ABC, NBC, and CBS all reported on former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich receiving a 14-year prison sentence for corruption on their evening news programs on Wednesday and their morning shows on Thursday, but only CBS's Early Show gave his Democratic affiliation. ABC devoted only 3 news briefs total to the conviction, while NBC Nightly News and The Early Show aired full reports.
News anchor Jeff Glor introduced correspondent Michelle Miller's report on the CBS morning program at the bottom of the 7 am Eastern hour by stating that "Rod Blagojevich is paying a very high price for corruption. Is it too high? In Chicago Wednesday, a judge sentenced the former Illinois governor to 14 years in prison"
The Big Three network morning shows on Wednesday highlighted the upcoming sentencing of former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich, but only CBS's Early Show identified the disgraced politician as a Democrat and devoted a full segment to him. ABC's Good Morning America and NBC's Today omitted his party ID, and just gave news briefs on the convict's possible sentence.
CBS correspondent Cynthia Bowers wasted little time before noting that "the former Democratic governor was convicted on 18 counts of corruption, after being caught on a profanity-laced federal wiretap offering political favors in return for financial gain." Bowers played two sound bites from the wiretap recording, including the infamous "bleeping golden" clip from Blagojevich.
With the 2012 elections less than a year away, the liberal media are attacking President Obama's potential opponents on a number of fronts, but especially on religion. ABC, CBS and NBC have used religion in two ways, either painting the field of GOP primary challengers as a God Squad of religious zealots or playing up differences in their faith. Whether they're letting viewers know that "Rick Perry's gonna have to answer some questions about the people" he prays with, fretting that God "told Michele Bachmann," to enter politics, or devoting no less than 40 segments to the question of whether Mormonism is "a cult" or if "Mitt Romney is a Christian," the networks have repeatedly used faith against the GOP field.
Media preoccupation with the GOP candidates' faith is the exact opposite of how they covered (or didn't) candidate Obama's 20-year attendance at the church of a racist, anti-American pastor who subscribed to "black liberation theology," or Obama's half-Muslim heritage. The MRC's Culture and Media Institute studied network news reporting on the GOP candidates and religion from Jan. 1-Oct. 31, 2011, and compared it to coverage of the Democratic presidential primary candidates over the same period in 2007. The discrepancy, in both the amount and tone of the coverage, was striking. Network reporters, so disinterested in the beliefs of Obama and his rivals for the 2008 nomination, took every opportunity to inject religion into their coverage of the GOP field. (CMI's key findings after the jump)
NewsBusters readers should be quite familiar with Ron Christie, the Republican strategist who loves to tangle with the liberal commentators on MSNBC.
Following his terrific encounter with Chris Matthews last week, NewsBusters spoke by phone with Christie about his experiences on the nation's most left-leaning cable news outlet as well as what it's like to be a black conservative in the year 2011 (video follows with transcript):
A frequent emailer who happens to be a retired and now-disgusted journalist sent me a link to an Associated Press item by Philip Elliott and which is so over-the-top that you hope that Phil is on the White House payroll. At least then he'd have a justification for a hit piece which might as well have been written by David Axelrod (well, maybe it really was).
By the time I got to "FACT CHECK: GOP field flubs, big and small," Elliott's excretion was far longer. I did find the original elsewhere and want to point to the statement which got my emailer appropriately exercised:
Recently on Morning Joe it was Jon Meacham suggesting that Barack Obama doesn't particularly like people and was in the wrong line of work. Today it was Tina Brown's turn, opining that PBO doesn't dig his gig.
Discussing PBO's ever-paltrier poll numbers, Brown opined that Obama "doesn't like his job." Video after the jump.
CBS's Early Show on Wednesday boosted a claim by Democrats that a recent Mitt Romney ad takes a line from a 2008 speech by then-candidate Barack Obama out of context. However, CBS noted at that time that Obama was using that line to counter a McCain campaign ad which played up the Democrat's association with left-wing terrorist Bill Ayers.
Anchor Erica Hill raised the controversy over the Romney ad towards the end of a segment with political correspondent Jan Crawford about the most recent Republican presidential debate. After playing the relevant part of the commercial, which includes a clip of Obama stating that "if we keep talking about the economy, we're going to lose," Hill asked, "A lot of controversy over that ad, Jan. Why?"
As NewsBusters previously reported, MSNBC's Chris Matthews on Saturday expressed his harshest criticism of Barack Obama to date saying amongst other things that he's got "the worst kind of a notion of the presidency."
Roughly three months ago, Matthews on the syndicated weekend program bearing his name smelled racism in the declining number of whites supporting the current White House resident (video follows with transcript and commentary):
CNN's White House correspondent Dan Lothian made headlines with his ridiculous softball question to President Obama on Sunday. However, as NewsBusters has documented, Lothian has posed such a soft question to Obama before, and has shown some liberal bias in his past reporting.
Lothian asked the President at Sunday's press conference in Hawaii if he thought the Republican candidates, who supported the practice of waterboarding, were "uninformed, out of touch, or irresponsible." Fox News analyst Bernie Goldberg later called it "the most ridiculous question I have ever heard by a regular reporter from a so-called mainstream news outfit. Ever." [Video of the question below the break. Click here for audio.]
In Hawaii today, according to an Associated Press dispatch filed by Ben Feller, President Barack Obama is reported to have told supporters that, in Feller's words, "everything they worked for and that the country stands for is on the line in his 2012 re-election bid."
Well, if what those donors have "worked" for is an inside track to government money, and if what the country stands for is crony capitalism, the President is right. The following excerpt from Peter Schweizer's new book, "Throw The All Out," provides the details in just one commercial arena (via The Daily Beast; HTs to Doug Ross, Conservatives4Palin, Victory Chronicles, and Heritage; bolds are mine; extra paragraph breaks added by me):
Good Morning America co-host Robin Roberts bashed her own network, Monday, decrying GMA's obsession with tabloid stories. In a Daily Beast article, she lamented, "I’ll be honest, it’s been an adjustment for me, the lighter fare...I want to be No. 1. I don’t want to sell my soul to the devil to be No. 1."
The Howard Kurtz piece contained several gossipy nuggets, including a possible icy relationship between Roberts and co-host George Stephanopoulos. Kurtz related that the two "almost never chat during the show when the cameras are off, with Stephanopoulos usually tapping on his BlackBerry."
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.]
If you needed any more evidence of the political leaning of CNN, consider that much like Politico, it has in the last six days done at least 94 reports on the sexual harassment allegations involving Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain.
Substantially more shocking, according to LexisNexis, the supposedly most trusted name in news only did 77 total stories on Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama's ties to domestic terrorist Bill Ayers, convicted real estate developer Tony Rezko, and America-hating Rev. Jeremiah Wright.
In an article for Roll Call on Wednesday about Connecticut Senator Joe Lieberman, David Drucker included a quote from left-wing lobbyist Jimmy Williams, who ranted: "...many in the Democratic caucus see Sen. Lieberman as a mosquito....The bad news is he has sucked enough blood from both sides of the aisle. The good news is winter is coming, meaning his time in the Senate will thankfully come to an end."
Given the refusal of the media to acknowledge the strain of anti-Semitism currently on display in the radical left Occupy Wall Street protests, it's troubling that Roll Call would choose to include such an offensive quote from Williams in its reporting. Especially as Lieberman nears the end of his tenure in office.
Is it possible for the press to gush and fawn over Barack Obama during this upcoming presidential campaign as much as they did in 2008?
Political analyst Bernie Goldberg, appearing on Fox News's O'Reilly Factor Monday, didn't think so claiming instead, "If they slobber all over him as much this time as they did last time, the media and the President would have to get a room" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
The easy catch in former Obama administration economic adviser Austan Goolsbee's Thursday interview on MSNBC's "Morning Joe," as reported by the Politico's Tim Mak, is that he believes that "if given a second chance he would not have backed the Cash for Clunkers program or the home buyer tax credit." Goolsbee's excuse for his changed position -- that the administration didn't think the recovery would take so long, when the administration's policies have primarily explain why the recovery has taken so long -- is characteristically lame.
Something else Goolsbee said is far more surprising -- so surprising that one wonders if famed supply-side economist Arthur Laffer somehow temporarily took over the former Obama adviser's mind and body. One also wonders why Mak saved what Goolsbee said for his report's final two paragraphs instead of headlining and leading with it.
Updated [11:34 ET]: More analysis and full transcript added. Guthrie takes swipe at GOP 2012 field.
On Friday's NBC Today, fill-in co-host Savannah Guthrie grilled Arizona Senator John McCain on his criticism of Barack Obama's foreign policy positions in the 2008 campaign and urged: "Bin Laden is gone. Anwar al Awlaki, who was the rising star in al Qaeda, is gone. Qadhafi is gone. Drone strikes have intensified greatly....Given the track record now in office, would you change your opinion, sir?" [Audio available here]
Prior to that, Guthrie pressed McCain on his early criticism of Obama's handling of Libya: "You were an early supporter of U.S. intervention in Libya, and yet, you harshly criticized the President for how he went about it. At this moment, given that Qadhafi is gone, are you willing to give the President credit, unqualified credit, for how he handled this?" [View video after the jump]
The front page of The Washington Post carried a story Tuesday on black liberals demanding all blacks stand with President Obama -- just because he's black. Krissah Thompson's story carried some noteworthy "get in line" quotes from the forget-the-black-unemployment-numbers crowd, but the closest thing to a moderate or conservative in the article is a man suggesting Obama is not God.
On the front page, Thompson quoted from radio host Tom Joyner on his BlackAmericaWeb.com blog. “Let’s not even deal with the facts right now. Let’s deal with just our blackness and pride — and loyalty. We have the chance to re-elect the first African-American president, and that’s what we ought to be doing. And I’m not afraid or ashamed to say that as black people, we should do it because he’s a black man.”
October 17, 2011 will be President Obama's 1000th day in office. At the beginning of his term in office, in a February 1, 2009 interview with Matt Lauer, Obama said "If I don’t have this [economy fixed] in three years, then there’s going to be a one-term proposition."
At 1000 days in, do you think Obama will see reelection? Check out a comprehensive report card of his first 1000 days after the break and let us know your thoughts in the comments.
The Occupy Wall Street protestors have received overwhelmingly positive coverage from the Big Three (ABC, CBS, NBC) news networks, as they used their airtime to publicize and promote the aggressively leftist movement. In just the first eleven days of October, ABC, CBS and NBC flooded their morning and evening newscasts with a whopping 33 full stories or interview segments on the protesters. This was a far cry from the greeting the Tea Party received from the Big Three as that conservative protest movement was initially ignored (only 13 total stories in all of 2009) and then reviled.
Where the Tea Party was met with skeptical claims of their motivations -- with some reporters claiming they were merely corporate backed puppets and others implying they were spurred on by their racist opposition to the first black president – the Occupy Wall Street crowd was depicted as an almost genial “grassroots” movement.
Thanks, Reverend Al. Really. Sure, we know that the left is all about the redistribution of wealth rather than its generation. Still, it's instructive to hear a leading lefty say it in such stark terms. As clear a statement of the manifesto since candidate Obama told Joe The Plumber that "spread the wealth around" is the way to go.
On his MSNBC show this evening, Sharpton declared that his view of the Occupy Wall Street movement is that it should be about "really, how we distribute the wealth in this country." View video after the jump.
It's becoming quite clear that there's no rock some members of the media won't crawl from under to trash Sarah Palin.
Case in point - MSNBC's Martin Bashir used his final segment Thursday to eulogize Apple's Steve Jobs as "the very best of American exceptionalism" while in the same breath attacked the former Alaska governor as "the very worst form of American opportunism" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
The ABC and NBC morning and evening newscasts on Sunday gave attention to President Obama's attack on the Republican presidential candidates for not scolding a couple of audience members who booed a gay solder asking a question at a recent debate. Monday's "Special Report with Bret Baier" on FNC noted that Obama has his own history of standing by without condemning inappropriate comments at public events.
"It's important for us to pause for a moment and make sure that we're talking with each other in a way that -- that heals, not in a way that wounds." -- President Obama, speech at Tuscon memorial service, January 12, 2011.
"The [Suskind] book amounts to a drive-by shooting of a president and his key economic advisers who deserve encomiums, not unfounded second guessing and inaccurate revisionist history." -- Former Obama car czar Steve Rattner, writing at the Politico, October 2, 2011 [emphasis added].
Where have you gone, President Hope-and-Change? Less than nine months after President Obama pronounced pious words about talking "in a way that heals, not in a way that wounds," the Obama White House sends out a designated hitter to accuse a respected author of a "drive-by shooting" of the president and his advisers. Nice. [Via Mike Allen's Politico Playbook.]
President Moment-The-Planet-Began-To-Heal: just a regular guy! Let's get the weekend off to a smiling start with this rib-tickler, courtesy Joe Biden. In a fundraising email I just received from the Obama campaign website [of whose email list of course I'm a proud member], good old Joe claimed, with a straight cyber-face:
"This has never been about Barack and me. We're just two guys."
Does Chris Matthews listen to himself talk? On Thursday's Hardball, the MSNBC anchor told top McCain '08 aide Steve Schmidt, "We were all rooting for you, by the way. And a lot of us in this business like John McCain a lot."
The cable anchor who famously informed America that Barack Obama gave him a "thrill" up his leg, added, "He didn't think we did and we were tough on him last time. I liked Obama. But I tell you, I've always liked McCain."