Debates

By NB Staff | October 11, 2012 | 8:52 PM EDT

Will you be tuning in to the vice presidential debate tonight? If so, please join fellow NewsBusters readers for a running commentary and discussion of the contest between current veep Joe Biden and Republican rival Paul Ryan. The debate starts at 9:00 PM Eastern time.

Note: You will need a browser that has Flash to participate in the chat.

By Ryan Robertson | October 11, 2012 | 7:24 PM EDT

On the eve of the vice presidential debate, President Obama sat down for an exclusive interview with Diane Sawyer on ABC's World News.

When she asked what his message would be to Joe Biden as he prepares himself to go up against Paul Ryan in Kentucky, Obama humorously answered the pointless question without hesitation -- smiling as he did. [ video below, MP3 audio available here ]

By Matt Vespa | October 11, 2012 | 6:45 PM EDT

With the Vice Presidential debate hours away, new developments concerning its moderator, Martha Raddatz have been disturbing. As Joel B. Pollak at Breitbart reported today, during the 1990 Massachusetts gubernatorial race, Raddatz, who was then known as Martha Bradlee (she was married to Ben Bradlee Jr.), moderated the debate where, like a good race-baiting liberal, she asked Democratic candidate John Silber “why he had not campaigned more frequently in poor minority communities, prompting him to respond: "There is no point in my making a speech on crime control to a group of drug addicts." 

By Noel Sheppard | October 11, 2012 | 5:56 PM EDT

As Election Day nears, the on air personalities at MSNBC are dropping all pretense of impartiality and journalistic integrity.

On Thursday's Hardball, at the conclusion of a lengthy segment about the upcoming vice presidential debate, host Chris Matthews actually said, "Biden better win" (video follows with commentary):

By Matt Hadro | October 11, 2012 | 3:25 PM EDT

On Thursday's CBS This Morning, co-hosts Charlie Rose and Norah O'Donnell waited until the fifth interview question to press Obama adviser David Axelrod about the fiasco in Libya. The question wasn't even a tough one, basically asking for the administration's spin.

"David, the consequences of what happened in the death of the Ambassador in Libya has caused some scrutiny in those incidents in the security there, and people are writing in editorials this morning that perhaps there was some pressure on Ambassador Rice to say what she said," Rose brought up the charges against the administration. "What is the response of the President to these questions and charges?" he asked.

By Matthew Sheffield | October 11, 2012 | 1:55 PM EDT

You would think that as poorly as President Obama did in his first debate with Mitt Romney last week that his supporters would want to stop talking about the embarrassment. Instead, the very opposite is true. Denizens of the fevered swamps of the online left not only want to talk about it, they also want to embarrass themselves by concocting all sorts of crazy theories about how Romney somehow "cheated" to win.

The Obama campaign is having none of that, however, telling Fox News that it's had absolutely nothing to do with spreading the nonsense idea that Romney had managed to smuggle in a "cheat sheet" into the debate and read answers from it. When asked about whether it was trying to spread the theory, the campaign responded emphatically, "No — We’ve never casted our lot with the tinfoil hat crowd."

By Tim Graham | October 11, 2012 | 1:40 PM EDT

When Congressman Paul Ryan was named Mitt Romney’s running mate, one of the dominant liberal-media spin lines is that his budget proposal would “slash Medicare.” Everyone knows that Medicare spending is never “slashed,” but there are proposals to slow it from its skyrocketing trend line.

ABC reporter Martha Raddatz, who will moderate Ryan’s debate with Vice President Biden, used exactly this kind of misleading terminology against President Bush on February 4, 2008: "The President’s budget slashes billions of dollars in the growth of federal health care programs. Medicare and Medicaid would be cut by almost $200 billion."

By Kyle Drennen | October 11, 2012 | 12:58 PM EDT

While the ABC and CBS morning shows on Thursday focused on a tightening presidential race following Mitt Romney's winning performance in the first debate, on NBC's Today, political director Chuck Todd used the network's new swing state polling to argue that the debate was "not as helpful to Romney as he might have hoped." Prompting co-host Savannah Guthrie conclude: "Alright, so the debate had maybe not as much of an impact."

In contrast, opening CBS This Morning, co-host Charlie Rose announced: "New polls show the race between President Obama and Governor Mitt Romney is getting tighter." Similarly opening ABC's Good Morning America, co-host George Stephanopoulos proclaimed: "High stakes and high pressure as new polls show Mitt Romney closing the gap in some key states."

By Brent Baker | October 10, 2012 | 9:21 PM EDT

ABC’s Diane Sawyer spent a solid four minutes of her interview with President Barack Obama, as excerpted at the top of Wednesday’s World News, channeling liberal angst over Obama’s debate performance – and that’s before she allocated more than a minute to cuing up Obama to denounce a Mitt Romney comment on abortion. She prompted Obama with a harsh assessment of Romney: “Is it a lie?”

“Libya” was not even uttered in the Sawyer-Obama segment. Viewers had to wait until the next story, by Jake Tapper, on the House hearing which laid out the administration’s dissembling on what happened in Libya when Ambassador Chris Stevens was murdered. Then viewers got 20 seconds -- more than half of that consumed by Obama’s defense and assurance he’ll “fix” anything that wasn’t done properly.

By Kyle Drennen | October 10, 2012 | 3:33 PM EDT

On Wednesday's NBC Today, co-host Matt Lauer cited left-wing Daily Beast columnist Andrew Sullivan ripping apart President Obama's bad debate performance: "I've never seen a candidate this late in the game so far ahead just throw in the towel in the way Obama did last week. How do you erase that imprinted first image from public consciousness, a president incapable of making a single argument or even a halfway decent closing argument?"

Lauer employed the quote in an interview with Obama campaign advisor Robert Gibbs and worried: "So with the second debate just a week away, Robert, does President Obama understand what he did wrong? Does he agree that he took the wrong approach?" Gibbs acknowledged: "...the President understands that he didn't even live up to his own high expectations for that debate."

By Noel Sheppard | October 10, 2012 | 9:05 AM EDT

As NewsBusters reported, MSNBC's Chris Matthews had an on air meltdown following Barack Obama's terrible performance in last Wednesday's debate with Mitt Romney.

On Tuesday, CBS Late Show host David Letterman ended his monologue by showing a video of Matthews' head exploding (video follows with transcribed highlights and commentary).

By Matthew Sheffield | October 10, 2012 | 6:59 AM EDT

The liberal media/politician/bureaucrat revolving door spins so rapidly, sometimes it's hard to keep pace. Today we learn via the Daily Caller that the moderator for tomorrow's vice presidential debate, ABC News reporter Martha Raddatz, hosted President Obama as a guest at her 1991 wedding to the man who would later become Obama's FCC commissioner, Julius Genachowski.

That's shocking enough in its own right but things are further compounded by the fact that ABC News, home of veteran Democratic adviser George Stephanopoulos, has long known about this conflict of interest and did nothing about it. Even worse, the network has actively tried to prevent the public from learning of it.