On Sunday's Reliable Sources, the CNN panel scoffed at the media for getting "manipulated" by the White House last week into hyping Obama's meetings with the GOP as a "charm offensive." CNN's own reporting shows that it played right into those talking points.
"I love how easily the press corps is manipulated," remarked The Washington Post's Dana Milbank. "So, the President takes a few senators out to dinner at the Jefferson Hotel and has lunch with Paul Ryan, and suddenly, he's reaching out and there's all these efforts to have kumbaya. He's had two meals." [Video below the break. Audio here.]
CNN couldn't stop talking about former President Clinton's op-ed on Friday. Every hour between 5 a.m. and 3 p.m. ET, the network touted Clinton asking the Supreme Court to overturn the Defense of Marriage Act that he signed as president, spending over a half hour of coverage on it.
Anchor Don Lemon reported the op-ed four times between 9 and 11 a.m. ET. Anchor Ashleigh Banfield ran two segments on it during the 11 a..m. ET hour. Lemon, openly-gay, voiced his support: "I mean, when you sit right down and just look at it, it's really all about civil and equal rights, human rights. We're a country that treats everybody equal, I mean everyone should be treated equally under the Constitution." [Video below the break. Audio here.]
CNN harped on the controversy over Fox News head Roger Ailes calling President Obama "lazy" and Vice President Biden "dumb as an ashtray." The network covered it on five shows on Wednesday and Thursday, but three of the shows ignored that Ailes used Obama's own words.
In making the "lazy" remark, Ailes cited a 2011 interview with Barbara Walters where Obama said that "deep down, underneath all the work that I do, I think there's a laziness in me." Erin Burnett was the only CNN anchor to promptly give that context in her report; on Thursday's Starting Point, conservative panel member Will Cain first brought it up, and co-host John Berman affirmed it. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
CNN gave over eight times more coverage to Beyonce lip synching the national anthem than it did to President Obama's falsehood on the sequester last Friday.
After the President claimed in last Friday's presser that Capitol Hill janitors and police would receive a pay cut because of the sequester, CNN correspondent Dana Bash fact-checked it and found it not to be the case. Her report aired twice that day and two more times over last weekend. She covered the matter for 45 seconds in each report, so CNN's coverage totaled three minutes.
According to CNN, surrogacy deserves a fairytale ending. But when a surrogate mother refused to abort her baby against prospective parents’ wishes, the story transitioned into a “nightmare.”
A Connecticut couple offered their baby's surrogate mother, Crystal Kelley, $10,000 for an abortion when they discovered via an ultrasound that the baby suffered from disabilities such as a cleft lip and heart defects. Kelley refused their proposal despite legal pressure, and fled to Michigan where state law recognized her as the baby’s guardian.
The way CNN sees the Vatican hierarchy, one would think it's a repressive male-dominated cabal that women are morally obligated to challenge. CNN's Ben Wedeman aired another broadside against the church from the streets of Rome on Tuesday.
Wedeman stretched one comparison between Vatican City and Saudi Arabia – neither allow women's suffrage: "Vatican City joined Saudi Arabia as one of the few states left on earth where women have no vote." [Video below the break. Audio here.]
CNN's Dana Bash fact-checked President Obama's falsehood about the sequester on Friday, but the major networks didn't exactly follow CNN's lead in reporting the distortion that Capitol Hill janitors and police would receive a pay cut because of the sequester.
In his Friday press conference, Obama claimed, "They're going to have less pay, the [Capitol Hill] janitors, the security guards. They just got a pay cut." Shortly after that, CNN's Bash obtained from the Senate Sergeant-at-Arms that the workers would not receive a pay cut, just a limit on overtime pay. NBC ignored the distortion on its weekend newscasts, while CBS and ABC reported it one time each.
CNN's White House correspondent asked President Obama on Friday why he couldn't just force Congress to stick around until a deal is reached to prevent the sequester cuts. Obama responded that he wasn't a "dictator."
"To your question 'what could you do?' First of all, couldn't you just have them down here and refuse to let them leave the room until you have a deal?" CNN's Jessica Yellin teed up the President. Apparently for Yellin, "leadership" means taking dictatorial measures to have an elected Congress pass a bill. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
On CNN Wednesday, BuzzFeed sports editor Jack Moore called for a gay pro athlete to come out of the closet and be "a Jackie Robinson of this cause."
"It just shows that more than ever we need some major pro athlete to come out of the closet at the height – like while they're in the league," he ranted. "But we need a Jackie Robinson of this cause because we just need an example to show that, yeah, I can still play at the same high level," he added. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
After CNN's initial report on Pope Benedict's final papal audience, the first guest to appear on CNN Newsroom on Wednesday was a radical leftist nun who believes the upcoming papal election is "invalid" because no women are involved.
Sister Donna Quinn lashed out: "We women are calling this papal election invalid. It has to be declared fraudulent because it has no women included in the process. By that I mean there are no women on the ballot in the conclave, there are no women voters, there are no women in the whole process, so we're very distressed." No church representative appeared to challenge Quinn's views; only CNN's Vatican analyst John Allen was on the air with Quinn. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
On Sunday's Reliable Sources, guest David Zurawik mocked "out of town reporters" who met with the White House about sequestration and simply repeated the administration's talking points back to their local channels, "like an Obama commercial."
However, CNN displayed that same uncritical journalism over and over on the sequester. Obama administration officials freaked out about looming budget cuts to their respective agencies and CNN simply relayed the hype to its viewers, comparing the cuts to the asteroid and calling them a "man-made disaster." [Video below the break. Audio here.]
CNN's chief political analyst freaked out about the sequester cuts on Tuesday afternoon's Newsroom, calling them a "man-made disaster."
"It is a man-made disaster. Not a natural one," Borger insisted. She compared them to the massive snow storm currently hitting the Midwestern states: "And just watching those pictures of Erin in the snowstorm, I was thinking, it's like we know this huge storm is coming to the country, but nobody is buying a shovel." [Video below the break. Audio here.]
CNN's own legal analyst scoffed at CNN's notion that 75 Republicans supporting legal gay marriage is a "big turning point" for the party. Anchor Ashleigh Banfield did her best to drum up the matter on Tuesday, for the network that has repeatedly shown a bias favoring gay marriage.
"Next, a big turning point in the Republican party. 70 high profile Republicans just signed a brief supporting gay marriage," Banfield touted. "I really disagree with the premise that this is a lot of people," responded CNN's legal analyst Jeff Toobin. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
Responding to Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal (R) on Monday, CNN's chief business correspondent slammed GOP "weird math" and "balanced budget nonsense" on the sequestration and accused Jindal of being "misleading."
"And it's this weird math that the Republicans are using, that it's just three percent of the federal budget," Velshi ranted. "Except you can't touch entitlements. So it's three percent of a small part of the federal budget, which makes it a very big part of some major agencies," he insisted. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
Chicago hasn’t had a Republican mayor in over 80 years. Democrats have controlled the Illinois governor’s mansion and both houses of the legislature for more than a decade, with Democrats ruling the Illinois House for 28 of the last 30 years. No matter, Chicago violence is the fault of Republicans. We learned that this morning on CNN Newsroom when anchor Carol Costello asked her “Talk Back” guests about Retired Lt. General Russel Honore’s suggestion to use National Guard troops to curb murders in Chicago. Democratic strategist Robert Zimmerman astutely pinpointed the reason for Chicago’s carnage:
And let's be very clear about what's happening in Washington today and why it's undermining the city of Chicago, because there's a mindset now in our government, in Washington, from the Republican members of Congress, that sequestration is an acceptable way of doing business, that we can in fact engage in these massive irresponsible cuts that no one thinks is a logical approach to budgeting.
After hyping the "draconian" sequester cuts set to take place March 1, CNN kept up its frenzy on Tuesday afternoon by spreading government hysteria over the $85 billion spending reduction. Headlines sounded alarms like "Medicine, Food at Risk," "Travel Nightmare In the Making," and "U.S. justice system in jeopardy."
"President Obama is warning of dire consequences for all of us if lawmakers don't act quickly," The Situation Room host Wolf Blitzer channeled White House angst. "The President clearly wants all of us to be very, very worried about the budget axe that's about to fall," he hyped during the 6 p.m. ET hour. "The President has said it's an issue of national security," reported correspondent Joe Johns on cuts to the justice system. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
Even though the upcoming sequester cuts amount to only $85 billion, compared to $16 trillion of U.S. debt, CNN hyped the deleterious effects of the cuts to the economy by comparing them to the recent asteroid that just missed earth.
"Watch out. Like the asteroid headed to earth, they're coming. $86 billion in automatic budget cuts," anchor Carol Costello warned. And "draconian" was in the CNN talking points as Costello and her colleague Christine Romans repeatedly gave that label to the cuts. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
The same network that wondered if Sen. Rubio's sip of water was a "big deal" is now asking just why Republicans are "so fixated on Benghazi" when they asked Defense Secretary nominee Chuck Hagel about the Libya fiasco.
"This, despite testimony on Benghazi from General Petraeus, Hillary Clinton, Admiral Mike Mullen, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, General Martin Dempsey, among others. But it's not enough," an obviously flustered Carol Costello huffed. The CNN headline later flashed, "Why are Republicans so fixated on Benghazi?" [Video below the break. Audio here.]
On Monday night, CNN's Erin Burnett badgered the Catholic church to change its doctrine and accept birth control, gay marriage, and women priests. All day long on Monday, CNN asked if the church was going to change with the times but Burnett was blatant in her push for liberalization of doctrine.
"Isn't it time for the church, which is supposed to be an inclusive, generous, giving organization, to move ahead on gay rights?" she asked her guest a loaded question. When he answered no, she hit back, "Even if they [gay people] love each other, isn't the Catholic Church supposed to be about love?" [Video below the break. Audio here.]
CNN anchor Deb Feyerick asked Saturday afternoon if an approaching asteroid, which will pass by Earth on February 15, “is an example of, perhaps, global warming?”
Moments earlier, before an ad break, she segued from the Northeast blizzard to a segment with Bill Nye “the science guy,” by pointing to global warming: “Every time we see a storm like this lately, the first question to pop into a lot of people’s minds is whether or not global warming is to blame? I’ll talk to Bill Nye, ‘the science guy,’ about devastating storms and climate change.”
Only about five percent of Americans identify as atheists, but CNN played up the "very activist atheist movement" and touted celebrity atheists like Julianne Moore and Mark Zuckerberg, on Thursday.
"Various surveys put the number of atheists in America around five percent. And according to the Pew study in 2012, one in five people claim they have no religious affiliation at all," anchor Carol Costello noted. She didn't mention that having no religious affiliation might not even be close to atheism.
CNN legal analyst Sunny Hostin compared the push for the Boy Scouts to accept gays to the struggle over interracial marriage and same-sex marriage. She slammed any ban on gay scouts, local or national, as "discrimination," on Tuesday afternoon's Newsroom.
"They've been arguing that, Brooke, for years. If you let a black person marry a white person society will end. If you let gay and lesbian couples marry, society will end. That's an argument that has failed time and time again. And so to argue that we should discriminate because you want the Boy Scouts of America to survive is just a bunch of nonsense," Hostin told anchor Brooke Baldwin. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
CNN's message to the Boy Scouts is this: "the world" is becoming more accepting of same-sex marriage, and the Scouts should get with the times by accepting openly gay leaders. Anchor Carol Costello made that clear on Tuesday morning's Newsroom.
"And like it or not, children are exposed to gay people. Ever watch 'Modern Family' or 'Ellen' or hear NFL players speak out for same-sex marriage? The world is changing. And the question now: will the Boy Scouts change with it?" Costello argued. Of course, CNN helps facilitate that "change" by giving NFL players -- who wish to "harness this Super Bowl media" to push for "marriage equality" -- air time to push for same-sex marriage unopposed. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
CNN thinks the Super Bowl has become "a platform for the culture wars," but they are using that "platform" to support causes like gay marriage.
The morning after the Super Bowl, CNN's openly-gay anchor Don Lemon interviewed gay rights activist and Baltimore Ravens linebacker Brendon Ayanbadejo and thanked him for his work. No guest from the other side was brought on.
On Tuesday's Starting Point, CNN's David Gergen smiled on Hillary Clinton's "wonderful farewell" at the State Department and touted her "very powerful position" for a 2016 presidential run. As CNN noted, Gergen once worked as an adviser to President Clinton.
When asked if anything from Clinton's term as Secretary of State would come back to haunt her as a presidential candidate, Gergen replied "I don't think so. The Benghazi affair, I think, will long be forgotten unless there's some smoking gun we have no idea about." [Video below the break. Audio here.]
CNN joined the networks in giving outgoing Secretary of State Hillary Clinton a cushy send-off after Clinton's syrupy 60 Minutes interview alongside President Obama. The network gushed over the "chummy" affection between the "political superstars" on Monday morning.
"Well, it's the exit interview everybody is talking about," hyped anchor Soledad O'Brien. "Hillary Clinton, the President, sitting down together, laughing, chummy, chummy," she added. "They really seem to really like each other," said correspondent Brianna Keilar. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
The producer of CNN's Belief Blog lauded President Obama as "exceptional" and a "religious pioneer" for supporting same-sex marriage and hosting his inaugural prayer service at National Cathedral.
"Well, I think it's part of what makes Obama exceptional. We think of him as a racial pioneer, the first African-American president, but I think he's also a religious pioneer," John Blake said of the choice of National Cathedral, which made headlines for announcing it will conduct same-sex marriage ceremonies. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
Reporting on the 40th anniversary of Roe v. Wade on Tuesday, CNN's Carol Costello pelted a pro-life guest with liberal talking points while chiding the president of pro-choice NARAL for not doing enough for the pro-choice movement.
For example, Costello began her interview with pro-life ethicist Pia de Solenni by citing poll numbers favorable to abortion rights activists. In contrast, she greeted NARAL president Nancy Keenan with this bland observation: "You know, it's interesting, you wanted us to refer to your organization as Pro-Choice America. And I have read numerous articles that your organization doesn't like the term 'pro-choice' any longer."
It turns out that the Romney campaign was right to claim that Fiat, who owns Chrysler, would be making Jeeps in China instead of America, even though the media disparaged that case at the time with PolitiFact going so far as to declare the ad "Lie of the Year." According to PolitiFact, the campaign falsely implied the jobs would be outsourced, among other claims.
As Reuters reported yesterday, "Fiat (FIA.MI) and its U.S. unit Chrysler expect to roll out at least 100,000 Jeeps in China when production starts in 2014 as they seek to catch up with rivals in the world's biggest car market."
CNN's Carol Costello scolded Whole Foods CEO John Mackey for calling ObamaCare "fascism" on Friday. She also questioned why he was entering the ObamaCare debate at all and lectured him that many of his customers would disagree with his opposition to ObamaCare.
"And you realize when you say 'fascism' it brings up Nazi Germany and all sorts of things. And we really want that kind language out of our public forum at the moment, don't we?" Costello admonished Mackey. [Video below the break. Audio here.]