Yet another media outlet is writing Gov. Rick Perry’s political obituary after his GOP debate flub Wednesday night. This time it's Ross Ramsey, managing editor for the Texas Tribune, a nonprofit news organization that provides content to the New York Times: “National Spotlight Might Shine Too Bright for Gaffe-Prone Perry.”
The Times has certainly feasted on Perry’s flub, in which the Texas governor blanked out on naming the three government agencies he planned to eliminate. Thursday’s front page carried the story under the headline “‘Oops’ at Debate When Perry Can’t Get to Three,” and quoted the entire exchange in a text box on the jump page.
CNN's Wolf Blitzer – who will be moderating CNN's Republican presidential debate on November 22 – played a highlight reel of largely negative moments from the past GOP debates on Thursday afternoon's The Situation Room.
The "Top 10" video consisted of bloopers, controversial statements, and heated exchanges, all of which Blitzer innocently deemed "memorable moments." Rick Perry's most recent "brain freeze" was listed as the number one moment. [Video below the break. Click here for audio.]
The same network that treated then-candidate Obama with kid gloves about Reverend Wright demanded Rick Perry to explain how his campaign wasn't finished, in his interview on CNN's American Morning on Thursday.
Co-host Christine Romans scrutinized Perry over his forgetting one of the federal agencies he had promised to get rid of. However, she seemed to believe that his campaign was over because of the gaffe. "So my question to you is how is this not the end? Convince us that this is not the end of your – of your candidacy," she demanded of Perry during the 7 a.m. hour of CNN. [Video below the break. Click here for audio.]
Updated [11:41 ET]: More analysis and transcripts added.
Interviewing Texas Governor Rick Perry on Thursday's NBC Today, co-host Ann Curry asked the Republican presidential candidate about a flub in Wednesday's CNBC debate and wondered: "One of your fundraisers told The Wall Street Journal, simply, 'He just ended his campaign.' Have you thought about ending your campaign? Are you staying in this race, sir?" [Audio available here]
On CNN's American Morning, Christine Romans struck a similar tone with Perry: "How is this not the end? Convince us that this is not the end of your – of your candidacy....across the board you're hearing folks say that this was one of the worst, if not the worst, debate moment, those 54 seconds, you know, in modern primary history." [View video after the jump]
You have to wonder if a day has gone by since the September 7 GOP presidential debate without someone on MSNBC referring to audience members cheering when NBC's Brian Williams asked Texas governor Rick Perry about capital punishment in his state.
Likely the most colorful description of this incident to date occurred on Monday's Hardball when host Chris Matthews said Republicans "look hot and horny for executions out in that Reagan library" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Catching up with an admission from just after Tuesday’s Republican presidential candidate debate in Las Vegas, CNN’s Anderson Cooper lightheartedly conceded that when he confronted Herman Cain with his earlier criticism of the Occupy Wall Street protests, a criticism Cain reaffirmed to rousing audience applause, Cooper hadn’t intended it as a softball but as an embarrassing mis-cue from which he expected Cain to backtrack.
“Sort of teed it up for him there,” Cooper fretted in his post-debate hour after re-playing his exchange with Cain, “I didn’t really mean to. But he clearly just knocked that one out of the park. I mean, and it was obviously -- at least for this audience in this hall, that played very well.” (video below)
During a panel discussion on Friday's NBC Today, co-host Matt Lauer asked of the Occupy Wall Street protests: "What's the civics lesson in this for our kids as they're watching this on TV?" News anchor Natalie Morales argued: "...there's a huge civics lesson....the idea of having that civil discourse is important to teach our kids and it's something in history we've seen."
In contrast, moments later while discussing the latest Republican presidential debate, Lauer lectured Mitt Romney and Rick Perry on a heated exchange between them: "My parents, in teaching me manners, taught me, one, don't interrupt, bad on Rick Perry's point, keep your hands to yourself, bad on Mitt Romney's point." Weatherman Al Roker chimed in: "...we're seeing our kids are getting, again, this anti-teachable moment. Give somebody a chance to talk. They're just talking all over each other."
A lively GOP debate dissection on today's Morning Joe. Mika Brzezinski really liked Romney's performance, saying among other things that he was "fabulous." She also had surprising praise for Michelle Bachmann.
There was consensus that 9-9-9 was "deboned" and that Herman Cain hurt himself badly with his pre-debate answer on releasing terrorists from Gitmo. Meanwhile, Michael Steele had a striking way of saying that Perry's aggressiveness backfired. Video and more after the jump.
This weekend's syndicated Chris Matthews Show spent the entire first segment talking about how America wants more centrist politicians looking to compromise with their political rivals.
The host and his guests believe the Republican presidential candidate that best exemplifies this moderate stance is Mitt Romney, with Time's Joe Klein actually saying he gave on Tuesday "one of the most impressive, impeccable debate performances I’ve ever seen" - but the panel still thinks Romney's got a very serious Mormon problem (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Early this morning, I noted how two AP writers seemed to be hoping that former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney will be the Republican Party's presidential nominee, in the process ignoring inconvenient facts like his failure to get over 25% in any poll covered at Real Clear Politics since mid-July while failing to even mention Herman Cain's name until the report's eleventh paragraph (a Rasmussen poll today breaks Romney's three-month dry spell, showing him at 29%, tied with Herman Cain). Sadly, what the AP writes is important for readers to know, because the wire service's copy is read and relayed without question by most of its thousands of subscribing outlets.
Not that learning about the following is anywhere near as important, but in case you're wondering about the GOP presidential nominee preferences and perceptions among several of the pundits at the Washington Post, wonder no more:
Somebody needed to give Calvin Woodward and Christopher Rugaber at the Associated Press Five-Hour Energy drinks or some other boost before Tuesday night's GOP debate. Their brains must have totally turned off late in the afternoon without re-engaging before they filed their late-evening post-debate report.
Behold how the AP pair "proved" that excessive government regulation doesn't kill jobs (bolds are mine throughout this post):
As a service to the 10 people who will somehow manage to find the Bloomberg Television channel on their cable box tonight in order to watch the network's GOP presidential debate, Bloomberg News today published and the Washington Post syndicated a "Viewers' Guide to Economic Jargon."
While most of the article is helpful and unbiased, Bloomberg News seriously downplayed the scandalous nature of the ill-conceived Solyndra loan. Here's how Bloomberg defined the controversy surrounding the firm that was raided by the FBI in early September:
After the debate tomorrow night, the crop of current GOP presidential candidates will have participated in four nationally televised debates in just over one month, attracting record audiences and affecting poll numbers drastically each time.
According to a Wall Street Journal op-ed by Fred Barnes, the increased number of debates has had a major impact on the race, giving also-rans free publicity with no incentive to drop out and allowing the media to pit the candidates against each other, giving Obama a free pass.
Do you think Republicans have given the media too much power by hosting so many debates? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.
CNN's Jack Cafferty smeared entire crowds of people who attended recent GOP debates when he asked on Tuesday if they were "bloodthirsty."
"For the third time in as many debates, crowd members have either booed or cheered at what some say are highly inappropriate moments," Cafferty stated. He slammed both the crowd behavior and the Republican candidates for not denouncing such antics.
Former Congresswoman Jane Harman called out Bill Maher Friday evening for saying Fox News's Megyn Kelly was a "blonde twink" who's "not bright."
Appearing on HBO's "Real Time," Harman responded by noting that Maher had just minutes before discussed with author Ron Suskind the sexist treatment of women in the Obama White House, and then said, "I want to point out that the last time I was on this show, there were lots of women on. This time, I'm it. I'm blonde. Hey" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
In a Thursday morning post setting the table for last night’s Republican presidential debate in Orlando, New York Times chief “Caucus” blog reporter Michael Shear became the latest Timesman to falsely finger the Tea Party audience at a CNN debate last week as cheering on the prospect of letting a hypothetical man die for lack of health insurance.
Shear listed six things to watch for in Orlando last night. The last item:
Liberals watching CNN Friday morning would have been pleased by the "Political Buzz" segment that targeted Republicans for criticism and hyped the possible political career of Chelsea Clinton.
CNN reported that the "crowd" at Thursday's GOP debate booed a gay soldier serving in Iraq. From the video they provided of the incident, it was clear that a couple of rogue crowd members booed the man, and not the audience in general.
During a prerecorded commentary on CBS Sunday Morning, left-wing CBS commentator Nancy Giles complained about the "bloodlust" of GOP audience members who applauded Texas's use of capital punishment at the recent MSNBC debate and a small number of audience members who applauded at Monday's CNN debate after moderator Wolf Blitzer asked if someone who chose not to purchase insurance should be allowed to die.
CBS played a clip of the exchanges but notably left out Rep. Ron Paul's answer to Blitzer's question as he argued that organizations like churches used to help provide health care before Medicaid existed, leaving Giles to give the impression that Rep. Paul had been unconcerned about the uninsured dying. Giles:
Meet the Press host David Gregory contented the fact a Republican presidential debate audience applauded Texas Governor Rick Perry for allowing the death penalty for murders, and three in an audience of hundreds shouted “yeah” to the idea a man who decided to not buy health insurance may be allowed to die, are “really a challenge to the notion that the Republican Party is the party of life and supports a culture of life.” (video after jump)
CNN's political analyst David Gergen remarked Monday that many Americans were "horrified" at what they heard from the Republican presidential debate, co-sponsored by the Tea Party Express and CNN. "I was getting notes about they ought to keep this people locked up and not let them out. Don't let them do anything to the country," Gergen remarked.
Gergen's comments came in the post-debate analysis and during the 10 p.m. EDT hour of Anderson Cooper 360. He mentioned that Tea Partiers "loved the debate" and pitted them in contrast with the many on Twitter who expressed their disgust with the debate.
In an interview with Michele Bachmann on Tuesday's NBC Today, co-host Matt Lauer actually delayed discussion of job creation as he pushed her to attack Texas Governor Rick Perry: "We'll talk about jobs in a second, but I do want to stick on this controversy over...Perry mandating vaccinations for HPV."
Bachmann had attempted to begin on the subject of President Obama's jobs plan, but Lauer quickly steered her toward Republican infighting: "You not only question the policy [of mandating the HPV vaccine], but you questioned the motivation behind it, suggesting rather strongly that this could have been an attempt to appease a big drug company, Merck, because they contributed to his campaign. So I want you to lay this out for me. Is that what you are asserting?"
Wolf Blitzer will serve as the host of tonight’s “Tea Party debate” on CNN, co-sponsored by the Tea Party Express. But while Blitzer’s show plans to present questioners from the Tea Party, it’s likely Blitzer will "balance" that by pressing Republicans from the left, just as NBC’s Brian Williams did last week on MSNBC.
For example, four years ago, at the June 5, 2007 presidential debate, Blitzer asked Rep. Duncan Hunter why the party couldn’t be more liberal like movie-star governors: “Arnold Schwarzenegger, your Governor in California, has become very popular out there by bringing in independents and moderates, and trying to forge a consensus among Republicans and Democrats in your state. Shouldn’t the GOP nationally be following that Arnold Schwarzenegger example in California?” Blitzer also implied the sponsors of this CNN debate might be racists:
The day after the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, CNN asked if Republican presidential candidate Rick Perry was being a "bomb thrower" for vilifying Social Security as a Ponzi scheme.
After playing a clip of Perry calling the program a "monstrous lie" and a "Ponzi scheme," CNN's Kyra Phillips teed up Democratic strategist Maria Cardona with this question: "Bomb thrower or truth teller, Maria?" Cardona predictably replied that Perry was a "bomb thrower."
In next year's presidential election, the toughest opponent the eventual Republican nominee will face will be the liberal press. As a political neophyte who had not even completed a single term in the U.S. Senate prior to his election, Barack Obama was and is a creature of the media. Without the iron-clad grip that liberals hold on public discourse at the national level, there's simply no way that he ever would have been elected in 2008. His numerous subsequent failures have made it all the more necessary that liberal journalists come forward to obfuscate his failures and shift attention to attacks on Republicans. Fear and loathing is the new hope-a-dope.
There's a growing sense of this reality on the right which is why the focus in the primary season has increasingly turned to the self-proclaimed objective press, particularly during last night's debate hosted by NBC News and the Politico.
I blogged earlier about Newt Gingrich's attack on co-moderator John F. Harris but another moment of note last night was when Harris's colleague, NBC anchor Brian Williams, haughtily attacked the audience after it sarcastically cheered against his question to Texas governor Rick Perry about capital punishment.
NBC’s Brian Williams and Politico’s John Harris peppered the NBC News/Politico debate inside the Air Force One pavilion at the Reagan Library with questions from the left, repeatedly pressing the Republican presidential candidates with liberal talking points and Democratic agenda items.
That’s time which could have been better spent advancing issues and concerns of Republican primary voters interested in differences amongst the candidates, not in forcing the candidates to defend conservative positions despised by MSNBC viewers and hosts. (Compilation video after jump)
For reasons that are still inexplicable, the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation and Library agreed to partner up with NBC News, parent organization of the uber-left-wing network MSNBC to televise tonight's Republican presidential debate. While NBC representative Brian Williams had more than his share of sneering biased questions, it was Williams's co-moderator, Politico editor John Harris, who laid on the snark in his attempts to bait and attack the candidates.
Such unbalanced questioning is par-for-the-course for Republicans competing at the national level. More often than not, they take it in stride. Tonight, though, Newt Gingrich was having none of it as he went full-on after Harris's attempts to insert Gingrich into a non-existent debate about an individual mandate to purchase insurance at the national level that Republicans simply are not having. Video and transcript follow.
Update: NewsBusters publisher Brent Bozell has given his observations in a separate blog post accessible here.
Last night was the third Republican debate of the year, comprised of eight of the declared GOP candidates. All responded to hard-hitting questions from the Fox News and Washington Examiner moderators, debating foreign policy, the economy, and candidates' political records.
Tonight in Iowa, Republican presidential candidates will debate before a national audience. But, at least on page 14 of today's Chicago Tribune, a much bigger story concerns a little known homosexual activist, not in this evening's debate, who also seeks the GOP nomination. He admits to a childhood crush on Chuck Connors of TV's "The Rifleman," and stands about as much a chance of winning the GOP nod as the late Mr. Connors does.
The story, "Debate is gay candidate's primary aim," runs 25 paragraphs and approximately 1,200 words. Excerpted from an even longer article on the Chicago Tribune's Web site, it centers on an understandably less than optimistic candidate:
Just days before the Iowa Straw Poll, Republican presidential candidates face off tonight to debate at the Iowa State Fair. Absent from the debate are two rumored candidates, Gov. Rick Perry and Sarah Palin.
Included is the still wide field of GOP contenders, Mitt Romney, Rep. Michele Bachmann, Rep. Ron Paul, Herman Cain, Tim Pawlenty, Newt Gingrich, Rick Santorum, and Jon Huntsman. Will you be watching tonight?