CNN harped on the controversy over Fox News head Roger Ailes calling President Obama "lazy" and Vice President Biden "dumb as an ashtray." The network covered it on five shows on Wednesday and Thursday, but three of the shows ignored that Ailes used Obama's own words.
In making the "lazy" remark, Ailes cited a 2011 interview with Barbara Walters where Obama said that "deep down, underneath all the work that I do, I think there's a laziness in me." Erin Burnett was the only CNN anchor to promptly give that context in her report; on Thursday's Starting Point, conservative panel member Will Cain first brought it up, and co-host John Berman affirmed it. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
CNN anchors have been turning to advocacy. Don Lemon didn't show a hint of journalistic integrity on Sunday's Newsroom as he ripped into conservative guest Will Cain and lectured him on the offensiveness of Mitt Romney's "gift" remarks, joining liberal journalist LZ Granderson in the leftist ambush.
"This is an astounding interview," Cain remarked, realizing he was outnumbered by two liberals. "I'm a little taken aback by the chorus of surprise. I really am. From both of you guys." Cain lashed out on Twitter after the ambush. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
When a news anchor's Obama-friendly question is slapped down by even a liberal columnist, it's whacky. CNN's Carol Costello wondered if Libya should even be a campaign issue, but both her guests -- liberal and conservative -- answered in a resounding affirmation on Monday.
Citing the father of dead Ambassador Chris Stevens, who deplored the tragedy becoming a campaign issue, Costello asked "So I think the Ambassador's father spoke out too late because Libya has already become a campaign issue. I guess the question is should it be?" [Video below the break. Audio here.]
CNN host Don Lemon cracked up over a raunchy joke about Michele Bachmann's husband, on Sunday night's 6 p.m. edition of Newsroom. Conservative guest Will Cain then confronted the openly-gay anchor over why it was okay to make fun of Bachmann appearing to be gay.
"If, as the joke suggests Marcus Bachmann is gay, but he hasn't come to grips with himself. Now, I'm asking two guys who've been through this process, honestly, I'm honestly curious, why is it okay to make fun of him then?" Cain inquired. Lemon "came out" about his orientation a year ago and expressed his wishes that prejudices about homosexuality would be overcome. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
After CNN contributor John Fugelsang agreed with the "substance" of Hilary Rosen's remarks on Ann Romney, conservative columnist Will Cain laid into him for "Balkanizing" the country into classes and sects. The exchange happened during the 7 a.m. hour of Starting Point.
Rosen, a Democratic activist, had sparked an outcry for saying Ann Romney had never worked a day in her life, but CNN host Soledad O'Brien stepped in and claimed people were missing the "whole point of what she was saying." Fugelsang, a liberal comedian and CNN regular, agreed. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
Once again, CNN hosted former Obama "green jobs" czar Van Jones, giving him plenty of air-time to tout his new book and defend himself against accusations from conservatives. Unsurprisingly, anchor Soledad O'Brien tossed mostly softballs at Jones on Wednesday's Starting Point.
However, even though O'Brien passsed on grilling the former Obama advisor, conservative guest Will Cain was up to the task. "You said you flirted with socialism, communism, various aspects," Cain told Jones, and asked "What I'm curious about is when you were inside, you were part of this administration. How much does your ideology reflect the ideology of the administration?" [Video below the break. Audio here.]
The folks at the Washington Post got exactly what they wanted with Sunday’s racially charged, 3000-word, front page hit piece about Texas governor Rick Perry.
CNN did two segments on N-ggerhead Sunday evening, one with host Don Lemon asking his guests, “Can a candidate recover once they've been associated with a controversy over the word n-gger?” (video follows with transcript and commentary):
On Tuesday morning, CNN's Kyra Phillips asked why the Republican presidential candidates have not been speaking out on foreign policy in Libya during the climactic battle in the country's capital between rebel and imperial forces. CNN had interviewed Republican candidate Jon Huntsman the night before, but had not yet asked him about the conflict in Libya, in the first of a two-part interview set to conclude Tuesday night.
"This week's battle in Libya, the first big chance for the GOP presidential hopefuls to show their foreign policy savvy," Phillips noted during the 10 a.m. hour of Newsroom. "Why haven't we heard from them?" she asked. Liberal CNN analyst Roland Martin subsequently hammered the Republicans as "wimps" for their silence.
ESPN's LZ Granderson labeled Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) as "crazy" Monday, and CNN anchor Kyra Phillips seemed to credit his judgment.
Granderson, a CNN contributor, said of a Bachmann candidacy that "the people aren't going to vote for crazy. And she [Bachmann] still registers as crazy with a lot of independents." Phillips immediately responded that "If you could go back decades, there's a lot of people who vote for crazy, guys."
At the end of February, when CNN unceremoniously dumped moderate sorta-Republican co-host Kathleen Parker from Parker Spitzer after just 20 weeks, CNN implied they weren't dumping a conservative-leaning angle from the new solo-Spitzer show. On March 1, they touted the "newbies" Will Cain of National Review and ex-Fox News anchor E.D. Hill -- as contributors, not really as co-anchors. But it now appears that within two months, Cain is the newest right-leaner to be quietly exiled.
A Nexis search shows Cain hasn't been on Spitzer's new show In The Arena since May 6, more than a month ago. He was a regular until April 7, and then only appeared on April 14 and 22. E.D. Hill, by contrast, is still appearing almost nightly.
Appearing as a guest on Monday’s Parker-Spitzer on CNN, Chrystia Freeland of Reuters claimed that the European economy is at an advantage compared to the U.S. because of America’s lack of universal health care. But, when fellow guest Will Cain of the National Review pointed out that America’s economy outperforms Europe, Freeland was only able to name one nation in Europe - Germany - whose economy is performing impressively. Freeland: "I also think it’s a little bit of a mistake to be talking about how bad European economies have been doing recently. ... if you look at the industrialized nations, Germany is racing ahead. German economic growth is on a tear, so is Canadian-
Cain jumped in: "I commend you on your choice of Germany, but you picked the one out of about 12."
Freeland persisted in promoting Germany as co-host Eliot Spitzer jumped in to agree:
CHRYSTIA FREELAND: Yeah, but Germany is doing fantastically well.
ELIOT SPITZER: And Germany is the largest economy in Europe and the one that is driving the export-driven economy where their labor capital relationship is very much one that follows the blueprint of a global, of universal health care.
Cain quipped: "Good job, guys, on using Germany. I’ve got Greece, Spain, U.K., France, all with universal health care, expansive health care coverages, and their economies are literally imploding."
On Tuesday's Parker-Spitzer on CNN, ex-Governor Eliot Spitzer ironically worried that too many of his fellow former politicians, who are also contenders for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination, are on Fox News: "Never before in our history...has one media outlet with one coherent ideology had almost a monopoly on...half of the presidential nominees and controlled one political party this way."
The disgraced former politician of Client Number Nine infamy raised the apparent problem during the first part of an interview of former MSNBC personality and Mediaite founder Dan Abrams. After noting that "Sarah Palin, Newt Gingrich, Mike Huckabee, Rick Santorum and John Bolton...[are] all running for president and, perhaps more important, they all work for Fox News," Spitzer highlighted a quote from Dick Morris, who stated the 2012 race for the Republican presidential nomination "will come to resemble American Idol, where we watch the candidates perform and vote on who we like best."