On Thursday morning's New Day, CNN reported the newest development in the IRS scandal that the broadcast networks ignored: the former IRS chief contacting the Justice Department about criminal investigations of tax-exempt groups.
"The activist group Judicial Watch has released e-mails that show the agency in talks with the Justice Department to investigate some tax exempt organizations for possible fraud," reported CNN's John Berman. He added that according to the e-mails, "criminal investigations" were a possibility before the IRS targeting scandal broke last year.
CNN's Chris Cuomo tried to get former Assistant Secretary of State Jamie Rubin to defend President Obama's response to Russia's aggression in Ukraine during a segment on Wednesday's New Day. Cuomo cited how Russian President Vladimir Putin "did this in Georgia.....under President Bush" in 2008, and wondered, "Is it fair to look at this situation and say, the weakness or perception of weakness of President Obama has given a window of opportunity to Putin?"
The anchor didn't identify Rubin as either a former Clinton administration official or as the husband of CNN personality Christiane Amanpour. Interestingly, the State Department veteran didn't give Cuomo the response he was looking for: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
On Tuesday's New Day, CNN's John King hyped the Congressional Budget Office's projection about ObamaCare – that "yes, ObamaCare is expensive, but less expensive than they thought – by about $104 billion over 10 years. That's a decent junk of change." King asserted that the health care issue is "the big domestic challenge for the President and for Democrats this election year: that is...trying to defend it – you could say now, maybe, bragging – about ObamaCare."
The journalist then expressed his bewilderment that Democrats weren't playing up this CBO projection: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
Democratic Congressman Steve Israel, Chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, charged on Sunday that some of his GOP colleagues, as well as a "significant extent" of the GOP base, are racist, yet none of the broadcast networks picked it up on Monday evening.
On Sunday's State of the Union, CNN host Candy Crowley played a clip of House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi accusing GOP obstruction of the immigration bill as partly based on race. She asked Israel if he thought Republicans on Capitol Hill were racist. "Not all of them, no, of course not," he replied, before attacking the GOP base. [Video below the break.]
Sarah Silverman's website is promoting an interview Sarah and her sister the rabbi, Susan Silverman, gave to CNN contributor (and former Bush staffer) Margaret Hoover at The Daily Beast's Women of the World summit after they spoke on April 4.
Hoover encouraged Rabbi Susan to explain again how Sarah Silverman preaches and is "in the line of the biblical prophets...but they were also less effective." (Video below)
On Friday's New Day, the Washington Post's Nia-Malika Henderson said outgoing HHS secretary Kathleen Sebelius would be "coach of the year" if she were a basketball coach.
"I do think if she were a basketball coach, right, she would probably be coach of the year, right? Because she was able to turn this thing around, had good news yesterday that 7.5 million people, you know, signed up for this thing," Henderson stated on CNN. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
On Tuesday's New Day, CNN's John King targeted President Obama and his administration for their "textbook case...of do as I say, not as I do" on the issue of equal pay for women. After playing a clip of Press Secretary Jay Carney playing up how the 88 cents on the dollar women in the White House apparently make compared to men is "better than the national average," King quipped, "I guess the coach would say, is that the best you got?"
The journalist also spotlighted two past studies involving the White House and congressional payroll at the time Mr. Obama was serving as a senator from Illinois, and pointed out the bad optics of the situation: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
For the second time in five years, Fort Hood was the site of a shooting by a rogue member of the military. While the shooting, which occurred during the afternoon of Wednesday April 2, had fewer victims than the one five years ago, CNN predictably used the tragedy to push for greater gun control in America.
After Piers Morgan's Twitter tirade on Wednesday night, CNN’s Chris Cuomo wondered despite the shooter having mental health issues, why he was “Still able to walk into a private store and get this semi-automatic handgun that he winds up using, not a military issued weapon, his own. Don't you think that's something that needs to be addressed in terms of who's abled to get these conceal carry permits and weapons?” [See video below.]
On Wednesday's CNN Newsroom, Carol Costello decried the Supreme Court's latest decision underlining that political donations are a form of free speech: "You know, these rulings continue to surprise me – only because so many Americans are concerned about the money factor...They think it's a real problem, and these kinds of rulings seem to only exacerbate those problems."
Costello brought on liberal CNN legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin for his take on the ruling, and asked, "Doesn't that give wealthy donors a big advantage?" Toobin twice emphasize the left-of-center opposition to this decision and the previous Citizen United decision in 2010: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
It helps to be in the White House when a CNN host professes himself to be "card-carrying member" of the administration's health care law, or when the enrollment numbers are cast as a "major victory."
New CNN host Michael Smerconish touted the benefits of ObamaCare on Tuesday night, confessing he was a "card-carrying member of ObamaCare" and calling the enrollment numbers "quite an achievement." OutFront host Erin Burnett went even further, saying the enrollment was a "major victory." [Video below the break. Audio here.]
Jim Acosta emulated a P.R. flack for the Obama administration on Tuesday's CNN Newsroom, as he hyped how the White House is "on track to hit seven million signing up" for ObamaCare. Acosta gushed that "if ObamaCare were a patient, this would be a pretty miraculous recovery, when you consider...that disastrous rollout in October and November."
The correspondent later touted the development as "pretty big news over here at the White House. They're reacting with a lot of glee and happiness, I can tell you." Acosta and anchor Carol Costello also credited the President's Internet video with comedian Zach Galifianakis for part of ObamaCare's apparent success: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
Piers Morgan got in one last word in favor of gun control during the final episode of his CNN program on Friday, and called for the complete disarmament of the American citizenry: "As my brother, a British army colonel, says, 'You always want an American next to you in a trench when the going gets tough.' But that's where, I think, guns belong...in the hands of highly-trained men and women fighting for democracy and freedom, not in the hands of civilians."
Morgan blasted the NRA by name and politicians for standing in the way of his pet cause: "The gun lobby in America, lead by the NRA, has bullied this nation's politicians into cowardly, supine silence." He cited Winston Churchill for inspiring his stand, and even claimed that his campaign was pro-American: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
[Update, April 7, 10:55 am: the original blog entry inaccurately corrected Phillips for claiming that her husbands, correspondent John Roberts, has the last name "Robertson." In reality, Roberts' legal last name is indeed Robertson. The text below has been corrected to reflect that fact.]
CNN'S Kyra Phillips zeroed on the controversy surrounding Phil Robertson's remarks about homosexuality on Wednesday's New Day, as she interviewed Robertson's son Willie Robertson and his wife, Korie. Phillips played up the "firestorm" after the Duck Dynasty star's interview with GQ, and asked his son, "Is that what you believe?"
However, the correspondent went on to compliment Willie Robertson and his family for how well they apparently have raised their children: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
ABC, CNN, MSNBC and PBS on Wednesday and Thursday all covered the "shocking" corruption involving the Democratic mayor of Charlotte, North Carolina. Yet, while talking about the tens of thousands of dollars in bribes he sought, none of these networks identified Patrick Cannon's political party. Only a Fox News host referred to him as a Democrat.
On ABC's Good Morning America, Amy Robach asserted, "Well, the mayor of Charlotte, North Carolina has resigned after being arrested during an FBI sting." On CNN's New Day, Christine Romans informed that undercover FBI agents "got the mayor to take almost $50,000 in bribes in exchange for favorable treatment by the city." In contrast, Fox News's Jamie Colby revealed, "There's another Democrat in trouble over accusations of corruption." [See video below. MP3 audio here.]
On Monday's New Day, CNN's John King refreshingly spotlighted one of President Obama's key campaign promises from 2008 about foreign policy during a discussion about how to respond to Russia's aggression in Crimea. King wondered if "a President who came to office saying he could unite the world and would have better international diplomacy than George W. Bush – at least on this one, doesn't have any good options."
The anchor was responding to a comment from Margaret Talev of Bloomberg News, who noted how "the White House doesn't really want to give a whole lot of military assistance here, and they don't think that...most of Europe is going to go along with significant sanctions." [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
This week marks the end of Piers Morgan’s show on CNN and his run has been full of effusive praise for liberals and damnation of conservatives. Even before Morgan began his show, back in 2010, he tipped his hand in which ideological direction he wanted to take the show when he revealed who he most wanted to interview: “I’d love to do President Obama. I like what he’s done for the reputation of America abroad, which I’m not sure many Americans fully understand.”
In contrast, Morgan viciously attacked gun rights advocates and Tea Party activists, while giving better treatment to Iranian dictator Mahmoud Ahmadinejad who he once asked how many times he had “been properly in love?” [video countdown after the jump]
The Russians are firing back at CNN anchor Christiane Amanpour for some Thursday remarks on her CNN International show about Vitaly Churkin, Russia’s ambassador to the United Nations. Amanpour mocked his daughter for working as a journalist for Russia Today in New York, and covering her father.
Churkin sent a letter to Amanpour pointing out that if that’s a familial conflict, then what about her “courtship” and marriage to former State Department spokesman Jamie Rubin? They were married in 1998 right in the middle of his Clinton administration service, where he was touted as Madeleine Albright's right-hand man.
None of the network evening news casts have yet mentioned President Obama’s delay of the individual mandate for anyone claiming "hardship," which reportedly would exempt millions from having to purchase health insurance for two more years.
As insurance industry expert Bob Laszewski put it to CNBC’s Larry Kudlow on Thursday, Obama “essentially said if you find health insurance unaffordable, you're not going to be mandated to buy it.” And as the Wall Street Journalreported last week, ObamaCare’s newest mandate delay allows for just that:
In a refreshing change of pace, CNN's John King skeptically wondered on Tuesday's New Day about the White House touting the five million "enrollments" in ObamaCare: "They wanted to get the seven million by March 31 – unlikely they'll get there....How important are the next couple of weeks, and...if they get to six, can they spin that as a success, or is this baked in as a failure?"
King later pointed out that "even if they get some policy numbers that point them toward success – maybe not where they wanted to get, but close to that – can they change the political dynamic out in the country? Because if you go to these key states, it seems like ObamaCare is still a liability." Despite this, New Day anchor John Berman still trumpeted the five million figure: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
As of Monday evening, ABC, CBS, and NBC's morning and evening newscasts have yet to cover North Korea's firing of 25 short-range missiles into the Sea of Japan on Sunday. NBCNews.com did post an unsigned article from Reuters on Sunday about how the "missiles flew for 45 miles before splashing into the sea," and ABC News' website went with AP's write-up on the development, but neither outlet devoted any air time to the story.
By contrast, CNN's New Day on Monday devoted a 20-second news brief to the Obama administration's reaction to this latest instance of North Korean sabre-rattling: [video below the jump]
[Update, 3:45 pm Eastern: Cuomo angrily responds to NewsBusters; see below.]
On Wednesday's New Day, CNN's Chris Cuomo played up how Florida Republican David Jolly's campaign played The Price Is Right theme music at his victory rally on Tuesday, and remarked that its use was somehow a perfect sign of the influence of big money in political races: "What a metaphor for what politics has become – that they are playing the theme song of The Price Is Right when they celebrate a victory, because it's about the money! It makes me sick."
What Cuomo didn't realize is that the former host of The Price Is Right, Bob Barker, endorsed Jolly. NewsBusters executive editor Tim Graham noted NPR's reporting on Barker's endorsement in a December 2013 item: [MP3 audio available here; video of Cuomo below the jump]
Controversial comedian Chelsea Handler stopped by CNN’s Piers Morgan Live last night and had some harsh words for the outgoing CNN host.
Appearing as his guest on Monday March 11, Handler slammed the provocative Morgan’s interviewing skills and claimed that “I have to come here and tolerate this nonsense and then I have to ...You can't even pay attention for 60 seconds. You're a terrible interviewer.” [See video below.]
On Friday's This Hour, CNN's John Berman bemoaned how medical marijuana is still illegal in many jurisdictions, and hinted that executive action needed be taken to fix this situation. After noting that "one of the problems right now is the federal law," Berman asked, "Can't they change this? Can't a stroke of the pen change this problem?"
Doctor Sanjay Gupta also played up how people with chronic illnesses are affected by this federal regulation, and underlined its apparent damaging impact: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
CNN anchor John Berman asked medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta Friday if just a "stroke of the pen" could "change this problem" and legalize medical marijuana.
"Can't they change this? Can't a stroke of the pen change this problem?" Berman asked of the government. Dr. Gupta, a medical marijuana advocate, agreed: "you say the same thing that I do. This is baffling to me." [Video below the break. Audio here.]
On Thursday's OutFront, CNN's Erin Burnett teed up Democrat Rep. Elijah Cummings to call for Rep. Darrell Issa's ouster as chairman of the House Oversight Committee.
After a hearing where former IRS chief Lois Lerner dodged questions on the scandal she is at the center of, CNN joined NBC in focusing its outrage instead on Issa, who cut Cummings' microphone when the latter began railing against the proceeding. Burnett called that a "new low" for Congress on Wednesday, and then on Thursday she relayed the call for Issa's removal from the Congressional Black Caucus. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
Sunny Hostin blasted an Indiana mall's ban of people wearing raised hoodies on Thursday's New Day: "This is...akin, in my view...to 'stop and frisk' – to the pretext of 'stop and frisk' – and I think many courts have found that this type of behavior is unacceptable, and downright unconstitutional."
The CNN legal analyst also contended that "'hoodie' is code for 'thug' in many places," and later claimed that "to identify just hoodies in my view...it's very, very clear what we're talking about here. We're talking about racial profiling. It's code for racial profiling." [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
In an obvious back-handed compliment, Rachel Maddow started her eponymous Tuesday night program on MSNBC by supposedly praising the Cable News Network, which she said “once upon a time” was the “only cable news network, and they really did have a singular role in keeping people informed.”
However, while the network once had a reputation for providing information “about what was going on, not only around the country, but around the world” in the 1990s, she claimed “CNN today is not what it used to be.”
On Wednesday, CNN's Daniel Burke gave liberal-tinged spin/extrapolation about Pope Francis's answer to an Italian newspaper's question about secular civil unions. Burke asserted in a CNN.com article that the pontiff "reaffirmed the Catholic Church's opposition to gay marriage...but suggested in a newspaper interview that it could support some types of civil unions."
However, the journalist left out that despite the Bishop of Rome's generalized answer, he concretely opposed a proposed civil unions bill in Malta near the end of 2013. More recently, the Pope's spokesman lashed out at the Italian media in January 2014 for spinning a separate remark from the native of Argentina as "an opening to legal provision for civil unions for gay couples, a subject of debate in Italy."
CNN's Chris Cuomo ran to President Obama's defense on Tuesday's New Day, after former Senator Jim DeMint criticized the White House's handling of Russia's invasion of Ukraine: "Isn't the notion that only might can make right tired? The American people do not have appetite for more military action, and everyone is condemning Putin...Isn't this proof that President Obama's tactic of let's try to talk; let's try to be flexible – not everything is about having the biggest muscles – may be the way the world wants to proceed?"
Cuomo also ripped the GOP for standing in the way of passing the President's agenda through Congress: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]