In an interview with Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele on Tuesday's CBS Early Show, co-host Maggie Rodriguez touted the signing of ObamaCare into law: "the Senate bill...becomes law today. You're going to be stuck with a bill you don't like." She then wondered: "What if the catastrophic scenario that you've been warning about doesn't play out?"
Rodriguez referred to an interview that her fellow co-host Harry Smith had just concluded with White House advisor David Axelrod and asked: "What if, as David Axelrod suggests, now that it's a reality and people start to see the benefits, they actually like it?" Steele replied: "David Axelrod didn't talk about the $506 billion that's being taken out of Medicare....He didn't talk about the $500 billion in new taxes that are going to be imposed on those small businesses....there's a lot in this bill that have yet to be revealed to the American people. And when it's further revealed, it'll be less – less liked."
After Steele's response, Rodriguez felt the need to incredulously repeat: "If it turns out to be the catastrophe that you are predicting." She then criticized the RNC for being too "extreme" in its opposition: "I looked on the RNC website this morning. I have to say, I was surprised by what I saw. The home page shows a big photograph of Nancy Pelosi and in huge block letters it says 'Fire Pelosi' and she is against a backdrop of flames....Isn't this a little bit extreme?...What can you accomplish with this?" A still shot of the RNC website appeared on screen (see picture below). Rodriguez failed to point that in the latest CBS News poll, Nancy Pelosi only has an 11% approval rating.
Steele dismissed Rodriguez's characterization: "Actually, I tamed it down. You know, the reality of it is I don't know why you're surprised. Nancy Pelosi is the architect of the demise, in my view, of one-sixth of our economy. She should be fired for her failure to serve the interests of the American people."
Good Morning America co-host Robin Roberts on Tuesday pressed Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty to account for the "tone" of conservatives and Republicans following the passage of health care legislation. Speaking of protests in Washington over the weekend, she complained, "And some things that didn't help, and I don't know if you agree or not, the tone, the tone that it took."
Guest co-host Bill Weir uttered similar disapproval of the "vitriol." He talked to White House senior advisor David Axelrod and worried, "How do you regard this white-hot anger we heard yesterday?" Weir also opined that some Americans are "violently opposed" to the legislation.
It seems that, in the wake of the liberal celebrations over the passage of the Senate ObamaCare bill, their former vociferous, opposition to it has been tossed down the memory hole. And woe betide anyone who points out how much they used to hate it. Such was the case of The New Republic senior editor Jonathan Chait who castigates your humble correspondent in this article for pointing out this inconvenient fact:
P.J. Gladnick at Newsbusters accuses yours truly of hypocrisy:
Remember all that hype from the liberals until last night about how horrible the Senate ObamaCare was? Yes, they admitted it was a terrible piece of legislation but it was necessary for the House of Representatives to pass it in order for the Senate to somehow improve it via reconciliation. Well, toss that all out the window. Suddenly, sans any change in that formerly detested bill, it has suddenly become a "brilliant" piece of legislation as you can see in this gushing ode to the current unchanged ObamaCare bill by Jonathan Chait of the New Republic...
A "masterfully crafted piece of legislation?" If so, why even bother to try to improve this brilliance via reconciliation in the Senate? Of course, Chait's article makes absolutely no reference to reconciliation. That pretense seems to have been dropped. It will be interesting to see how many other liberals suddenly discover the "brilliance" of what was previously considered a lousy Senate ObamaCare bill and drop their former urgency over the necessity for improvement via reconciliation. For Jonathan Chait all that matters now is that the once hated Senate ObamaCare bill has passed despite the consequences to come.
NBC's Lester Holt, substitute hosting for Matt Lauer on Tuesday's Today show, questioned Michael Steele about the GOP taking a risk in its opposition to Obamacare as he explained a lot Americans have looked at the bill and found things they liked and pressed the RNC chairman: "Do you want to be in a position of taking something away?" For his part Steele fired back: "I disagree with your premise that a lot of Americans have now taken a look at the bill. Taken a look at what bill? They're still writing the thing." [audio available here]
LESTER HOLT: The fact of the matter is while Americans are divided on this, a lot of them have now looked at the paper, looked at some of the things in the bill and said, "Hey that applies to my situation, I'll take it." By now trying to repeal it, are Republicans in the position of trying to take something away and isn't it a lot harder than opposing a bill in the first place?
The VAT is a consumption tax that is placed on a product whenever value is added at a stage of production and at final sale. For example, as Investopedia.com explains, "When a television is built by a company in Europe the manufacturer is charged a VAT on all of the supplies they purchase for producing the television. Once the television reaches the shelf, the consumer who purchases it must pay the VAT that applies to him or her."
Now that health care reform has actually been passed by Congress, the options of stopping it are growing more and more limited. According to syndicated columnist Charles Krauthammer, this expensive unfunded liability won't likely be undone in the Supreme Court.
Appearing on Monday’s Countdown show, MSNBC analyst Howard Fineman – also of Newsweek – dismissed Republican promises of working to repeal ObamaCare, suggesting that because it would be nearly impossible to have the numbers in Congress to do so after the next election, Republicans are merely using the issue as a fundraising and political ploy: "This isn`t about mathematics, Keith, it`s about theology – and fundraising, as you pointed out. ... But the Republicans aren`t interested in fixing anything. They`re interested in holding out this kind of almost anti-messianic hope that they`re somehow going to be able to repeal the thing."
Fineman also argued that because the ObamaCare bill does not include either the government-run "public option" or a single-payer system, that in reality it is a "preservation and enhancement, if you will, of the existing system."
As he listed factors that helped Democrats successfully pass ObamaCare, Fineman at one point seemed to make Olbermann a little nervous that some would tie the "birther" conspiracy theory in with his contention that President Obama "comes from a country of long-distance runners and was one," as he credited Obama with "persistence."
Looking at the state of both parties after President Obama’s health bill win in the House, ABC’s Terry Moran elevated the view of “prominent conservative” David Frum, author a year ago of Newsweek’s “Why Rush is Wrong” cover story, who blamed Rush Limbaugh and Fox News for what he’s dubbed the GOP’s “Waterloo.” On Nightline, Moran contended “anger, stoking it, expressing it, riding it...was the Republican strategy to defeat health care. And over the weekend all that anger got ugly, as some Democratic Members of Congress were called vile, racial and anti-gay slurs.”
But, he warned, “in the wake of the Democrats’ victory, some Republicans are not sure all that anger makes good politics,” as if Limbaugh and other conservative leaders advocated yelling the “slurs.” Moran relayed how “Frum says the real leadership of the Republican Party during the course of the health care battle was not to be found in the halls of Congress, but on the air waves” since “it was talk radio and Fox News, Frum argues, that drove the GOP strategy.” Moran paraphrased Frum’s take:
It sounds like you're saying that the Glenn Becks, Rush Limbaughs, hijacked the Republican Party and drove it to a defeat?
ABC anchor Diane Sawyer shared the glow of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's health policy victory, showing her, in an “ABC News exclusive” interview, a Washington Post with the headline of “Democrats Claim Health Votes” as she wondered: “What do you think your dad and your mom would have said about this moment?” Sawyer followed up: “Did your dad have a phrase, a sentence that meant the most to you when he'd say it to you, or your mom?” Pelosi's answer, “make sure you have the votes,” cracked up Sawyer, who chuckled: “No so sentimental.”
Sawyer framed her sit-down by trumpeting Pelosi's power, teasing at the top of World News: “Our exclusive interview with the woman now called the most powerful Speaker in one hundred years.”
Setting up the interview excerpts, Sawyer heralded how “she's said to have done it with an epic blend of persuasion, muscle,” describing Pelosi as the “indefatigable,, unwavering almost 70-year-old Speaker, mother of five, grandmother of seven.” After fretting about how “there was such vitriol around the Capitol and also inside the room last night,” Sawyer told Pelosi: “The Economist said that you are arguably the most powerful woman in American history. A Brown university professor has said you are certainly the most powerful Speaker in one hundred years.”
MSNBC's David Shuster and liberal Professor Michael Eric Dyson on Monday took turns smearing Rush Limbaugh. Discussing conservative reaction to the passage of the health care bill, Shuster berated, "But, nobody on the right produced as much controversial venom this afternoon as Rush Limbaugh."
Shuster also linked the radio host to isolated outbursts over the weekend during protests in Washington. Talking to guest Michelle Bernard, he connected, "Is it possible, Michelle, to draw a link between Rush Limbaugh and when he talks, in a clip we didn't play, but how supporters should be wiped out?" He asserted, "That sort of venomous language and you create this picture- Rush Limbaugh creates this picture of fascism and Nazism on the march."
Monday's American Morning on CNN slanted toward guests who supported ObamaCare versus opponents, by a margin of six to two. The program also devoted three segments specifically to interviewing supporters, versus only one to opponents.
Correspondent John Zarella interviewed customers at Lester's Diner in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, asking them for their take on health care "reform." During a segment 43 minutes into the 6 am Eastern hour, Zarella questioned two supporters of ObamaCare. Over an hour later, the CNN correspondent found two who objected to the proposed legislation, thereby covering both sides of the debate.
Anchor John Roberts, on the other hand, shifted the balance to the left by interviewing two supporters of ObamaCare who have an autistic child during a segment 13 minutes into the 7 am Eastern hour. Roberts sympathetically introduced Esther and Paul Hawkins: "Six months after President Obama signs the health care reform bill into law, insurance companies will not be allowed to deny coverage for kids because of preexisting medical conditions. The bill widens that measure to the rest of us by the year 2014. Now, critics say that's only going to add to the growing cost of delivering health care, but for some parents with uninsured kids, it's an awfully big relief."
After weeks of featuring mostly Democratic guests arguing for health care legislation, Good Morning America's George Stephanopoulos on Monday conducted a hectoring interview with Republican John McCain. The former Democratic operative turned journalist's first question revolved around the Kennedys: "...You were good friends with Senator Ted Kennedy. What would you say to him this morning?"
After McCain mentioned some ideas that Republicans could do better and, at the same time, advocated for overturning the health care bill, Stephanopoulos complained, "But, Senator, if you repeal the bill, those reforms that you just mentioned will be repealed as well. Won't they?"
At the top of Monday's CBS Early Show, co-host Harry Smith proclaimed the passage of ObamaCare: "A major victory for President Obama as House Democrats work late into the night to pass health care reform." A headline on screen read: "Historic Victory."
Co-host Maggie Rodriguez later introduced a report on the legislation by remarking that Smith, who was pleased with his NCAA March Madness bracket picks, was "not the only one who's happy this morning. So is President Obama." She went on to declare: "We begin with Congress's historic passage of health care reform late last night." Rodriguez recited ObamaCare talking points: "Now under this law...insurance companies will not be allowed to drop your coverage if you get sick. There will be no cap on lifetime insurance benefits and you can keep your children on your health insurance through the age of 26. Also, coverage will be available for uninsured Americans with pre-existing conditions."
In the report that followed, correspondent Nancy Cordes began by describing the "sense of relief for Democrats," in the wake of the bill's passage. The on-screen headline read: "Historic Vote; Health Care Reform Passes; Heads to Obama's Desk."
Good Morning America's Robin Roberts on Monday allowed the Kennedys to take a victory lap for the passage of health care. As the co-host interviewed Patrick Kennedy, an ABC graphic announced, "Rep. Kennedy on Dad's Final Wish: Father's Life Work Was Reform."Roberts teased the segment, "And we talk to the Congressman who sees this bill's passage as the completion of his late father's legacy."
The anchor repeatedly tossed softballs to the Rhode Island representative: "Did you feel your father's presence throughout this ordeal?" Earlier in the segment, she offered this hard-hitting query: "Congressman, an emotional 24 hours for so many people. I want to just get a gauge of your feelings here this morning."
In comparison, co-host George Stephanopoulos grilled Senator John McCain on the Republican response. He demanded, "I know that Republicans want to repeal the bill. But there are also some provisions that take effect this year that you said you're for...No cancellation of policies if you get ill. Will you move to repeal those provisions as well?"
NBC's Meredith Vieira opened Monday's Today show declaring, "Good morning. It passed. Congress approves historic legislation to reform health care" and then a few seconds later noted, "Democrats are using words like 'historic' to describe the sweeping overhaul that was approved." Interesting to see the Today co-anchor acknowledge the Democratic theme and still use it, something that was done throughout the ensuing health care segments.
NBC's White House correspondent Chuck Todd repeated the theme of the day, as he observed: "Soon after the vote, President Obama, who admitted that he was putting his own presidency on the line with health care, basked in the glow of victory...Following the historic vote, the Speaker of the House had an air of satisfaction.
Todd did note the Republican side of the issue but seemed to depict them as merely sore losers who will try to "gum up" the works of the legislation:
If it walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, looks like a duck, it must be a duck - but just be prepared to have your spelling skills challenged when you reach that conclusion.
And so goes CNN's Roland Martin. On the network's March 21 special coverage of the House of Representatives passage of health care legislation, host Wolf Blitzer asked Martin, a CNN political analyst, about his views of those who call these so-called reform measures Soviet-style communism or socialism.
"That's just stuck on stupid," Martin said. "I mean to sit there on the House floor and all of a sudden you're talking about, oh, this is communism and you're sitting here and reaching - that's just dumb, OK? You know what? If Republicans truly cared about health care, why in the world didn't they do anything for eight years? So don't stand here now when the Democrats have been pushing the issue and now say, oh, no, ‘Republicans - we really care about health care,' when you had the opportunity to make changes to our system."
Remember all that hype from the liberals until last night about how horrible the Senate ObamaCare was? Yes, they admitted it was a terrible piece of legislation but it was necessary for the House of Representatives to pass it in order for the Senate to somehow improve it via reconciliation. Well, toss that all out the window. Suddenly, sans any change in that formerly detested bill, it has suddenly become a "brilliant" piece of legislation as you can see in this gushing ode to the current unchanged ObamaCare bill by Jonathan Chait of the New Republic:
Historians will see this health care bill as a masterfully crafted piece of legislation. Obama and the Democrats managed to bring together most of the stakeholders and every single Senator in their party. The new law law untangles the dysfunctionalities of the individual insurance market while fulfilling the political imperative of leaving the employer-provided system in place. Through determined advocacy, and against special interest opposition, they put into place numerous reforms to force efficiency into a wasteful system. They found hundreds of billions of dollars in payment offsets, a monumental task in itself. And they will bring economic and physical security to tens of millions of Americans who would otherwise risk seeing their lives torn apart. Health care experts for decades have bemoaned the impossibility of such reforms--the system is wasteful, but the very waste creates a powerful constituency for the status quo. Finally, the Democrats have begun to untangle the Gordian knot. It's a staggering political task and substantive achievement.
Some of the American people probably thought they were voting for hope and change when they voted for President Barack Obama on Nov. 4, 2008. But according to Rev. Al Sharpton, they were voting for socialism.
Sharpton, the founder of the National Action Network and talk radio host told Fox News on March 21, during their special coverage of the House of Representatives' passage of health care reform legislation, this victory for President Barack Obama and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi would begin "transforming" the country.
"I think that the president and Nancy Pelosi get credit," Sharpton said. "I think this began the transforming of the country the way the president had promised. This is what he ran on."
And if that transformation is socialism, then so be it, he explained. That is what the American public "overwhelmingly" voted for.
As if anti-ObamaCare protesters are unruly street gangs, ABC’s Diane Sawyer, anchoring Sunday’s World News on what she touted as “a night for the history books” and a “seismic night,” impugned the opponents as a bunch of out of control marauders, citing “protesters roaming Washington, some of them increasingly emotional, yelling slurs and epithets.”
Elevating the same day-old despicable actions of a few on which ABC also focused on Saturday’s World News, ABC on Sunday devoted a full story to the topic. David Kerley reported that, “surrounded by angry protesters at the Capitol, someone yelled the N-word at” Congressman John Lewis” and “a few steps below, Representative Emanuel Cleaver was spat on,”while “as openly gay Representative Barney Frank walked the halls, a homophobic slur.”
Kerley began with the Democrats’ exploitation of the Lewis incident. Over video of Nancy Pelosi and Steny Hoyer walking side-by-side with Lewis as they joined hands, Kerley hailed “a remarkable scene, a remarkable statement. The Speaker and Democratic leader walking hand in hand to go vote today, with Representative John Lewis, who yesterday was reminded of old battles from his civil rights days.” Over black and white video, Kerley reminded viewers of how Lewis “was beaten by police as he led protesters across the Selma, Alabama, bridge” and so “it was hard to forget the history, as Lewis made that strikingly symbolic walk today.”
Syndicated columnist Charles Krauthammer gave a very ominous prognosis of health care in the United States, assuming House Democrats have finally mustered up votes to pass particular legislation.
On a special broadcast of the Fox News Channel's "Special Report with Bret Baier" on March 21, Krauthammer announced upon passage of health care reform legislation in the House of Representatives, we will have a different country and on the road to nationalized health care.
"Nonetheless, it will be the law of the land as of tonight and we're going to be a different country," Krauthammer said. "We are on our way, there is absolutely no chance we are not going to end up with national health care."
The morning after CBS News White House reporter Mark Knoller, in a tweet, slurred anti-ObamaCare protesters with the vulgar “tea bagger” sexual terminology, Bob Schieffer began Sunday’s Face the Nation with how the health care reform debate “that's been rancorous and mean from the start turned even nastier yesterday” with protesters “shouting ‘kill the bill!’ and ‘made in the USSR”’ as they supposedly “hurled racial epithets, even at civil rights icon John Lewis of Georgia, and sexual slurs at Massachusetts Democrat Barney Frank. Other legislators said the protesters spit on them and one lawmaker said it was like a page out of a time machine.”
In what way is “kill the bill” nasty?
Though the despicable actions, if true, were committed by a handful out of thousands, Saturday’s World News also used the incidents to discredit the cause of those rallying against ObamaCare: “Protesters against the plan gathered on the streets of the capital where late today we learned words shouted turned very ugly, reports of racial and homophobic slurs, one protester actually spitting on a Congressman,” ABC anchor David Muir announced, repeating: “Late word from Washington tonight about just how ugly the crowds gathered outside the Longworth office building have become.”
Though by their own count “thousands” of anti-ObamaCare protesters gathered outside the Capitol building on Saturday, ABC decided to smear the entire cause by stressing the despicable actions of a handful or even fewer as anchor David Muir announced in setting up the first story on Saturday’s World News: “Protesters against the plan gathered on the streets of the capital where late today we learned words shouted turned very ugly, reports of racial and homophobic slurs, one protester actually spitting on a Congressman.”
Following the lead story on President Barack Obama’s pep talk to House Democrats, and before Jonathan Karl’s count on where the vote stands (he put it at 212 yes versus 214 no), Muir went to:
Late word from Washington tonight about just how ugly the crowds gathered outside the Longworth office building have become. We learned that as Congressman Emanuel Cleaver of Missouri was leaving his office someone in the crowd spit on him. There are also reports of racial and homophobic slurs, one targeting Congressman John Lewis, the famous civil rights champion, and the other involving Congressman Barney Frank. You can listen in for yourself.
Is The Washington Post playing favorites with causes that inspire people to exercise their First Amendment rights and take to the streets to protest? When it comes to opposition to Democratic efforts to reform health care versus opposition to wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, it appears so.
In a March 20 Washington Post story headlined "Obama delivers plea to 'help us fix this system,'" Ben Pershing, Paul Kane and Lori Montgomery suggested House Democrats were gaining momentum in their pursuit of the 216 votes needed to pass health care reform legislation, despite "hundreds" of "tea party" protesters rallying outside the U.S. Capitol. (h/t Amanda Carpenter)
"Outside the Capitol, hundreds of 'tea party' protesters rallied against the legislation, jeering Democratic lawmakers as they passed and holding signs reading 'We'll Remember in November' and 'Revolution,' Pershing, Kane and Montgomery wrote.
In a Friday piece of presidential protection prose promulgated by the Associated Press, writer Erica Werner correctly identified a number of significant "unfulfilled commitments" relating to proposed health care legislation, and then attempted to make excuses for why they didn't happen.
Werner's work was conveniently accompanied by a heavily downplaying headline -- "Final health bill omits some of Obama's promises" -- while her rundown of the specifics in reality ended up being "all but two":
It was a bold response to skyrocketing health insurance premiums. President Barack Obama would give federal authorities the power to block unreasonable rate hikes.
Yet when Democrats unveiled the final, incarnation of their health care bill this week, the proposal was nowhere to be found.
Complete with a photo of her late parents, ABC's Jonathan Karl concluded his Friday night story on undecided Democratic House members by conveying the complaint of Pennsylvania's Kathy Dahlkemper, who contended a TV ad about how further government control of health care will lead to delays in cancer treatment as has occurred in Britain, is inappropriate because her parents recently died from cancer.
“Perhaps the most powerful personal story belongs to Pennsylvania's Kathy Dahlkemper,” Karl intoned, pointing out “her father died of leukemia in February, and her mother died just two weeks ago, and now she finds herself among the undecided Democrats targeted by this ad.” Viewers then saw a very brief clip of an ad from Americans for Prosperity in which a woman maintained: “If you find a lump, you could wait months for treatment and life-saving drugs can be restricted.”
Karl relayed Dahlkemper's indignation: “She says the group that made the ad is wrong, and takes it personally.” In a soundbite, the freshman representing the Northwestern area of the Keystone State squeezed between Ohio and New York, decried: “So, for these ads to come out and somehow say that I'm soft on cancer, after having just lost two parents within the last six weeks from cancer, and with having the record I have really for supporting wellness, to me, is wrong.”
MSNBC's David Shuster on Friday attacked conservatives for "targeting" an 11-year-old child who lost his mother and is now lobbying for government-run health care. The liberal anchor sneered, "Is the right sinking to a new low? We'll let you judge for yourself." He then interviewed the young Marcelas Owens and his grandmother, for the second time in ten days.
In case viewers didn't get the slant of the segment, MSNBC's graphic reiterated, "New Low For Right? Conservative Critics Call Owens' Tale a 'Sob Story.'" As the MRC's Tim Graham noted, this story is being heavily pushed by Media Matters and other left-leaning outlets. Shuster did not talk to any conservative voices. (He only played a brief clip of Rush Limbaugh asserting that Democrats are using Owens for their own purposes.)
Democrats will be pointing to this preliminary CBO score as if it is engraved on stone tablets. Republicans will proclaim their respect for the CBO and proceed to argue that its estimates should not be taken too seriously in this instance. This may come as a surprise, but I think the Republican argument is closer to correct. To crow, as did House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, that the package is "a triumph for the American people in terms of deficit reduction" is premature at best, delusional at worst.
On Thursday's Situation Room, CNN's Wolf Blitzer engaged newly-elected Republican Scott Brown on his opposition to ObamaCare, and asked him the same question from the left twice in succession: "What's wrong with giving 30 million-plus more Americans access to health insurance?" He also later added, "What's wrong with spending money...if it's going to give access to 30 million Americans?" [audio clips available here; video clips available here]
Blitzer had the Massachusetts senator on just before the bottom of the 5 pm Eastern hour. The anchor first complimented Brown for driving over to the CNN Washington Bureau in his "nice little truck," and immediately asked his slanted question.
After the senator gave his initial answer, Blitzer, seemingly unsatisfied by the response, pressed further, and added another argument from the left: "I guess I should rephrase the question. What's wrong with spending money- the cost, if it winds up costing money, if it winds up raising taxes on multimillionaires or millionaires, or people even earning more than $250,000 a year- if it's going to give access to 30 million Americans, so they don't have to worry about getting sick- what's wrong with that?"
As conservatives rally opposition to ObamaCare in the waning hours of the health care debate, MSNBC "Morning Joe" host Joe Scarborough didn't seem to think the upcoming health care vote is such a big deal. On his show this morning, Scarborough concluded that the outcome of the health care overhaul vote will not have a significant impact on the American health care system.
“People just need to take a deep breath,” insisted Scarborough. “We’re going to be fine. Whichever way it goes, we’re going to be fine.”
Scarborough employed hyperbole to mischaracterize those who argue that ObamaCare is fiscally reckless and a step toward a single-payer health care system.
The mainstream media are carping about Bret Baier's "contentious" interview when in fact "he did nothing unlike what Tim Russert did in all the years that Tim Russert interviewed Republican presidents," argued Media Research Center President and NewsBusters Publisher Brent Bozell on today's "Fox & Friends." [MP3 audio available here; WMV format video available here]
Just as the late "Meet the Press" host would push interview subjects to reconcile contradictory positions, Baier asked the same of President Obama, who "showed up [to the Baier interview] prepared to give a speech with his talking points, which is what he always does and always gets away with" when interviewed by other journalists, Bozell noted.
Later in the interview, former Bush White House press secretary Dana Perino noted that Obama currently has a 46 percent approval rating and asked Bozell what the poll numbers would look like if the media were actually tougher on Obama.
"If the press were, not tough on Obama [but] fair, fair with this president... I think among other things, health care would be dead. This whole charade would be dead," Bozell concluded.
On Friday's CBS Early Show, co-host Maggie Rodriguez proclaimed: "After more than a year of debate, Democrats say they're on the verge of passing historic health care legislation." And touted the massive legislation as fiscally responsible: "The government says the final version of the bill will cost $940 billion over ten years, but will reduce the projected budget deficit by $138 billion."
In a report that followed, correspondent Nancy Cordes gave a fully positive description of the legislation: "The final bill would extend coverage to 32 million Americans who are currently uninsured. It would close the gap in Medicare prescription drug coverage for seniors by the year 2020 and it would penalize businesses with more than 50 workers if they don't offer insurance."
After Cordes's report, Rodriguez spoke with House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, who praised CBS's adherence to the Democratic Party line: "Maggie, what I think is that we have seen yesterday very important information from the Congressional Budget Office, which as you indicate and Nancy indicated, shows that we are doing exactly what we said we would do."