Blogs

By Tom Blumer | October 25, 2014 | 9:20 AM EDT

One can only imagine how much grief the national press would have given Laura Bush had she gone on the midterm congressional campaign trail during her husband's presidency and mispronounced the name of a Republican senatorial candidate, or if she had presented part of the bio of a Democratic opponent as that of the incumbent Republican for whom she was stumping.

First Lady Michelle Obama has done both things — reversing parties, of course — in recent weeks. The national press is largely pretending that these things never happened, and, when they do notice the gaffes, making excuses for her.

By Tom Blumer | October 24, 2014 | 6:21 AM EDT

Imagine the pile-on that would be occurring from other members of the nation's establishment press if a Republican or conservative U.S. Senate candidate went after an individual member of the press as Alison Grimes just has against NBC/MSNBC reporter Chuck Todd. The "How dare you?" cries would be everywhere.

It's hard to see how employing such a tactic works to get votes, but Grimes, the Democrats' candidate for U.S. Senate in Kentucky, seems to think that acting as if she's standing up to playground bullies might get her some mileage. Todd, along with incumbent Republican Senator Mitch McConnell, is one of the supposedly all-powerful bullies. Video follows the jump:

By Tom Blumer | October 23, 2014 | 5:45 PM EDT

Taking the web site even further down the path of useless, pretentious collection of hackery than it already is — and that's quite far — Vox.com has tweeted (HT Twitchy) that "Our obsession with the Ottawa shooter's religion reveals more about us than about him." It must be a shock to their system to learn that a lot of "us" would rather not be cut down by a member of the alleged "Religion of Peace."

The site's underlying writeup by Amanda Taub accuses "us" of jumping to conclusions, when there was plenty of evidence from the get-go that the attack was jihadist in nature:

By Tom Blumer | October 23, 2014 | 4:03 PM EDT

Here's the first sentence from an Associated Press dispatch relating to a breaking news story out of Israel: "OCCUPIED JERUSALEM: Israeli police say they have shot a man whose car slammed into a crowded train stop in east Jerusalem, in what they suspect was an intentional attack." ("OCCUPIED JERUSALEM"" Really? — Ed.) The story goes on to note that nine people were wounded.

By Tom Blumer | October 21, 2014 | 4:02 PM EDT

Elizabeth Williamson's coverage at the Wall Street Journal of the latest WSJ/NBC News poll has a very strange omission.

It contains a graph showing "right track/wrong track" polling percentages heading each midterm election going back to 1990. But Williamson, while addressing why the American people feel as they do right now in larger historical context, never commented on the graph's specific message, which is about as damning as it can get:

By Tom Blumer | October 21, 2014 | 1:24 PM EDT

Josh Lederman's report this morning at the Associated Press, aka the Administration's Press, treats President Barack Obama's return to Chicago as a trip down memory lane: "Obama got glimpses of a simpler time when his life was for the most part, normal: the unpaid bills on his desk, the volunteers who pitched in on his first Senate campaign, the day he marched in seven Fourth of July parades."

The reference to "unpaid bills" is from the President's remarks at a DNC event at a private home in Chicago. But the speech transcript now posted at the White House web site has scrubbed the related passage, as Daniel Halper at the Weekly Standard noted early this morning. There may have been an additional development since that post appeared.

By Tom Blumer | October 19, 2014 | 11:16 PM EDT

To the relief of sex offenders throughout the state, Arizona Democratic gubernatorial candidate Fred DuVal, during a Tuesday forum at Redemption Church in Gilbert, said that, in the words of an unbylined Washington Free Beacon story, "he is opposed to mandating parental consent for a girl as young as 14 years old to get an abortion."

This is a non-story in the establishment press, which made it a mission to take out two GOP U.S. Senate candidates two years ago over abortion-related remarks with far less real-world impact. Based on a search on "DuVal parental consent" (not in quotes) at the Arizona Republic, the paper hasn't done a story specifically noting DuVal's outrageous position — even though it did manage to notice that DuVal, like Ed FitzGerald, the Democrat who is running for Governor in Ohio, has been known to drive without a valid driver's license, though far less often or brazenly.

By Jeffrey Meyer | October 16, 2014 | 4:01 PM EDT

On Wednesday night, former Washington Post sports reporter Dave McKenna published a scathing hit piece for the sports website Deadspin, an affiliate of the blog Gawker, in which he claimed that Congressman Cory Gardner (R-CO) lied about playing high school football. With early voting underway in a race that could determine control of the U.S. Senate, McKenna thought he had an angle aimed at destroying the Republican Congressman’s electoral hopes. Unfortunately for the former Post reporter, within one hour the Deadspin smear campaign began to unravel as the sloppiness of the story quickly emerged. 

By Tom Blumer | October 15, 2014 | 11:58 PM EDT

For years, government watchdog groups have chronicled numerous instances of waste and abuse — at the very least — at the Centers for Disease Control and its National Institutes for Health.

An establishment press corps doing its job, upon hearing the director of the National Institutes for Health claim that "if we had not gone through our 10-year slide in research support, we probably would have had a vaccine" for Ebola by now, and especially upon hearing leftist poltiticians then claim that it's all Republicans' fault, would look into whether part of the problem might be poor bureacratic stewardship. But they're not doing their job.

By Tom Blumer | October 13, 2014 | 10:58 PM EDT

Apparently the folks at Vocativ, who took a look at over 600 presidential speeches going all the way back to George Washington, were a little reluctant to document what their "scientific" analysis of those speeches told them about this nation's two most recent chief executives.

After finding that there is very little difference between the "sophistication" of speeches made by President Obama and former President George W. Bush, the former Clinton speechwriter the firm enlisted to comment on the results couldn't resist taking a gratuitous and I believe false swipe at Bush 43, one which I daresay most readers here will find absolutely hysterical.

By Tom Blumer | October 12, 2014 | 1:41 PM EDT

Texas Democratic gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis's "wheelchair" ad, her latest and most despicable attempt to smear her Republican opponent, Attorney General Greg Abbott, got favorable reviews in a Friday evening column by Jonathan Tilove at the Austin American-Statesman.

Tilove, the Statesman's chief political writer, wrote that the ad provoked "debate about whether it was an act of unseemly desperation or daring inspiration," and asserted that it "breathed new life" into Davis's flagging campaign. Cheerlead much, Jonathan? As seen in the excerpts which follow, Tilove also found a prominent University of Texas at Austin prof who characterized the Davis ad as "ballsy" (bolds and numbered tags are mine):

By Tom Blumer | October 8, 2014 | 3:26 PM EDT

On Tuesday afternoon, a graphic at CNN described Former Obama administration Defense Secretary Leon Panetta as a "former aide."

Tuesday evening Eastern Time, the network, in video seen after the jump, also let long-time Obama loyalist Bill Burton smear Panetta as "sad," "dishonorable," and "small and petty." Burton also came within inches of accusing Panetta of betraying his country because we are now "at a time of a lot of instabilities around the world." It appears not to have dawned on Burton that President Obama's policies have at a minimum created the power vacuums which have caused those "instabilities" to arise.