As we've noted, the liberal media generally and the Big Three broadcast networks in particular have studiously avoided paying attention to the Kermit Gosnell murder trial. The Philadelphia abortionist is charged with murdering newborns who survived abortion attempts and were born alive.
But aside from the criminal aspect of the case, there's other angle in the Gosnell matter that is of interest to political observers of the 2014 election cycle, particularly the Pennsylvania governor's race. One of the Democrats vying for the nomination to challenge Gov. Tom Corbett (R) is Rep. Allyson Schwartz (D-Pa.), who operated an abortion clinic from 1975-1988. J.D. Mullane of the Bucks County Courier News has some great, incisive questions for Schwartz connected to the Gosnell matter, particularly whether Schwartz ever referred any patients to Gosnell. Her clinic stopped performing abortions in 1984, but continued with issuing referrals to other clinics. Schwartz has been curiously silent on the issue, and larger media outlets seem to be silent as well, failing to ask her if she ever referred women to Gosnell, for example.
Actor and stand-up comic Jay Mohr used the tragic bombing of the Boston Marathon to attack gun rights. The actor, probably best known for his role as a sleazy sports agent in Jerry Maguire, used the bombing as an excuse to attack guns, as he demanded: "2nd amendment must go."
In later tweets he went on to slam his critics as people with gun "fetishes." The following are just some off Mohr's April 15 tweets: (LANGUAGE WARNING)
In an exclusive interview with President Obama aired on Tuesday's NBC Today, co-host Savannah Guthrie began the exchange by fretting over gun legislation in Congress "hanging by a thread" and scolding the President for not pushing for gun restrictions sooner: "You are asking Democrats in conservative states to take a tough vote politically, something you, yourself, did not do. You didn't run on this in 2008 or 2012, not after Tucson, not after Aurora."
Later in the discussion, Guthrie helped to portray Obama's budget plan as a centrist compromise that riled both Republicans and Democrats: "[Republicans] say it's not enough and they say it's not enough to make a deal....you've got Democrats a little mad at you, too, saying you've cut Social Security and Medicare and now this is going to come back and haunt them in their races." The President touted: "It does not give Republicans everything they want, frankly it doesn't reflect everything that I would like to see."
ABC has aggressively pushed Barack Obama's gun control scheme in recent weeks. But on Sunday and Monday, the network resorted to playing clips of a rival channel's comedy show, Saturday Night Live. Sunday's World News and Monday's Good Morning America both touted Democratic talking points, lamenting how hard it is to get such legislation passed. On Monday morning, Jon Karl hyped, "Congress is just not eager to enact new gun laws. A fact lampooned on Saturday Night Live."
He then featured a clip of comedian Jay Pharoah impersonating Obama. Pharoah mocked, "This week, the Senate voted 68-31 to begin debating the idea of discussing gun control. Let me say that again. They have agreed to think about talking about gun control." On Sunday's World News, reporter Rena Ninan didn't even bother coming up with much of a justification. She simply introduced, "SaturdayNight Live, overnight."
NBC synergy in action. Saturday Night Live opens with a skit hitting President Barack Obama from the left for celebrating picayune progress on gun control and, the next morning, Meet the Press host David Gregory uses that clip to illustrate his liberal point about how the “problem” is insufficient action on gun control.
After playing a bit of that comedy video, in which an “Obama” impersonator trumpets “I am so excited to announce that this week the Senate voted 68-31 to begin debating the idea of discussing gun control,” Gregory fretted: “Isn’t that really the problem? Despite all the emotion, despite the push, despite the public opinion polls, not a lot is about to be accomplished here.”
Phoenix physician and radio host Mike Newcomb was allowed to host the leftist Thom Hartmann radio show on Thursday. He and his sidekick Eric Reinert were discussing the Senate vote allowing debate on the Toomey-Manchin compromise, which they mentioned the National Rifle Association -- the nation's oldest civil rights organization -- opposes.
They read from a statement signed by 33 family members of Newtown victims expressing anger at Republican senators who've promised to filibuster gun-control bills. Then they discussed how liberals "gotta get rid of the NRA."
The Hollywood Reporter's Erin Carlson reported that parent-activists in Newtown, Connecticut were unhappy that the Fox show "Glee" featured a school-shooting incident on Thursday night's episode.
Andrew Paley, whose two sons survived the Sandy Hook massacre, slammed the show on Facebook for going forward with the shooting story line while the community is still healing from the events of Dec. 14.
Do you oppose President Obama's gun control proposals? Well then, you must not be against gun violence. So suggested a guest this morning on the new MSNBC show, Up With Steve Kornacki.
Leah Gunn Barrett [insert wisecrack on middle name here], of "New Yorkers Against Gun Violence," was trying to explain away why Second Amendment advocates do so well politically. According to her, gun "enthusiasts" are single-issue voters with good grassroots organization. In contrast, "people who are against gun violence" aren't as well organized. View the video after the jump.
On Thursday's The Last Word with Lawrence O'Donnell, host O'Donnell ranted against Republicans who have argued that the proposed new gun laws would not have prevented recent high-profile shootings, as the MSNBC host referred to such talk as "the worst, most vicious lie being told by Republicans."
Referring to nine-year-old shooting victim Christina Taylor Green, who died in the Tucson, Arizona, mass shooting that targeted former Rep. Gabby Giffords, O'Donnell absurdly claimed that she "was safe" when magazine clips of more than 10 rounds used to be illegal, and asserted that "cowardly lawmakers' indifference to her right to life" was the reason she was killed. O'Donnell:
We’re living through an important moment in U.S. political history, and thankfully we have ABC’s chief White House correspondent Jonathan Karl to tell us just how momentous it is. Karl appeared as a guest on Charlie Rose’s PBS show Thursday night to chat about gun control and the president’s budget, among other things. The veteran ABC reporter lamented the fact that neither Republicans nor Democrats on Capitol Hill appreciated President Obama’s budget very much:
"I mean, the Republicans didn't give him really any credit at all. And then you have on his liberal flank people like Barry Sanders [sic] saying this is outrageous that the president is, in the words of some progressives, stealing money from seniors, stealing deserved benefits. So it's hard to find somebody up on Capitol Hill that was truly ready to give the president credit. And to praise his budget." [Video below. MP3 audio here.]
The media's censoring of the Kermit Gosnell murder trial is appalling. But why, exactly, are reporters failing to cover the Philadelphia abortionist's trial? Mollie Hemingway of the Patheos blog Get Religion thought she'd ask Washington Post staff writer Sarah Kliff, who responded via Twitter that she isn’t writing about it because she “cover[s] policy for the Washington Post, not local crime."
That, of course, is a patently ludicrous excuse. In an April 12 blog post, Hemingway aptly noted that local crimes are often used to give context to a larger issue in public policy. The Trayvon Martin shooting sparked a debate about Stand Your Ground Laws. The murder of Matthew Shepard launched a debate around hate crimes, and awareness of bigotry against gays. And as for the most recent case of a local crime story gone national, a day after the Newtown shooting, Kliff penned a piece asking, “What would ‘meaningful action’ on gun control look like?” The bottom line is that the Gosnell trial illustrates just how poorly regulated many inner-city abortion clinics are and how that lack of regulation can allow horror stories like Gosnell to happen.
During a segment on Friday's NBC Today that suggested a "turning point for gun laws," co-host Matt Lauer declared: "Big story in Washington this morning, the Senate agreeing to move forward with the first major gun control legislation in decades, this after more Republicans than expected agreed to debate a proposal on new federal background checks for gun purchases."
Meet the Press moderator David Gregory proclaimed: "...the feeling among Republicans was, 'Don't stop the debate. That would be political suicide for Republicans to not let the debate go forward.'"
"CNN and MSNBC, as we can see with the gun control debate are openly promoting not just gun control but the president's gun control agenda and calling it news," NewsBusters publisher Brent Bozell argued on the April 11 edition of Hannity, where he appeared for the popular weekly Media Mash segment. Reacting to the fact that MSNBC's Morning Joe program gave Vice President Biden an entire three-hour program yesterday to push for more gun control, Bozell added that the bias is so endemic that it must be addressed at the corporate level of media ownership, as the so-called news networks are pushing a political agenda, not relaying information and giving time for both sides of the debate.
For the benefit of his viewers at home, Fox News host Sean Hannity played clips of Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.V.) and Vice President Joe Biden praising CNN and MSNBC respectively for their biased coverage. "We appreciate your support too, this is very, very important," Manchin told the anchors of Thursday's edition of CNN's Starting Point. Mr. Vice President, thank you so much," faux conservative Joe Scarborough told the vice president as he wrapped up the April 11 Morning Joe, thanking him for a "great discussion." "No, thank you!" Biden shot back. "No, no, no, no, no. You have changed the debate in America.... The two guys that deserve, if anything gets done [on gun control] - an award here are you and Michael Bloomberg." [watch the video below]
CNN's pro-gun control bias is so bad, Democratic Senator Joe Manchin (W.Va.) thanked them for their "support" of his gun bill on Thursday's Starting Point. This came after CNN's press release begged Congress to expand background checks.
"We appreciate your support, too. This is very, very important," Manchin told CNN after co-host John Berman noted the Senator's "compromise deal" he had been working on.
Hardball's Chris Matthews on Thursday again smeared pro-Second Amendment Senators, this time comparing them to "Jim Crow" racists. While talking about GOP politicians who threatened to filibuster the current gun control bill, Matthews spewed, "But you remember when they fought in the early '60s about, about Jim Crow and getting rid of all those racial things down south where it says white only at the gas station, men's room and everything?"
Talking to journalist Chuck Todd, Matthews continued, "And that was the old states of the confederacy were against any of those changes. But now is there that large a body of Republicans out there that are truly being represented by the don't-even-vote crowd?" Apparently, Matthews has again forgotten that it was the Democratic Party that represented the segregationist south. [UPDATED with video below. MP3 audio here.]
CNN has resorted to airing a 2011 al Qaeda video highlighting America's lax gun laws as a legitimate critique of the current laws.
"You know who's watching this whole gun debate playing out in America? Al Qaeda. Al Qaeda already thinks America's gun control system is weak and American al Qaeda spokesman says it is so easy to get guns in America that wannabe terrorists should take advantage of it," warned anchor Brooke Baldwin. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
On Thursday's NBC Today, political director Chuck Todd urged Republicans to back gun restrictions or risk alienation from female voters: "Look at the massive gender gap....65% of women want stricter gun laws, 44% of men. So if you make the argument to Republicans...if you want to continue to have problems with women voters, don't deal with this gun issue. If you want to start trying to win over suburban women, maybe you need to tackle it." [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
In a 23-paragraph story -- headlined "States move to restrict gun magazines" in the print edition -- stacked heavily in favor of gun control advocates, the Washington Post's Sari Horwitz insulted her readers intelligence with sloppy reporting and baseless claims.
"Experts say limiting size of devices could reduce deaths in mass shootings," insisted the subheadline. But it turns out Horwitz only quoted one such "expert," David Chipman, who happened to be a "senior policy adviser for Mayors Against Illegal Guns." Two paragraphs later, Horwitz noted that "gun rights advocates" like Lawrence Keane of the National Shooting Sports Foundation dismiss that notion as "speculative at best." So what makes Chipman an expert while the senior vice president of a shooting sports trade group is not, other, that is, than the liberal journalist's biases on gun control?
World News reporter David Muir on Wednesday aggressively pushed gun control with a recycled, one-sided report on the ease of buying weapons. Muir also failed to identify Omar Samaha, featured prominently in the segment, as the grassroots coordinator for Coalition to Stop Gun Violence. [Video below. MP3 audio here.]
Muir replayed a four-year-old segment of Samaha going to a gun show to purchase weapons from private sellers. The journalist labeled the young man as someone who lost his sister at the Virginia Tech massacre. The correspondent didn't explain, however, that Samaha is employed professionally with a gun control organization and has worked with Michael Bloomberg to restrict the Second Amendment. Muir has a history of misleading viewers. On April 6, 2009, he promoted another gun control activist without identifying his political stance or affiliation.
MSNBC's Joe Scarborough got an endorsement Thursday that he might live to regret.
In an exclusive Morning Joe interview with Joe Biden, the Vice President told Scarborough, "The two guys that deserve - if anything gets done [on gun control] - an award here are you and Michael Bloomberg" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
CNN's Piers Morgan used the stabbing of 14 people at Lone Star College on Tuesday to argue that gun laws prevented what could have been a massacre.
On Tuesday's Piers Morgan Live, Morgan hosted two students from the college who said they could have prevented the stabbing had they been allowed to carry guns; he replied that that would create "total Wild West madness" and argued that gun laws prevented the deaths of the students injured by stabbing: [Video below the break. Audio here.]
On the eve of a proposed deal on a limited expansion of background checks for guy buyers, Tuesday's NBC Nightly News went after Republicans for opposing gun restrictions, with Capitol Hill correspondent Kelly O'Donnell proclaiming: "In a provocative move, more than a dozen Republicans are threatening to use Senate rules to block a vote on new gun restrictions....Sensing public disdain, a rift emerged among Republicans. A dozen now saying publicly they would not support a filibuster..." [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
In her report, O'Donnell cast GOP senators as the villains opposite family members of Newtown shooting victims: "The families here today were looking lawmakers in the eye with a direct appeal. A movement and a deeply personal cause, one Senate office at a time." O'Donnell declared that the possible Republican filibuster of new laws was "adding an extra urgency to the Newtown families' visit."
On Tuesday's Piers Morgan Live, CNN's Christiane Amanpour claimed that states with strict gun laws have "lower gun crime" and argued for more gun control. By citing "states" she ignored cities like Chicago, which has strict gun laws along with alarming homicide numbers.
"The fact of the matter is that in states inside the United States where there are tougher gun laws, there is lower gun crime," Amanpour stated. She continued, referencing other countries: "in these other countries which have had their own massacres which then took these measures, there has been very little, if not any, gun crime." [Video below the break. Audio here.]
The journalists at Good Morning America on Wednesday could barely contain themselves, hailing the compromise over gun control legislation as a "major," "big, significant breakthrough." Guest host Elizabeth Vargas marveled, "Boy, is that big news."
Yet, the reporters on NBC offered less effusive coverage. Today's Kristen Welker conceded, "Democrats had been hoping for background checks to be universal. They didn't get that. This is going to be a pared down, watered down version of background checks." She asserted, "The deal is far less than the President was hoping for." In contrast, ABC's Jon Karl promoted, "And it is a big, significant breakthrough. It doesn't get you all the way there, but it gets you a long way there." Former Democratic operative turned journalist George Stephanopoulos trumpeted, "Looks like a major breakthrough."