CNN's Don Lemon said last year that he hoped to "change minds" when he declared that he was gay. And on Sunday evening he showed exactly where he lies on same-sex marriage and in no small words challenged the fundamental beliefs of its opponents, comparing them to those who opposed interracial marriage and integration.
He later compared Mitt Romney to segregationist Governor George Wallace, but during the 6 p.m. hour Lemon hosted activist Rev. Joseph Lowery – who also gave the benediction at President Obama's inauguration – and both of them criticized opponents of same-sex marriage. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
CNN's Don Lemon Sunday evening compared Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney to former Alabama governor George Wallace.
At the beginning of a CNN Newsroom segment he calls "No Talking Points," Lemon played a clip of Wallace saying in 1963, "I say segregation now, segregation tomorrow, and segregation forever" followed by Romney saying Saturday, "Marriage is a relationship between one man and one woman" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Even though CNN's Suzanne Malveaux admitted she had no clue what Mitt Romney actually did in high school, she and a guest psychologist tried to speculate away on Friday afternoon's Newsroom. The conclusion: Romney may not recall the incident he has been accused of, but his apology for it reveals the probability of guilt for a "very violent" act of forcibly cutting someone's hair.
"I have no idea what Romney did or didn't do," Malveaux admitted ignorance, before intoning that Romney was probably still in the wrong. "[T]he bullies never recall what they did. I mean it's absolutely astonishing the kids who tormented and taunted others seem to have no idea as adults how their behavior actually impacted others," she noted. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
It didn't take long after President Obama voiced his support for same-sex marriage for CNN to gauge the enthusiasm of those in favor of the move. After the news broke at 3 p.m Wednesday, the first three guests CNN interviewed were all openly-gay and supported Obama's decision. It took well over two hours for a guest to appear who opposed the decision.
And in the three hours of coverage following Obama's "historic" announcement, five of CNN's guests expressed their support for his decision. Only one, Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council, opposed it. And the three openly-gay guests were pampered with soft questions, like "What was your first reaction" and "Did you start to cry?"
President Barack Obama has apparently completed his evolution on gay marriage. On CNN Newsroom's 3:00 pm segment today, anchor Brooke Baldwin spoke with chief national correspondent John King on the subject and he began by noting "we should say up front it's a bold, personal choice for the president to decide to do this publicly." His analysis included what he perceives as possible risks:
Critically to me, Brooke, in this calculation, African-Americans and Latinos. Many Latinos who are Catholics. They go to Catholic Church, where their priest tells them every Sunday homosexuality isn't just wrong, it's evil. That's what their priest tells them. It's evil.
A lot of African-American preachers in the Southern Baptist -- Southern churches across this country, but particularly in Virginia, North Carolina, states the president carried last time, say the same thing.
After Vice President Joe Biden voiced his support of same-sex marriage over the weekend, CNN jumped all over the news on Monday and expectantly wondered if President Obama would follow suit. In fact, prime-time host Piers Morgan went so far as to admire the "brave Catholic" Biden for dissenting from Church teaching on the issue.
During every hour save one from 5 a.m. all the way through 10 p.m. on Monday, CNN hyped that Obama administration officials had come out in support of same-sex marriage. They hosted the executive director of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force for a soft interview and aired quotes from the pro-gay Human Rights Campaign and a parent with a lesbian daughter.
It must be campaign season. Fact-checking gurus are rating accurate statements by the Romney campaign as "Mostly False" or "Half True" or – the best – "True but False," since they're correct but they apparently don't tell the whole story.
However, when President Obama made a factually-incorrect statement last week, he did not receive a "False" rating from the website PolitiFact, but benefitted from a grading curve since he "has a point" to make. Romney received the same "Half True" rating for a factually-correct statement.
CNN host Don Lemon cracked up over a raunchy joke about Michele Bachmann's husband, on Sunday night's 6 p.m. edition of Newsroom. Conservative guest Will Cain then confronted the openly-gay anchor over why it was okay to make fun of Bachmann appearing to be gay.
"If, as the joke suggests Marcus Bachmann is gay, but he hasn't come to grips with himself. Now, I'm asking two guys who've been through this process, honestly, I'm honestly curious, why is it okay to make fun of him then?" Cain inquired. Lemon "came out" about his orientation a year ago and expressed his wishes that prejudices about homosexuality would be overcome. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
When it comes to social issues, you can expect to get mostly one side of the story from CNN's reporting – the liberal side. On Thursday morning, that trend continued as anchor Kyra Phillips sympathized with a Catholic school teacher fired because she was using sick days to receive in vitro fertilization, a practice condemned by the Catholic Church.
Phillips started off with this jab at the Church: "Well, in vitro fertilization is a godsend for millions of infertile couples who long to have children, but the Catholic Church says it's a sin." So tell us where you really stand on this, Kyra. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
[UPDATE: CNN covered the story throughout the day, interviewing Fr. Reese from Georgetown University not twice, not three times, but a total of four times on Thursday. Aside from the liberal James Salt of Catholics United, no other guest appeared on CNN to discuss the issue.]
When liberal Catholics protested Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.) speaking at Georgetown University on Thursday, CNN jumped all over the story and gave it 11 full minutes of coverage during the 9-11 a.m. hours of Newsroom. In contrast, when the Obama administration issued its birth control mandate and Catholic bishops voiced their staunch opposition, CNN mentioned the story once in ten days.
Anchor Carol Costello brought on two guests protesting Ryan's budget, and hosted no supporter of Ryan although she did read his own statement in defense of his budget. She reported the "collision of politics and faith" and that the congressman was "about to get his knuckles rapped by dozens of Catholic priests." The CNN headline blared "Fellow Catholics Blast Ryan."
CNN continued to show its unvarnished support for the GLAAD cause on Wednesday. Anchor Kyra Phillips was dripping with sympathy for a lesbian mother recently removed by the Boy Scouts as local cub den leader because of her orientation.
Phillips fawned over the subject's son as she asked him such questions as "tell me what makes your mom such a great den leader" and "Do you think it's pretty cool to have two mommies?" CNN claims to be a serious news network, but Phillips' "interview" could have passed for Oprah any day of the week as she helped Jennifer Tyrrell carry out her "mission" of changing the Boy Scout protocol of no gay den leaders. [Video below the break.]
CNN even noted it was an "election year" before giving Obama's Education Secretary a chance to share his "proudest" accomplishment from his time in office, no doubt bolstering the administration's re-election message.
Host Brooke Baldwin declined to ask any tough questions of Secretary of Education Arne Duncan during a lame Tuesday afternoon interview. Baldwin topped it all off with a soft parting question "on a more personal note." [Video below the break. Audio here.]
In his "No Talking Points" segment on CNN Newsroom, he had the unmitigated audacity to challenge Barack Obama while agreeing with former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Over the last few decades, the liberal media have celebrated Earth Day and used it to spread the gospel of green liberalism. CNN's Sunday reporting was no exception as the network touted public figures headlining an Earth Day rally in Washington, D.C., like the city's Democratic Mayor Vincent Gray and the rock band Cheap Trick.
However, for the March for Life rally in January that was attended by at least tens of thousands of pro-lifers, CNN gave it two brief mentions on-air. In contrast, while reportedly only hundreds showed up to celebrate Earth Day on the National Mall, CNN touted it as a "big rally" and covered it in-depth on Sunday afternoon, telling its viewers "we want you to know all about this." [Video below the break. Audio here.]
On today's 3:00 pm edition of CNN Newsroom, anchor Brooke Baldwin teased her next segment:
BALDWIN: Coming up next, House Republicans they want to cut billions of dollars in food stamps. We will talk about who exactly in terms of numbers this would impact and why my next guest calls this whole suggestion appalling -- back in 60 seconds.
Baldwin interviewed Edward Cooney, executive director of the Congressional Hunger Center. She didn't note that, despite its official-sounding name, the center is just another 501(c)3 tax-exempt organization taking money from companies such as Walmart, Kraft, and Archer Daniel Midland, as well public funding for fellowships. Nor that Cooney had worked at the Department of Agriculture during the Clinton administration. Nor that Cooney has made political contributions to Sen. Tom Harkin (D-IA) and ActBlue, which characterizes itself as "the online clearing house for Democratic action."
As NewsBusters previously reported, CNN's Don Lemon two Saturdays ago advocated journalists actually say the N-word in news reports rather than the more politically correct, sanitized version we've grown accustomed to in recent years.
On Sunday, I chatted with Lemon about this issue - along with Big Journalism's Dana Loesch - on CNN Newsroom (video follows with transcript and lengthy commentary):
The media is beginning to investigate Mitt Romney's Mormon faith and its racial history, and CNN continued the race narrative on Wednesday morning when it wondered if Romney is simply writing off the African-American vote.
Apparently, CNN never got the memo that Herman Cain all but officially endorsed Romney on Tuesday. Citing a Daily Beast report that Romney has no high-profile African-American endorsements or staffers, CNN's Carol Costello went ahead and asked if the candidate was "kissing off African-American voters". [Video below the break. Audio here.]
According to Muslim comedian and CNN regular Dean Obeidallah, Rick Santorum speaks the language of "the Taliban" when he talks about the intersection of church and state in America. On CNN Sunday night, liberal host Don Lemon decided to have a religious discussion for Easter Sunday, and his first question was about the separation of church and state.
Obeidallah has attacked Santorum in the past, and found a way to bring him into the discussion. He referred to Santorum "saying the Bible and our laws must comport," adding later that "He was saying the same things honestly that the Taliban would say, that religious scripture and the laws of that state must agree." [Video below the break. Audio here.]
On today's CNN Newsroom, anchor Kyra Phillips interviewed Rep. Allen West (R-FL) about several topics. One was gay marriage (video here). West said that it's a states' issue and he didn't want to be taken "down a rabbit hole to discuss things that really aren't that important. This disturbed Phillips:
In a Thursday morning interview on CNN, RNC chairman Reince Priebus called out host Carol Costello for reading Democratic talking points. Costello had just told her guest that she was trying to wean him away from his talking points, but one can only wonder if she would do the same to DNC chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz.
When Costello told him "I'm just trying to get you off your talking points," Priebus retorted "Well, you've been reading the Democratic talking points for the last seven minutes, Carol." [Video below the break.]
Discussing gun laws in the aftermath of the Trayvon Martin shooting, CNN's Carol Costello played Bill Maher's liberal grievance about the lack of "sensible" gun laws. Costello then asked why no one was "talking seriously about America's gun laws?" during Tuesday's 10 a.m. hour of Newsroom.
The fact that CNN was giving such attention to a liberal comedian before adding on to his commentary and questioning America's gun laws is telling. And given the network's past bias, it's safe to say that Costello was toeing the liberal line and pushing for stricter gun laws for law-abiding citizens. [Video below the break.]
After another bad day at the Supreme Court for the Obama administration's health care law, journalists on MSNBC and CNN marveled at how the President's signature legislation seemed to be unraveling. Appearing on MSNBC, HD Net reporter Brooks Silva-Braga compared the Solicitor General (who defended the law in front of the court) to an embarrassed child.
Silva-Braga mocked, "If you've ever been to a fifth grade play and looked into the eyes of a kid who is not sure if he's going to remember his lines, that's what Donald Verrilli looked like yesterday." [See video below. MP3 audio here.] On CNN, Jeffrey Toobin, who on Tuesday reversed a previous prediction of an easy win for Obama, sneered that Obamacare had become a "plane wreck."
For the second day in a row, CNN appealed to emotion and aired the story of an innocent chid that made the case for ObamaCare. On Tuesday morning they featured a heartrending account of an epileptic three year-old girl who will soon reach her lifetime benefit limits on health insurance – if the Supreme Court strikes down ObamaCare.
CNN correspondent Elizabeth Cohen made the Court's decision as personal as possible, even though the Court is simply determining the constitutionality of the bill. "These nine Supreme Court justices will forever affect the life of 3-year-old Violet McManus," she gravely began. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
According to CNN host Carol Costello, the White House failed to sell a health care bill that could have been embraced by the American people, many of whom "simply don't understand" the bill.
So during Monday morning's coverage of the Supreme Court hearings on ObamaCare's constitutionality, CNN explained some benefits the bill provides and gave the reason for the individual insurance mandate. Costello did her best impersonation of a White House advisor, explaining the bill's mandate to a public who doesn't understand it yet. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
CNN commentator Dean Obeidallah has some advice for politicians who are offended by gross and vile insults from comedians: "change the channel."
Comedians like Bill Maher and Louis C.K. must have an "unfettered right" to spew their vitriol at politicians like Sarah Palin, insisted Obeidallah in a CNN.com op-ed. Such insults "come with the territory" of running for office, he told CNN host Brooke Baldwin on Thursday afternoon's Newsroom. [Video below the break.]
In light of Rick Santorum's promise to "vigorously enforce" federal obscenity laws, CNN questioned whether any candidate should even be talking about pornography right now. Host Fredricka Whitfield expressed her disbelief that the subject was even in the news conversation, during Friday's 11 a.m. hour of Newsroom.
Santorum has not made the issue the centerpiece of his campaign, as GOP strategist Ana Navarro pointed out. It is, however, an important matter for social conservatives who make up a strong voting bloc for the candidate. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
ABC broadcasted two completely one-sided reports on Thursday's World News and Nightline on the supposed "huge spike in the number of Americans operating in the shadows, trying to take down the U.S. government even with violence," as anchor Diane Sawyer put it. Correspondent Dan Harris's main external source for his reports was a media favorite, the left-wing Southern Poverty Law Center [audio clips available here].
As she introduced Harris's first report on World News, Sawyer trumped that "a new study finds there are now nearly 1,300 militias and other extremist groups in this country, an increase from 149 groups in 2008. And one of the fastest-growing groups is called 'sovereign citizens.'" However, an examination of the SPLC's report in question find that many of these supposed "extremist" groups have been around for longer than four years, and the only change is that the leftist organization recently designated them as such.
[Update, 09:27 pm Eastern: audio added above; video below the jump]