Wednesday's CBS This Morning featured a full report on an outrageous attempt by Illinois Democrats to shove through $100 million in taxpayer funds for Barack Obama's future presidential library despite the state being $7 billion in debt. Meanwhile, NBC and ABC ignored the brewing controversy.
This Morning co-host Norah O'Donnell noted the proposed massive spending was "a controversial move for a state that's pretty deep in debt." Correspondent Nancy Cordes explained: "That's right, $7 billion in debt. But Democrats in Illinois say allocating this money will help to convince the Obama Foundation to locate the Obama Library in Chicago, while many Republicans argue the President's hometown is the front-runner anyway and that this is an expense their state can't afford." [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
ABC, CBS, and NBC have set aside over 146 minutes of air time on their morning and evening newscasts to the controversy surrounding a racist tirade by L.A. Clippers owner Donald Sterling. However, as of Wednesday morning, the Big Three networks have yet to pick up on a Tuesday scoop from Buzzfeed's Andrew Kaczynski, who discovered "shocking racial comments" by a sitting Democratic congressman.
Mississippi Rep. Bennie Thompson unleashed on Senator Mitch McConnell and Clarence Thomas, and Republicans in general, on a radio program of the New Nation of Islam – a sect that holds that "intermarriage or race mixing should be prohibited" and that blacks should be "allowed to establish a separate state or territory of their own - either on this continent or elsewhere." Fox News Channel's Fox and Friends on Wednesday devoted a full report to Rep. Thompson's bigoted remarks: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
After White House emails released on Tuesday showed the Obama administration had a direct hand in crafting false talking points about the Benghazi terrorist attack in 2012, Wednesday's CBS This Morning was the only network broadcast to cover the latest developments in the ongoing scandal. None of the network evening newscasts covered the story Tuesday night, with NBC and ABC continuing to be out to lunch Wednesday morning.
Introducing a full report on the Benghazi emails, This Morning co-host Charlie Rose announced: "New emails are renewing controversy this morning over the Obama administration's response to Benghazi. The documents were obtained by the conservative organization Judicial Watch. Four Americans died in the 2012 assault, including Ambassador Chris Stevens." [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
Appearing as a guest on Tuesday's All In on MSNBC to discuss the controversy over Donald Sterling's racist comments, HBO comedian Bill Maher managed to make a crack about Rush Limbaugh.
He answered a question from host Chris Hayes about whether there would be an increase in the number of people defending Sterling in the aftermath of his punishment. Maher said Limbaugh will "find a way to say something worse" than Sterling. [See video below.]
On the Monday, April 28, The Ed Show, MSNBC host Ed Schultz devoted the first segment of nearly 15 minutes of his show to trying to link prominent conservatives like Paul Ryan to the racist views of people like Cliven Bundy and Donald Sterling, whom the MSNBC host failed to label as a Democratic donor.
Schultz charged that Ryan and other GOPers "support policies that attack minorities" and later reiterated that conservatives "fuel racism by their policies that attack minorities." [See video below.]
On the Monday, April 28, PoliticsNation on MSNBC, during a discussion of the arrest of New York Republican Rep. Michael Grimm, the Washington Post's Dana Milbank played up the possibility that this scandal and others involving GOP congressmen could hurt Republican candidates in other parts of the country. Milbank:
ABC, CBS, and NBC spotlighted the issue of child sex abuse by priests on their Saturday morning and evening newscasts – twenty-four hours or less before the Catholic Church canonized Popes John XXIII and John Paul II. CBS and NBC both uncritically turned to the president of Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP), but didn't mention her controversial affiliations with prominent anti-Catholics.
CBS and ABC also hyped how "some of the faithful have complained the canonization process was fast-tracked." ABC's Terry Moran even inserted some slanted labeling of the Catholic practice of venerating the relics of saints on Saturday's World News, and wondered if modern people could relate to the Church's examples of holiness: [MP3 audio from the networks' reporting available here; video below the jump]
Politico's David Nather must have thought he was so clever. Here's how he opened a recent column: "It can happen to anyone, right? You rally behind a guy ... and suddenly he’s spewing racist bile and boy, does it splash on your face." Yes, I left out a few words, and I'll get to that. But before providing them, the quote just rendered would apply to how those at Los Angeles branch of the NAACP must feel about their now-withdrawn but not forgotten plan to confer a lifetime achievement award on Los Angeles Clippers' owner Donald Sterling, who has been caught on tape allegedly telling a woman that she shouldn't "associate with black people" or have blacks accompany her to Clippers games.
Let's revise Nather's blather a bit for another comic circumstance: "It can happen to anyone, right? You rally behind a guy because he comes over to your side on climate change, and suddenly he’s arrested in 'a 20-count federal indictment that includes charges of mail fraud, wire fraud and tax fraud.' Boy, does it splash on your face." Now I'm talking about the fools at Organizing For Action, who celebrated the "breakthrough" of having GOP Congressman Michael Grimm come over to their side mere days before his indictment, which occurred today.
On the Sunday, April 27, Melissa Harris-Perry show, during a discussion of new laws restricting abortion in Mississippi and Texas, guest Chloe Angyal of Feministing.com ridiculously saw "white supremacy" in Republican state legislators who had worked to reduce abortion, and asserted that these GOPers should be "ashamed of themselves."
Marcus Mabry of The New York Times stated the legal question was "at what point will the Supreme Court say the state impediments to a woman's ability to get an abortion actually represent illegal actions?" [See video below.]
In a Saturday afternoon tweet, former Bill Clinton campaign strategist and former CNN talking head Paul Begala showed that he's quite a confused guy concerning Los Angeles Clippers' owner Donald Sterling. Sterling, as noted previously (here and here), has been caught on tape chiding a person who is apparently his girlfriend for "taking pictures with minorities" and "associating with black people." Sterling sees her as a "delicate" "Latina or white girl" who shouldn't "associate with black people." He asks her not to bring black people, including NBA legend Magic Johnson, to games.
Given these developments, Begala gave a "friendly tip" to several conservatives and Republicans, specifically talk radio's Sean Hannity and GOP Senators Rand Paul and Ted Cruz. In the process, he betrayed a likely need to broaden his media consumption habits beyond the liberal bubble. Begala's tweet follows the jump:
A Friday afternoon email I received from Organizing For Action, aka BarackObama.com, aka the group whose mission in life is to support whatever President Obama wants them to support, took me by surprise.
The email, which is replicated at an OFA post, told readers that "There's one fewer climate change denier in Congress." I figured that the congressman who flipped almost had to be a Republican, and I was right: "Congressman Michael Grimm (NY-11) is standing up for an honest and reality-based discussion on what to do about climate change." I also thought to myself that something else must be going here. Is it ever. I hope OFA didn't spend too much on party favors for what it described as a "breakthrough," because they happen to be cheering the "conversion" of a guy who is about to be indicted:
On the Friday, April 25, PoliticsNation on MSNBC, during a discussion of FNC host Sean Hannity's reaction to racist comments by Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy, MSNBC host Al Sharpton went after Hannity's decision to reiterate some of his complaints about the Obama administration on his Hannity show after condemning Bundy's racism.
Guest Joan Walsh of Salon magazine ended up comparing Hannity's anti-Obama complaints to criticisms of the Clinton administration in the 1990s which she asserted "culminated in Timothy McVeigh." [See video below.]
On the Thursday, April 24, The Last Word with Lawrence O'Donnell, during a discussion of conservatives rejecting Cliven Bundy after the airing of the Nevada rancher's racist comments, Washington Post columnist Jonathan Capehart claimed that other Republicans, including officeholders, had similarly "extol[led] the wonders and the virtues and the beauty of slavery," without naming any names, as he asserted that Bundy's words were "not an isolated statement."
From time to time, leftist media members have regaled us about how the Obama administration somehow remains totally or nearly scandal-free (two of many examples are here and here). Part of the reason they actually believe this is because real-time press dispatches covering scandalous circumstances are rarely described that way.
The journalistic gymnastics involved were on vivid display Friday evening at the Associated Press, aka the Administration's Press. In one of the more ridiculous such dispatches to date composed by the Obama-supportive media, AP reporter Alicia A. Caldwell lauded new Department of Homeland Security head Jeh Johnson for taking actions to "to tamp down what could have been political scandals." The problem with that assessment in two of the three instances Caldwell cited is that a "scandal" ("a disgraceful or discreditable action, circumstance, etc.") had already occurred.
A search at the Associated Press's national site on the last name of Illinois Governor Patrick Quinn and "Jews" at 7:30 this evening returned nothing.
That's pretty amazing, considering that Quinn's campaign enthusiastically retweeted its support for an outrageous April 17 column by Neil Steinberg at the Chicago Sun-Times. For all practical purposes, Steinberg equated African-Americans who might support Republican Bruce Rauner in November's gubernatorial election against Quinn to "Jews (who) collaborated with the Nazis during World War II, helping them to round up their own people in the hopes they’d be the last to go." Quinn's people quietly deleted the tweets, according to the Washington Free Beacon's Adam Kredo, "after local Jewish community officials quietly communicated their outrage to the governor." Given that the time between the tweets and the deletes was apparently a few days, and that the sort-of apologies came almost a week after Steinberg's column, I'm not detecting a lot of sincerity here. Coverage from CNN's Political Ticker follows the jump (bolds are mine; links are in original):
Lefty bloggers often use "get the popcorn" and similar phrases when they anticipate being entertained by conservative infighting. If Salon's Heather Digby Parton is right, popcorn consumption in the netroots will be sky-high a little over a year from now for a "political cage match of epic proportions" between "two grotesque phantasms": the Tea Party and the mega-rich. The prize for the winner: the Republican party.
Digby believes the upcoming clash wouldn't even be happening if not for the GOP establishment, which, after all, "created the Tea Party out of that original white, working-class bloc [of former Reagan Democrats] by feeding their prejudices and stoking their insecurities."
On the Thursday, April 24, All In with Chris Hayes, during a discussion of racist comments about black Americans by Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy, MSNBC political analyst Michael Eric Dyson compared those words to a recent statement by Wisconsin Republican Rep. Paul Ryan about the work ethic in the inner cities. [See video below.]
The press and the left are trying to pretend that Cliven Bundy, the Republican Party, and conservatism are all one and the same, despite no evidence of that being the case, because of intemperate things Mr. Bundy has said. Meanwhile, there is deafening silence over the very real actions of Gurbaksh Chahal, a significant Democratic Party donor who has expressed solidarity with liberalism and the Democratic Party with his mouth and his wallet.
Bundy has made arguably racist remarks. Chahal, who has donated over $108,000 to the Democratic Party and Democrat politicians — including President Barack Obama — during the past several years, has been "filmed hitting and kicking his girlfriend 117 times in (a) brutal 30-minute attack," but was somehow "sentenced to just 25 hours community service," largely because the judge involved "ruled the video inadmissible as the San Francisco Police Department had obtained it without a warrant" (for real-world purposes, note that he didn't describe it as inauthentic). Let's demonstrate the double standard by looking at the results of two searches done shortly after 11 p.m. on Thursday.
Norah O'Donnell pursued Texas Governor Rick Perry on Thursday's CBS This Morning over the controversial land dispute between Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy and the federal government. O'Donnell asked Perry, "What do you make of this standoff? What do you think of Clive Bundy? Do you think what he's done was a good thing?"
When the Republican politician replied that Bundy is a "side story," and that "rather than sending armed troops....I hope our government officials...use common sense when it comes to these issues of conflict...dealing with something...in a substantially-less confrontational way," the CBS anchor followed up by spotlighting the rancher's racially-charged remarks: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
There’s a slow but steady drumbeat of support building up in the media for an Elizabeth Warren presidential run, and MSNBC is playing a huge part in it. On Wednesday’s All In, host Chris Hayes chatted with Esquire’s Charles Pierce about what makes Sen. Warren (D-Mass.) so great. Hayes began the interview by asking, “[W]hat is it about Elizabeth Warren that people love so much? There is some quality that is bringing something out in people.”
Pierce, who wrote a profile of Warren in Esquire, made a flattering comparison of the senator’s speaking style to that of an iconic liberal president. He exclaimed that “she gets the same effect out of ‘golly’ that Lyndon Johnson used to get out of curse words.” [Video below. MP3 audio here.]
“I’ll take ‘Explicit Media Bias” for $500, Alex.” On the April 23 “Jeopardy,” a reporter for The New York Times actually admitted that it was part of his job to “annoy” Representative Darrell Issa (R-Calif.).
The admission came as a question under the category “Man of the House” about House Representatives. In the video question, New York Times reporter Eric Lichtblau introduces himself and asks:
On the Wednesday, April 23, The Last Word with Lawrence O'Donnell on MSNBC, guest host Ari Melber ignored concerns expressed for some time by conservatives that ObamaCare regulations would cause Americans to lose private health insurance plans they already had as the MSNBC host suggested that Tea Party Republicans do not care about people being uninsured and claimed that the goal of repealing ObamaCare is to "make sure more people are uninsured."
After MSNBC's Krystal Ball complained about Republican governors who have refused to expand Medicaid, Melber turned to recent claims by Kansas Republican Rep. Tim Huelskamp that fewer people in Kansas are insured now than before ObamaCare. [See video below.]
On the Wednesday, April 23, PoliticsNation on MSNBC, Washington Post columnist Jonathan Capehart asserted that Republican doubts about global warming would be "one more thing that is going to hasten the demise, the end of the Republican Party" as he reacted to a clip of several North Carolina Republican Senate candidates expressing doubts when asked if "climate change" is a "fact."
And, as she appeared as a guest, allegedly right-leaning MSNBC host Abby Huntsman predicted that Republicans would be "out of business" if they lose the elections of 2016. [See video below.]
March was going to be the month when new home sales in the U.S. would finally break out after several months of horrible weather. After all, everyone knew that this winter's snow, ice, and low temperatures were the only things holding the new home market back. Consensus predictions ahead of today's related report from the Census Bureau were in the range of 450,000 to 455,000 annualized sales.
Oops. New home sales dove to a seasonally adjusted annualized 384,000, a 14.5 percent decline from February, a slightly larger miss compared to expectations, and a whopping 13.3 percent lower than March 2013. Press reports on this result predictably brought on appearances of the U-word ("unexpectedly"), with at least one interesting twist.
One minute the liberal media will tell you that Hillary Clinton is a tough-as-nails politician and stateswoman who is eminently qualified for the White House and in the next the same folks are in high dudgeon about how the former secretary of state is the target of mean ol' "sexist" and "ageist" Republicans.
Witness msnbc.com's Aliyah Frumin riding valiantly to the rescue of the poor sexagenarian damsel in distress/grandmother-to-be. "When it comes to conservative criticism of the Clintons, not even Chelsea’s unborn child is immune," Frumin laments, citing a New York Post columnist as her evidence of a vast right-wing conspiracy to rain on Grandma Hillary's 2016 parade:
Jill Abramson of the New York Times denied that her newspaper has a liberal bias during a Monday interview with Marlo Thomas of Huffington Post. Abramson asserted that the Times "reflects a very cosmopolitan, inclusive outlook, which can strike some readers as liberal," and later claimed that "the news pages are not ideological."
The executive editor zeroed in on the issue of gun control as her example of how the New York Times is supposedly balanced: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
On Monday’s PBS NewsHour, anchor Judy Woodruff sat down for a conversation with former U.S. Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens, and she tried to get the amiable, elderly jurist to criticize his more conservative former colleagues. Stevens, to his credit, didn’t take the bait. [Video below. MP3 audio here.]
The interview focused on Stevens’ new book about six amendments he would like to see added to the Constitution. Near the end of the discussion, Woodruff sought to make waves by getting Stevens to charge conservatives on the court with a partisan agenda:
In a bravura display of rhetorical contortion, Rachel Maddow spent 10 minutes last night talking about net metering without actually uttering the words themselves -- all the better to prevent her gullible viewers from taking a closer look at this problematic policy.
As mandated in 43 states and the District of Columbia, net metering allows small-scale generators of electricity, such as those with solar panels on their roofs, to sell excess electricity back to power companies. Utilities don't like it because most states require power companies to buy this electricity at retail prices, rather than the far lower wholesale cost. (Video after the jump)
Appearing as a guest on the Monday, April 21, All In with Chris Hayes, Daily Beast columnist Michelle Goldberg -- also of the far left The Nation magazine -- invoked the Oklahoma City Bombing during a discussion of the Cliven Bundy standoff, as she accused the Republican Party of "playing footsie" with militias during the Clinton administration, and suggested culpabilty by Republicans in stoking violence. [See video below.]