Katie Couric's boosterism of "moderate Republican" Sen. Lisa Murkowski (Alaska) and NPR's cheap shot at former President George W. Bush's recovery from alcoholism were just two of the "Media Mash" topics NewsBusters publisher Brent Bozell and Fox News host Sean Hannity addressed on the November 20 edition of "Hannity."
"When will you ever hear the word 'liberal' attached to a Republican?" Bozell asked, noting that Murkowski is in fact a liberal Republican.
"In eight years, she was on [CBS] one time. In the last week, she's been on there twice," the Media Research Center president noted after viewing a clip of CBS "Evening News" Katie Couric's November 15 interview with the Alaska senator.
[Video of the full "Media Mash" segment is available after the page break]
On Thursday's Parker-Spitzer, CNN's Kathleen Parker bizarrely and inaccurately claimed that Alexander Hamilton came to the United States illegally and drafted the Constitution: "Let's remember...a lot of Americans did come through the back door such as Alexander Hamilton.He got off the boat from the West Indies, and all he did was write the Constitution and become the first Secretary of the Treasury."
Parker raised this false history during a discussion at the end of the 8 pm Eastern hour about Pedro Ramirez, Fresno State University's student body president, who was outed as an illegal immigrant by a student newspaper. After playing clips from Ramirez and his opponent during the student election, who is also the president of the Fresno State College Republicans, the CNN host displayed sympathy for the college student: "This is kind of a classic though, isn't it, really? I mean, you've the college Republican versus the illegal immigrant, and it's kind of a classic clash, you know, that corresponds to this immigration debate we're having in this country. And clearly, when you put a human face on the illegal immigrant, it's a different story. I mean, nobody wants to punish this young 22-year-old."
On Wednesday's Joy Behar Show on HLN, the host asked about parents who are "overpopulating" the world, and guest Helen Fisher, a Rutgers University professor, compared having a large family to littering, "as if we've got too many people on this planet to begin with." Fisher also bizarrely stated that "for billions of years, we [humans] ended up having one or two children per woman."
Host Joy Behar devoted the last two segments of her 9 pm Eastern hour program to how women are trending away from having children. Besides Fisher, she brought on author Rachel Shukert and Laura Scott, who manages the "Childless By Choice Project" blog. Near the middle of the second segment, the host blurred the line between typical large families, most of whom have children by natural means, and celebrities such as the "Octo-Mom" and Kate Gosselin and her family. This is where Fisher made her extreme leftist remark:
BEHAR: What about these people who are overpopulating- the Gosselins, the octo-moms- these people who have been vitro with hundreds of things in there- you know what I mean? What's up with that?
On Tuesday's Newsroom, CNN's Ali Velshi continued his network's promotion of homosexual "marriage" with an interview of two men who conducted what they called an "e-marriage." The two used Skype to have an officiant in Washington, DC, where same-sex "marriage" is legal, remotely perform their ceremony, which took place in Texas.
Velshi introduced the "fascinating story" of Mark and Dante Walkup and described "e-marriage" as "not just the idea that you get married using the Internet- the idea that a gay couple can get married using the Internet in a state that doesn't allow gay marriage....They got married via Skype, and they got married via Skype while they were in Dallas by somebody officiating who was somewhere else."
The CNN anchor tossed softball questions at the two homosexuals throughout the interview, only asking them to "explain...how this all transpired" and how they went about performing their "e-marriage." Towards the end of the segment, Velshi brought on defense attorney Ann Fitz, who stated that "this is absolutely a legal marriage under the laws of Washington, DC, and the fact that they have the ceremony itself in Texas does nothing to negate the validity of it." He also complimented his two guests for their "very innovative way of doing things."
CNN, whose new ad claims that they "keep them all honest, without playing favorites," actually played favorites on Monday's Parker-Spitzer. Hosts Kathleen Parker and Eliot Spitzer failed to give ideological labels to their liberal guests, while clearly identifying Tim Phillips as being president of "Americans for Prosperity, a right-wing group" and labeling Bjorn Lomborg a "controversial author."
Parker and Spitzer's first guest was liberal Congressman Anthony Weiner, who appeared two minutes into the 8 pm Eastern hour. The former liberal governor introduced Weiner as merely a "Democratic representative from New York." The American Conservative Union gave the congressman a zero rating in 2008 and 2009, with a lifetime rating of 5.14. The left-of-center Americans for Democratic Action named Weiner one of their "ADA Heroes" in the House in 2009. Clearly, the New York politician is a liberal, but neither host identified him as such.
MSNBC's Chris Matthews is a devout liberal, including on contentious social issues like abortion and homosexuality. But on the front page of Tuesday's Washington Post, religion reporter Michelle Boorstein began a story on Archbishop Donald Wuerl's elevation to Cardinal at the Vatican like this:
The archbishop's two brothers will be there. So will a rabbi he knows from Pittsburgh, the D.C. barber who cuts his hair and the fast-talking (and devoutly Catholic) television commentator Chris Matthews.
Do "devout" Catholics lecture their bishops that they should get their churchy noses out of our legislating? Boorstein apparently missed Matthews lecturing the Bishop of Providence, Thomas Tobin, in defense of Rep. Patrick Kennedy's pro-abortion politics on "Hardball" last November.
A major news story this weekend here in the D.C. area has been the federal bribery probe that resulted in the Friday afternoon arrests of outgoing Prince George's County [Md.] Executive Jack Johnson (D) and his wife Leslie -- also a registered Democrat -- who was elected two weeks ago to a County Council seat.
At the time federal officials told the media that more arrests were forthcoming, and sure enough, this morning three Prince George's County police officers were arrested as part of the Johnson case.
Yet in their November 15 story on the officers' arrests on the Breaking News Blog, Washington Post staffers Mary Pat Flaherty and Matt Zapotsky failed to note Jack Johnson's party affiliation, despite the fact that Johnson's party ID is hardly a state secret in the heavily Democratic county and the fact that Post staffers Rosalind Helderman, Hamil Harris and Ashley Halsey III noted Johnson's Democratic party affiliation in the fourth paragraph of their Metro section front-pager this morning.
Roland Martin brought his full-blown Palin Derangement Syndrome to Friday's Anderson Cooper 360, labeling the former Alaska governor "the Kim Kardashian of politics." Martin continued that Palin is "making a ton of money. We're trying to figure out why. It's the same as Kim Kardashian and Paris Hilton....She quit her job because she wanted to go out and be a celebrity."
The CNN contributor actually first tried out his questionable label of the Tea Party favorite on his Twitter account. At 5:12 pm on November 9, Martin posted the following Tweet: "Palin slammed then-Sen. Obama as a celebrity in 2008 campaign, and she's more of a celebrity because she doesn't hold office." Mind you, at that time, Palin was Alaska's governor and the Republican vice presidential candidate, but the liberal continued by complaining in a second Tweet that "the media goes ga ga over whatever she says. Palin is often wrong. She's a former governor who quit her job rather than tough it out." During his third Tweet, Martin added, "She holds no position; wants no accountability; and wants to sling arrows and then gets angry when called on the carpet 4 her nonsense." The CNN personality completed his rant by comparing the Republican to the curvy celebrity most infamous for making a pornographic video: "At the end of the day, Sarah Palin is the Kim Kardashian of Politics. She's a celebrity with no real purpose other than picking up a check."
CNN personality Soledad O'Brien revealed in her new book that liberal activist Jesse Jackson put her down for her skin color during a private meeting in 2007. During the meeting, Jackson complained to O'Brien, whose mother is a black woman from Cuba, that there weren't any black anchors on CNN. When she pointed out that she was the anchor of American Morning, the activist replied, "You don't count."
O'Brien, who is now a special correspondent for CNN, recounted the 2007 incident in "The Next Big Story," which CNN.com excerpted on November 3. Just before her meeting with Jackson, the journalist had obtained "exclusive access to Martin Luther King, Jr.'s papers," as the lead-in for the excerpt underlined. Soon after this, as O'Brien recalled, "Jackson calls with an invitation to meet and talk." The two met at a restaurant "on the first floor of a famous hotel" and in the course of their conversation, the subject of the racial makeup of her network came up:
On Thursday's CBS Early Show, news reader Erica Hill used loaded liberal terms to describe a Texas pro-life event that Sarah Palin attended on Wednesday: "Palin shared the stage in an anti-abortion rights rally with Texas Governor Rick Perry."
Hill touted how despite making no announcement to make a 2012 presidential run, Palin "was looking an awful lot like a candidate," adding that the appearance with Governor Perry represented "a dream ticket for some tea party supporters." However, after playing a brief clip of Palin, Hill noted how "A just-released Associated Press poll finds of all the potential 2012 Republican presidential candidates, Sarah Palin is the most polarizing."
CNN, a network known for its regular liberal bias, touted its supposed objectivity versus its competitors in a new ad which premiered on Tuesday evening. The ad graphically associated Fox News with the Republican elephant and MSNBC with the Democratic donkey, and claimed, "If you want to keep them all honest, without playing favorites, the choice is clear: CNN, the worldwide leader in news."
Yahoo! News's Michael Calderone, in his Wednesday article on the new ad, quoted from CNN political director Sam Feist, who claimed that their ad "simply states the obvious: We're the one cable news channel that doesn't advocate for one political party or the other." Calderone continued that "CNN's nonpartisan anchors have struggled against their more opinionated counterparts. Campbell Brown acknowledged her 8 p.m. show's low ratings against Fox News' Bill O'Reilly and MSNBC's Keith Olbermann in her May announcement that she was leaving the network."
Kicking off the panel discussion segment of last night's "Special Report," Fox News anchor Bret Baier aired a clip of Democratic Sens. Kent Conrad (N.D.) and Evan Bayh (Ind.) warning about the need to reform entitlement spending in order to preserve America's long-term financial solvency.
Baier then contrasted the frankness of the admission from the "two moderate Democrats" with the scary campaign rhetoric weeks earlier from liberal Democrats about Republicans and their ideas -- real or imagined -- to rein in entitlement spending.
CNN's Kathleen Parker and Eliot Spitzer endorsed Matt Taibbi's bashing of conservatives on their Monday program. Spitzer marveled over the Rolling Stone editor's "brilliant" label of the Tea Party as "15 million pissed-off white people sent chasing after Mexicans on Medicaid." This was the second straight evening that the network brought on an anti-conservative author to promote their latest work.
The two hosts devoted 12 straight and uninterrupted minutes during the first half of the 8 pm Eastern hour to their interview of Taibbi. Parker mentioned Taibbi's new book, "Griftopia: Bubble Machines, Vampire Squids and a Long Con that is Breaking America," in her introduction of the author and labeled it "a scathing and often hilarious account of the financial crisis...it's hard to make the financial crisis funny, but you did that successfully." She continue by quoting one of the writer's attacks on Sarah Palin: "I want to read you a description that you wrote of Sarah Palin. You called her a 'narcissistic money-grubbing hack.'"
After laughing at this label, the pseudo-conservative writer sought her guest's take on Palin: "She's got the Republican establishment scared to death, so there must be something more to Sarah than just that, huh?" Taibbi replied with some guarded praise of the former Alaska governor, along with the Tea Party movement:
CNN's Don Lemon tossed softballs at leftist writer Tim Wise on Sunday's Newsroom, mostly reading back excerpts from his latest column, which the anchor labeled a "withering rebuke of...the 'white right.'" Lemon even twice emphasized how Wise has apparently received death threats over the column, where he slammed "conservative old white people [who] have pretty much always been the bad guys."
The CNN anchor interviewed Wise for nearly eight minutes during a segment 10 minutes into the 7 pm Eastern hour. Lemon began with "withering rebuke" label and continued that the author "begins with a disclaimer that he is not referring to all white people, and that his essay is not anti-white. He says it is addressed to- quote, 'The white community that is right-wing.'" He then turned to his guest and seemed to compliment him before asking his first question: "I was actually- I have to be honest- a little bit stunned when I read this because your language is unusually rough and raw. We know that you tell it like it is. You called the election results a temper tantrum and you sound mad as hell....do you regret using any of this fiery rhetoric?"
During four days of coverage, ABC skipped the conservative perspective while reporting on Keith Olbermann's suspension. The network also used the liberal label only once. Good Morning America covered the story on Saturday and Monday and never used the word.
Friday's Nightline briefly highlighted the story. Anchor Bill Weir referred to Olbermann as MSNBC's "liberal star" and someone who has "leftward leanings." On Monday's GMA, co-host Robin Roberts pontificated on the cable host, suspended because he made political donations to three Democrats.
She fretted, "It's a move that raises questions about the changing role of journalism and whether cable news networks and others are abandoning the goal of impartial reporting." (Conservatives would probably argue that MSNBC long ago stopped caring about such things.)
On Friday's Situation Room, The Daily Beast's Howard Kurtz stated that the fundraising activities of Fox News contributors Dick Morris and Karl Rove somehow rose to a worse level than Keith Olbermann's maximum individual donations to three Democrats, which violated MSNBC's policy. Kurtz also suggested that both networks "tighten up on this stuff or just tear up the rule book."
Correspondent Mary Snow covered Olbermann's suspension during a report just before the bottom of the 6 pm Eastern hour. Snow began by noting how the anchor "has become a star power at MSNBC for voicing his liberal opinions, but Keith Olbermann is now sidelined for financially supporting three Democratic candidates. Records show he contributed $2,400 each to Kentucky Senate candidate Jack Conway, and two members of Congress from Arizona: Gabrielle Giffords and Raul Grijalva." She continued that "Congressman Grijalva was a guest on Olbermann's show October 28, the same day Olbermann donated to his campaign."
Later, after recounting how the MSNBC personality has been "a vocal critic of Fox and its parent company, News Corp, for donating $1 million to the Republican Governors Association," the CNN correspondent played her clip from Kurtz, who gave his take on the Olbermann suspension and on the Fox News contributors' fundraising:
Apparently that's what the Associated Press's Liz Sidoti (pictured at the top right at this post's home page tease) wants us to believe, as she ended her borderline bitter take on the origins of Congressional Republicans' successful electoral comeback and takeover of the House of Representatives four days ago with this sentence:
Ten months later (after Scott Brown's U.S. Senate race victory in Massachusetts -- Ed.), victorious Republicans met to plan their transition to power in the House - just as it was announced that the economy created 151,000 jobs.
As if one good jobs-added number -- even with the unemployment rate stuck at 9.6% -- proves that the economic recovery is finally in high gear. Zheesh.
It's strange how this "mandate" thing works, at least at the Associated Press.
In Ohio, Republican John Kasich defeated incumbent Democratic Governor Ted Strickland on Tuesday with a victory margin of about 2.5%, or almost 100,000 votes. Strickland is the first incumbent Buckeye State governor to lose a reelection bid since Democrat John Gilligan lost to Republican Jim Rhodes in 1974. In that race, everyone went to bed on Election Night believing that Gilligan had held on -- including Rhodes himself, who conceded the race -- only to wake up the next morning learning that late ballots had pushed Rhodes over the top by a razor-thin margin.
In Illinois, incumbent Democratic Governor Pat Quinn defeated Republican challenger Bill Brady by about 20,000 votes, a margin of about 0.5%.
Below the jump, you'll see who has permission to claim a "mandate," at least according to the Associated Press's headline writers:
Tea Party members, MSNBC’s Dylan Ratigan wants you to know that he’s just like you.
Except of course that he’s not a pyromaniacal lunatic hell-bent on destroying America.
That’s how the MSNBC anchor leaned forward, no, make that leaped, into insanity during a November 3 segment with Nicolle Wallace. The former George W. Bush staffer told Ratigan that, like him, Tea Partiers who fueled last night's electoral shakeup were furious at the direction of the country the past few years.
On Monday's Anderson Cooper 360, CNN's Anderson Cooper refreshingly admonished a Democratic state senator in Alabama for his "incendiary injection of race in the final days of this election." Cooper interrogated Hank Sanders for his robocall which predicted the return of the "cotton fields of Jim Crow" if the Democrat candidates for governor and lieutenat governor weren't elected.
The anchor led his program with a promo of his "Keeping Them Honest' segment which included his "incendiary injection of race" label of Rep. Sanders's robocall. Two minutes later, Cooper played the Democratic state senator's recording: "This is Hank Sanders, Alabama state senator, and I'm still mad as hell. I say, hell no! I ain't going back to the cotton fields of Jim Crow days. I'm going forward with Ron Sparks, Jim Folsom, and others who would do right by all of us. I hope you're mad as hell and will not go back, and you have the power to choose. I will stand until hell freezes over."
Before playing his interview with Rep. Sanders, the CNN anchor stated, "It's a pretty serious charge to make, but does he have actual evidence to back up his statements?" He continued on this note in his first question to the Democrat:
HBO's Bill Maher spouted his usual anti-conservative and anti-Fox News rhetoric on Monday's Situation Room on CNN, attacking the Tea Party movement as "teabaggers [who] are all carrying the banner...of corporatist America" and accusing CNN's competitor of "filling people with misinformation." Maher also labeled Republican voters "far right" and a "fringe group of people who are very forceful."
The left-wing HBO host appeared for two segments starting at the bottom of the 5 pm Eastern hour. Anchor Wolf Blitzer began with an election-related question: "Let's talk a little bit about what's going to happen tomorrow. A lot of Democrats are worried. They're sitting on a potential political disaster tomorrow. Here's the question to you: why? What happened?"
Maher actually first blamed the Democrats: "Well- I mean, partly, it is the Democrats' fault. They don't do very good at bragging about their achievements. This Congress, which I'm sure is going to be tarred as a do-nothing Congress, actually was one of the more successful congresses in recent memory, probably not since Lyndon Johnson in 1965 has a Congress achieved so much." The guest predictably cited health care "reform" and financial reforms as his examples.
Blitzer followed-up by asking, "So is it just a matter of communications?" Maher launched his attack on Fox News in his reply:
CNN led their hour-long documentary "Boiling Point: Inside the Tea Party," which aired on Saturday and Sunday, with the regular accusation from liberals that racism is "running rampant" in the Tea Party movement. Host Shannon Travis highlighted the NAACP's resolution, disgraced former Tea Party Express leader Mark Williams's self-described "foolish satire," and played up two racially-charged signs.
Before raising the racism charge, Travis raised another liberal stereotype perpetuated by the mainstream media: the angry Tea Party: "This is what you know about the Tea Party Movement: rallies like these, angry protesters demanding that lawmakers spend less of your money and spend more time adhering to the Constitution." After stating that "rallies like these across the country, don't tell the full picture" and that "there's a lot you don't know about the Tea Party movement," the CNN host stopped briefly to give some poll numbers on the partisan breakdown of the movement before proceeding to the race issue:
My military friends have a favorite saying: "If you're not catching flak, you're not over the target." This campaign season, conservative women in politics have caught more flak than WWII Lancaster bombers over Berlin. Despite daily assaults from the Democratic machine, liberal media and Hollyweird — not to mention the stray fraggings from Beltway GOP elites — the ladies of the right have maintained their dignity, grace and wit. Voters will remember in November.
When "comedian" and "The View" co-host Joy Behar lambasted GOP Nevada Senate candidate Sharron Angle this week as a "b*tch" who would be "going to h*ll" for using images of illegal alien gang members in a campaign ad, Angle responded by sending a lovely bouquet of flowers and a good-humored note: "Joy, Raised $150,000 online yesterday. Thanks for your help. Sincerely, Sharron Angle."
In the span of a mere 50 seconds on Thursday's NBC Nightly News, Andrea Mitchell managed to apply a conservative ideological tag four times to Pat Toomey, the Republican candidate for U.S. Senate in Pennsylvania, yet she failed to issue even a single label for liberal Democratic candidate Joe Sestak.
Sitting at the anchor desk with Brian Williams, Mitchell made clear Toomey “is a Republican fiscal conservative who was fiscally conservative before the Tea Party was cool,” soon repeating, in the narration for her story, how “Toomey is a former Congressman and a fiscal conservative” – all before driving home his ideology once more as she recalled that he “led a conservative Washington interest group.”
On Thursday's Newsroom, CNN's Fareed Zakaria endorsed a predictably liberal solution to get the American economy moving again: enact more taxes and implement new government programs. Zakaria called for a national sales tax and advocated new government spending on "research and technology" and "upgrading the infrastructure." The CNN host also labeled tax cuts "bad stuff."
Anchor Ali Velshi brought on Zakaria during the last segment of the 2 pm Eastern hour to discuss his upcoming cover story for Time magazine, "How to Restore The American Dream." Velshi labeled the article a "must-read" and first asked his guest, "I overheard a conversation between you and someone else the other day where you said you don't even like using the world 'stimulus' anymore. There is an answer that doesn't emphasize consumption. It emphasizes investment. Explain that to me."
The Time editor stated that "as a society, we are over-consuming, and for the last 20 years, we've consumed more and more, not because we had any increase in wages, but because we borrowed more." He continued with his government spending recommendation and his negative labeling of tax cuts:
[Update, 12:15 pm Wednesday: See below on CNN's additional coverage of the assault.]
CNN devoted seven news briefs on Tuesday to an assault on a MoveOn.org employee by Rand Paul supporters caught on camera outside the Kentucky Senate debate on Monday evening, but failed to mention a second assault on Rand Paul supporter by a booster of Paul's opponent, Jack Conway. Most of the briefs also omitted how the MoveOn employee was trying to get an embarrassing picture of Paul.
Emily Maxwell of KYPost.com reported late on Monday how "tensions flared at he senatorial candidates' debate here Monday night in two confrontations between Conway and Paul supporters, Lexington police reported. The first involved a woman who is a member of www.moveon.org and who was determined to pose in front of Rand Paul holding a sign that read 'Rand Paul Republicore: Employee of the Month.'" After detailing this first incident, Maxwell continued that "the second occurred after a Conway supporter stepped on the foot of a female Rand supporter, who recently had foot surgery, according to police. The woman was wearing a surgical boot, but after the injury, her incision was cut open. Police say she refused medical treatment and also filed an assault report."
Anchor John Roberts set the example for CNN's coverage of the incidents in his news brief six minutes into the 7 am Eastern hour of American Morning, as the video of the assault on Lauren Valle, the MoveOn.org employee played:
Update (15:20 EDT): Fargo, N.D.-based radio host friend of NewsBusters Rob Port takes on this Newsweek item on his Say Anything blog today and eviscerates David Graham's article as error-laden and grossly misleading.
"Can one Blue Dog’s unorthodox ad strategy localize his election and head off the demise of another incumbent?" asked the subheadline.
Of course, both the moderate and Blue Dog tags bring to mind a Democrat that perhaps agrees with the liberal leadership of his party about half of the time, but is fairly independent and conservative-minded on a whole host of issues. Trouble is, this is precisely what Pomeroy is not, according to both the liberal Americans for Democratic Action (ADA) and the American Conservative Union (ACU).