On CNN’s Situation Room today, anchor Wolf Blitzer spoke of the 1995-1996 Federal government shutdown:
BLITZER: Yes, I would be shocked if there were a government shutdown. The Republicans lived through that back in the '90s and it didn't exactly work out well for them. I would be shocked if they went down that road and the president went down that road right now. I'm sure they will work that out.
So how bad was the political fallout for Republicans? That year the GOP nominated the uninspiring Sen. Bob Dole as their presidential nominee. Despite such a lackluster top of the ticket, House losses were only in the single digits. As former Speaker Newt Gingrich has noted “it was the first time in 68 years that Republicans were reelected to a House majority - and the first time that had ever happened with a Democrat winning the presidency.” On the Senate side, the GOP picked up two seats.
I presume everyone remembers how when the New York Times published information about a classified program designed to track the movement of alleged terrorist funding through the international banking system Bush administration officials threatened to prosecute Times reporters and management over what they had done? No you don't, because although some conservatives and Republicans thought it might be a worth considering it didn't happen. You can guarantee that if it had, it would have become a TV-radio-newspaper-Internet establishment press obsession for days on end.
Tonight, Washington Post's Bob Woodward alleged that because he is sticking to his guns in insisting that sequestration was the brainchild of the Obama White House, that it was personally approved by Obama, and that bringing up tax increases now to try to resolve the current sequestration impasse is "moving the goalposts," he has been threatened by "a very senior person" in the White House. Woodward said so on CNN's Situation Room earlier today. What's even more troubling is that Woodward told two Politico reporters the same thing yesterday, and that they appear to have sat on the revelation until this evening when the CNN interview forced their hand. Relevant portions of the CNN transcript and Politico column follow the jump.
CNN only had soft questions and praise on Thursday for Jimmy Carter's grandson who had unearthed the tape of Mitt Romney's "47 percent" remarks. Host Wolf Blitzer gave a warm interview to James Carter IV on The Situation Room and Piers Morgan later teed up former President Carter to brag about his grandson on Piers Morgan Tonight.
"How does it make you feel that your grandfather is so proud of what you did? What has he said to you?" Blitzer asked his Democratic guest. "He certainly was proud of you in the interview with Piers Morgan," he gushed. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
After hyping the "draconian" sequester cuts set to take place March 1, CNN kept up its frenzy on Tuesday afternoon by spreading government hysteria over the $85 billion spending reduction. Headlines sounded alarms like "Medicine, Food at Risk," "Travel Nightmare In the Making," and "U.S. justice system in jeopardy."
"President Obama is warning of dire consequences for all of us if lawmakers don't act quickly," The Situation Room host Wolf Blitzer channeled White House angst. "The President clearly wants all of us to be very, very worried about the budget axe that's about to fall," he hyped during the 6 p.m. ET hour. "The President has said it's an issue of national security," reported correspondent Joe Johns on cuts to the justice system. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
At what point will the public tire of liberal journalists lamenting that the Republican Party is overwhelmingly white and thrilled about it? They've been drawing that cartoon so long surely they'll eventually run out of ink. They love their 2012 narrative that every non-white group is rushing to Obama and the Left, and they want to keep it that way.
So what do you do when the GOP elects or nominates a black, or Hispanic (as they've done constantly)? You rip them personally, mercilessly. Ask Justice Thomas.
The liberal hosts on MSNBC just couldn't get enough of watching U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio reach for a glass of water and take a sip during his rebuttal of President Barack Obama's State of the Union address, airing the snippet a staggering 155 times during the Wednesday broadcast schedule, according to a tally by the Daily Caller.
Other cable news networks showed the footage far less often. CNN aired it 34 times, and Fox News Channel played it just 12 times -- all of which took place on “The O’Reilly Factor” and “Hannity” while the hosts discussed the media's obsession with the Florida Republican's “watergate” incident.
<<UPDATE BELOW>> On Wednesday's The Situation Room, host Wolf Blitzer absurdly wondered if Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) pausing his State of the Union response for a drink of water would "break" his career. The CNN chyron flashed "Career-ender?"
"So can a drink of water make or break a political career?" Blitzer asked. "A U.S. Senator, possible presidential candidate. We're going to find out, whether he likes it or not." [Video below the break. Audio here.]
Tony Bennett is one of America's most popular singers but he has proven once again that talent in the arts is no predictor of intelligence.
At a Wednesday press conference, the outspoken pacifist and ardent Democrat Bennett compared isolated gun deaths in the U.S. to Nazi concentration camps and said that if America did not do something to curtail violence in this country, the other countries would “take care of us in a really bad way,” just like they did in World War II to the Germans. Bizarre video and story below.
Viewers who tuned in to Wednesday's The Situation Room were bombarded with over five times as much coverage of gun control advocates than of the lone gun rights advocate Newt Gingrich.
Host Wolf Blitzer tossed plenty of softball questions to gun control advocates Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) and Mark Kelly, husband of former Congresswoman Gabby Giffords (D-Ariz.), but he grilled Gingrich on background checks.
After CNN televised Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's Congressional testimony on the Benghazi attack, on the 5 pm segment of The Situation Room Wolf Blitzer provided some analysis, including an interview with Senator Rand Paul (R-KY). Then Blitzer announced there was breaking news. He turned to CNN national correspondent Jim Acosta, who reported that Beyonce had - hold onto your remote here - lip-synced "The Star Spangled Banner" at President Obama's inauguration Monday:
After CNN correspondent Jim Acosta felt like pinching himself at Monday's inauguration parade, host Wolf Blitzer couldn't contain himself as he tried to get the attention of both President Obama and Vice President Biden.
Blitzer gushed that "Look, this is history over here," as the President and First Lady made their way down Pennsylvania Avenue toward the White House. He waved to Obama saying "Mr. President," but was drowned out by crowd noise. Blitzer did the same with Vice President Biden. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
It didn't take long for new Senator Ted Cruz (R-Tex.) to get lectured by liberal CNN. After Cruz told anchor Wolf Blitzer that he opposed the fiscal cliff deal, Blitzer reproved him and told him to "deal with reality."
"[Y]ou're in the minority in the United States Senate. You've got to deal with reality.You can't just be -- you can't just be overly idealistic on those issues," said Blitzer, who shed his objectivity to lecture a sitting congressman on what he should do. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
CNN's Wolf Blitzer said Thursday that the Democratic fiscal cliff plan of raising tax rates on the top two percent of income earners is the "beginning" of a solution.
"But it's a beginning. A billion here, a billion there, it winds up being real money," Blitzer told Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) on Thursday's The Situation Room. Blitzer had already pushed House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) to consider tax hikes in a fiscal cliff deal. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
After smiling on Republicans who stepped away from Grover Norquist's no-tax hike pledge, CNN pressured the GOP House Majority Whip to raise income tax rates on Monday's The Situation Room.
Anchor Wolf Blitzer suggested a tax hike on those making over $250,000 a year, noting "those families and those small businesses did quite well during the years of the Clinton administration when the rate was 39.6. Why not go back to that?" [Video below the break. Audio here.]
On Thursday's The Situation Room, host Wolf Blitzer played a montage of liberal comedians poking fun at election night coverage with the jokes overwhelmingly targeting Republicans and conservatives.
"Turns out it's not all bad news for the Republicans. I guess it seems depression is covered by ObamaCare," quipped Tonight Show host Jay Leno. "A big night for the Democrats, Obama won the electoral vote and the popular vote. Mitt Romney on the other side won the unpopular vote," Late Show host David Letterman derided Romney. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
President Obama had time to enjoy late night laughs with David Letterman while refusing to meet with America's Middle East ally, and yet CNN's Wolf Blitzer was just fine with that. It pays for a President to have friends in the media.
"In the scheme of things, who is going to get you more votes?" was Blitzer's excuse. "A meeting that could be tense with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu or go on Letterman and come across as well as he did last night?" [Video below the break. Audio here.]
CNN deemed it newsworthy enough to interview an Obama-supporting restaurant owner who gave the President a bear hug on the campaign trail. The Situation Room host Wolf Blitzer tossed softballs to guest Scott Van Duzer, a registered Republican, on Monday afternoon.
"It's the campaign stop everyone's talking about. The President of the United States got a lift, literally, from a super-enthusiastic supporter," Blitzer introduced the segment. "Congratulations. I love the bear hug," he told Van Duzer. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
The media reaction to President Obama's speech at the Democratic National Convention Thursday has been rather tepid so far.
On CNN, Wolf Blitzer said, "I thought there would be more specifics. There were a lot of goals expressed, generalities, a lot of stuff we’ve heard before. I didn’t hear any specific new initiative that the President unveiled."
Piers Morgan couldn't contain himself on Wednesday night as he adulated President Clinton as an "oratorical genius" who is "right up there with Churchill, Kennedy, MLK, and Mandela." CNN wasn't called the "Clinton News Network" for nothing.
"[T]hat was pound for pound, dollar for dollar, one of the great modern political speeches I have ever heard," sounded Morgan later on his show. He even asked on Twitter if Clinton could be British prime minister. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
CNN fawned over Michelle Obama's DNC speech on Tuesday, lauding it as "not hitting a home run but probably a grand slam," as Wolf Blitzer first put it.
"She did an amazing job for this President of the United States," gushed Blitzer. Anderson Cooper tweeted that "I've never heard such a well delivered speech by a First Lady ever." Piers Morgan argued that "Michelle Obama, I thought, knocked it out of the park as you Americans would say." [Video below the break. Audio here.]
Wolf Blitzer pressed Florida's GOP attorney general on Monday about the party platform's opposition to abortion in all cases, asking her if it was the "problem" Republicans had with women.
"Is that the problem that he has – that Romney, and Republicans for that matter, have with women?" Blitzer asked after reading the section of the GOP platform supporting a human life amendment to the Constitution. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
Instead of informing the public about Mitt Romney's energy plan unveiled on Thursday, CNN harped on a "distraction" in the form of Bain Capital documents released by the website Gawker.
Even an article on CNNMoney.com called the Bain files "worthless," and CNN reporters questioned the significance of the document dump, but correspondent Jim Acosta talked about it anyway on Thursday's The Situation Room, as a "headache" for Romney.
CNN's Wolf Blitzer resorted to using old footage of Democratic Senator John Kerry (Mass.) as a soldier to make his point about how the U.S. needs to speed up its troop withdrawal from Afghanistan.
"And I immediately recalled what Senator John Kerry told Congress when he returned from the Vietnam War four decades ago," Blitzer said Friday of when he got news of the deaths of American soldiers in Afghanistan. He aired footage of Kerry's 1971 testimony before Congress given as a soldier returning from Vietnam, where he called the war a "mistake" and challenged Americans to realize that. [Video below the break.]
Apparently CNN considers the stating of cold, hard economic realities to be risky partisanship now. Take the case of Papa John’s CEO John Schnatter claiming that ObamaCare will increase costs for his company.
Papa John's is not the first company to claim Obamacare will raise its costs, but it is the first to be viciously attacked by CNN. [Video follows page break; MP3 audio here.]
For the second straight day, CNN blew the whistle on a nasty and misleading Obama super PAC ad that ABC, CBS, and NBC entirely ignored as of Wednesday night. CNN hammered the ad, which links Mitt Romney to a woman's death from cancer, each hour from 6 p.m. through 10 p.m. and twice grilled the man responsible for the ad, Bill Burton of Priorities USA.
"I think it is deliberately mendacious," stated CNN's Piers Morgan on Wednesday. "It is a deliberate attempt to lie and smear about Mitt Romney. And I find it contemptible. I mean I'm really appalled." The three networks showed no such disdain for the ad which will air in battleground states, because they failed to even mention it on Tuesday and Wednesday. [Video coming soon.]
CNN's Wolf Blizer took a key Obama supporter to task on Wednesday over Vice President Biden's use of an anonymous quote to slam Mitt Romney. The Romney campaign had denied saying the racially-charged remark.
"[W]hy would a sitting vice president issue this condemnation of Mitt Romney and his campaign based on a British newspaper with some anonymous quote?" Blitzer asked on Wednesday's The Situation Room.
Other CNN reporters did not share Blitzer's skepticism, though, as five stories on the matter aired on Wednesday evening and Thursday morning with none of them challenging the appropriateness of Biden's remark. The story aired even though correspondent Jim Acosta admitted that the source for the alleged Romney adviser quote could not be independently confirmed. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
Is CNN campaigning for Rep. Joe Walsh's Democratic opponent? In a heated exchange with Walsh on Thursday, anchor Ashleigh Banfield rattled off a list of opponent Tammy Duckworth's accomplishments and admitted "she should get elected" if voters are pleased with her resume.
CNN gave much softer treatment to Duckworth on Friday. Host Wolf Blitzer did press her about controversial statements she has made, but also tossed her softball questions and gave her an opportunity to explain her stances on issues that matter to voters -- an opportunity CNN did not give Walsh.
Blitzer asked her softballs like "Do you have a problem that he [Walsh] never served in the military?" after Walsh had accused her of incessantly touting her own military service. [Video below the break.]