him today," despite the shouted questions coming outside Poland's Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. "I think it should also be noted that this press aide, and what he said to us, was really inexcusable." [Video below the break. Audio here.]
On Tuesday's NBC Today, campaign correspondent Peter Alexander attempted to spin bad behavior by reporters covering Mitt Romney's trip to Poland as a new controversy for the presidential campaign: "This morning, after reporters tried to shout questions to Romney while he left a plaza near the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier....A campaign spokesman angrily intervened....The spokesman later called reporters to apologize." [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
The report featured a clip of one female reporter screaming at Romney: "Governor Romney, do you feel that your gaffes have overshadowed your foreign trip?!" A campaign aide chastised: "This is a holy site for the Polish people. Show some respect." He could be heard saying: "Shove it. Shove it." That same aide reportedly also said "Kiss my ass," but NBC did not include that in its coverage.
Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney is being reamed by liberals in the media for a supposed gaffe in stating that Israel is much more successful economically than territories under Palestinian control because of its "culture."
Rich Lowry explains how that is perfectly true in a piece at National Review Online today. The long and short of it is that Western classically liberal values like the rule of law, representative democracy, religious tolerance/diversity, free speech and secure property rights are hallmarks of Israel's civil society that are woefully lacking in both the West Bank and Gaza Strip:
Sunday on ABC, as Rush Limbaugh noted on his show yesterday, Obama campaign senior adviser and former White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs called GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney a "schoolyard bully."
Just a couple of hours later (the time stamp is noon on Sunday), what little is left of Newsweek published "Mitt Romney's Wimp Factor." Zheesh -- So which is it?
"There is absolutely no way Barack Obama can win reelection running on his record and the news media know this," NewsBusters publisher Brent Bozell told Fox News's Eric Bolling at the top of today's Your World with Neil Cavuto.
Newsweek's current edition, featuring the headline, "The Wimp Factor: Is he [Mitt Romney] just too insecure to be president?" is just the latest example of the media's attempt to distract the American public from the president's dismal economic record, the Media Research Center president told Bolling, who was substituting for Cavuto. [MP3 audio here; Video follows page break]
For the second day in a row, Bob Schieffer spotlighted Newsweek's "The Wimp Factor" cover story on Mitt Romney, this time on Monday's CBS This Morning. Schieffer played up the potential negative impact that the liberal magazine's attack could have on the GOP presidential candidate, and concluded that "this did not help Mitt Romney, and my feeling is it probably hurt him."
The Face The Nation host also claimed that "if you gave Governor Romney some truth serum and people in his campaign...I think they would probably say they are concerned about this. I mean, this article was savage. It was brutal. How could you not have some reaction to it?"
Newsweek's print magazine has slid steeply toward irrelevance, but that didn't stop CNN from airing its latest hit piece on Romney's "wimp problem" on Monday. CNN devoted over 12 minutes of coverage on its morning shows to the attack disguised as a cover story and authored by a liberal journalist.
Early Start anchor John Berman hyped the "pretty brutal" portrait of Romney and even ventured to call former President George H.W. Bush a "wimp." Starting Point anchor Soledad O'Brien read aloud one of the nasty passages, giving the liberal screed even more attention.
In a news brief on Monday's NBC Today, anchor Natalie Morales touted how "Palestinian leaders are slamming Mitt Romney" for remarks he made during a "fundraising visit" to Israel: "Romney sparked outrage by suggesting that he would move the U.S. embassy in Israel to Jerusalem, calling it Israel's 'capital city.' Palestinian leaders say the comment is, quote, 'unacceptable.'"
Sunday's CBS Evening News and the NBC Nightly News tried to spin negatively a vague statement by Mitt Romney advisor Dan Senor that the GOP presidential candidate would "respect" the Israeli government's decision if it chose to attack militarily Iran's nuclear capability, suggesting that the Romney campaign's words amounted to a criticism of the Obama administration, and thus a breach of protocol that American politicians in a foreign land should not criticize the U.S. government.
But the effort to paint the statement into a gaffe contrasts with the media silence in July 2008 when then-Senator Barack Obama, during a trip to Israel as he campaigned for the White House, claimed to be a member of a Senate committee on which he did not serve, in an effort to portray himself as tough on Iran, as he tried to take credit for the actions of the Senate Banking Committee.
"Someone should have told Mitt Romney that they still speak English in England," snarked Washington Post political reporter Chris Cillizza as he awarded Romney the "Worst Week In Washington" on Sunday for calmly laying out security concerns to NBC before the London Olympics -- concerns the networks themselves reported beforehand.
That matches the attitude that political reporter Philip Rucker brought to his Romney story's lede on Saturday: "Mitt Romney’s Friday was better than his Thursday. He did very little." Cillizza said Romney "seemed to be talking in a foreign language, politically speaking," and once again, the Post cited the "Mitt the Twit" headline:
A left-wing writer for a liberal magazine wrote an article trying to undermine the Republican presidential candidate, a cover story which featured an insulting characterization. But instead of treating the attack as irrelevant, CBS’s Face the Nation decided to showcase it. “I just got a copy of the Newsweek cover that’s going to be hitting the newsstands tomorrow that calls you a ‘wimp,’” reporter Jan Crawford told Mitt Romney in Israel. “Have you seen this?”
In the next segment, host Bob Schieffer put the cover on screen as he cued up DNC chair Deborah Wasserman-Schultz:
I’m going to ask you about this new edition of Newsweek. They have on the cover Mitt Romney and it says “The Wimp Factor.” Now this is reminiscent of a sort of an infamous Newsweek cover back when the first George Bush was running for, running and it said -- they put out a cover that said “Fighting the ‘Wimp Factor.’” Is Mitt Romney a wimp?
In the kerfuffle over the initial refusal by Mitt Romney's campaign to allow reporters into a fundraising event to take place at an Israeli hotel on Monday, a position the campaign reversed late yesterday (early morning in Israel), the Associated Press's Kasie Hunt had, to say the least, an interesting take on property rights, while clearly misstating how the Obama campaign has handled press access.
For the past two weeks Barack Obama's media minions have been working overtime trying to convince the American people the President was taken out of context during his now infamous "You Didn't Build That" speech in Roanoke, Virginia.
CNN's Donna Brazile and the Washington Post's Ruth Marcus tried making that pathetic claim on ABC's This Week Sunday only to receive a much-needed education from George Will and Breitbart.com's Dana Loesch (video follows with transcript and commentary):
New York Times economic columnist Paul Krugman made a statement Sunday about the looming end of the year tax hikes and spending cuts that is likely to raise some eyebrows on both sides of the aisle.
Appearing on CNN's Fareed Zakaria GPS, Krugman said, "If Obama’s reelected, I think that there’s a quite good chance that for a month or two we actually will go off the cliff" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
You know, President Obama is such a constructive guy. Why, he's a veritable Mr. Sunshine like Chicago Cubs baseball Hall of Famer Ernie Banks. He hardly ever goes after presidential opponent Mitt Romney with harsh criticism. When he does, it's a "rare swipe."
That's what Jim Kuhnhenn at the Associated Press told his readers yesterday in his coverage ("New day, old bickering on taxes between Obama, GOP") of the President's weekly radio address and related matters. Kuhnhenn, who between shifts as a reporter must live in a hermetically sealed cave, wrote the following:
You know, it's bad enough that a percentage of Americans admit to getting "the news" from Comedy Central's Daily Show and host Jon Stewart.
But when a legal affairs correspondent from National Public Radio starts citing highly-edited videos created by this comedy show to bash presumptive Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney while defending President Obama, citizens should be tremendously concerned about their tax dollars funding this media outlet (video follows with transcript and commentary, file photo):
In a live interview with Mitt and Ann Romney on Friday's NBC Today, co-host Matt Lauer fretted over the "very negative" presidential race and wondered: "Are you proud of the campaign you're running so far? Is this the campaign you'd like to run?"
Romney responded: "I'm very proud of the fact that my campaign is focused on the economy. It's focused on my vision for what I do to get more jobs for America. And about the President's-" Lauer interrupted: "And what President Obama has done wrong with the economy." Lauer pressed: "Do you think your campaign has been less negative than the Obama campaign?"
Like all the other Obama-friendly media, NPR on its evening show All Things Considered devoted time to putting Obama’s “you didn’t build that” outburst “in context.” Co-host Audie Cornish promised, “In a few minutes, we'll listen to exactly what the president said in context.” They offered Obama a 70-second soundbite.
But first, Cornish turned to NPR correspondent Scott Horsley, who spent 90 seconds unloading how the businesses the Romney campaign is using to rebut Obama’s remark are all beneficiaries of government largesse:
Talking to special correspondent Tom Brokaw about Mitt Romney's 10-day international tour on Thursday's NBC Today, co-host Savannah Guthrie suggested the effort was a mistake: "Is it a smart idea, an opportunity to look presidential? Or is it a week lost when he could be driving that message on the economy?"
Brokaw's first reaction was to gush over Barack Obama's 2008 trip abroad: "I actually interviewed President Obama, then-Senator, here in London after a very successful trip. Times were different. There was no Arab Spring at that time, Europe was not yet in an economic meltdown, this was a fresh face after eight years of George W. Bush, who was not popular." Brokaw then added: "But it's mandatory for a presidential candidate to make these kind of tours."
On Thursday's CBS This Morning, Charlie Rose and John Dickerson shamelessly defended President Obama's "you didn't build that" comments on business. Rose asserted, "If you look at the full context of that He was talking about building roads to these businesses, and they didn't build the roads."
Dickerson invoked a liberal slogan from the 1990s: "What the President was saying, is it takes a village essentially, to use a cliche from a previous campaign; that no matter what you've done, you've been helped in your life, whether it's by teachers or roads or the policeman on the corner."