For the second straight day, CNN blew the whistle on a nasty and misleading Obama super PAC ad that ABC, CBS, and NBC entirely ignored as of Wednesday night. CNN hammered the ad, which links Mitt Romney to a woman's death from cancer, each hour from 6 p.m. through 10 p.m. and twice grilled the man responsible for the ad, Bill Burton of Priorities USA.
"I think it is deliberately mendacious," stated CNN's Piers Morgan on Wednesday. "It is a deliberate attempt to lie and smear about Mitt Romney. And I find it contemptible. I mean I'm really appalled." The three networks showed no such disdain for the ad which will air in battleground states, because they failed to even mention it on Tuesday and Wednesday. [Video coming soon.]
“Harry Reid is disgrace. But you expect this from Harry Reid,” The Weekly Standard’s Stephen Hayes zinged on FNC’s Special Report Friday night before turning his ire on a certain Washington, DC-based anchor for CNN for advancing Reid’s baseless allegation that Mitt Romney didn’t pay any income tax for ten years.
“The disappointing cohort in this, to me, is journalists,” Hayes contended as he recalled how “I saw another network anchor ask a Romney supporter about this accusation, saying Harry Reid is a really honorable man.”
CNN brags of being a centrist news network in between Fox News and MSNBC, but how serious and non-partisan can it be when hosting liberal comics to discuss the serious issues of the day?
On Tuesday's The Situation Room, CNN's Joe Johns goaded Obama fund raiser Will Ferrell and liberal comedian Zach Galifianakis to preach campaign finance reform. "There seem to be a little bit of takeouts on the Koch brothers, the conservative brothers who have done so much funding of politics. Talk to us a little bit about the message," Johns asked. [Video below the break.]
CNN's Wolf Blizer took a key Obama supporter to task on Wednesday over Vice President Biden's use of an anonymous quote to slam Mitt Romney. The Romney campaign had denied saying the racially-charged remark.
"[W]hy would a sitting vice president issue this condemnation of Mitt Romney and his campaign based on a British newspaper with some anonymous quote?" Blitzer asked on Wednesday's The Situation Room.
Other CNN reporters did not share Blitzer's skepticism, though, as five stories on the matter aired on Wednesday evening and Thursday morning with none of them challenging the appropriateness of Biden's remark. The story aired even though correspondent Jim Acosta admitted that the source for the alleged Romney adviser quote could not be independently confirmed. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
Four days after President Obama insulted job creators by asserting "If you've got a business, you didn't build that; somebody else made that happen," CNN finally reported the controversial remarks, and only once the Romney campaign featured them in a campaign attack.
In contrast, when Romney surrogate John Sununu said on Tuesday morning that he wished "this President would learn how to be an American," it only took CNN a few hours to jump on the remarks. The network mentioned them every hour between 1 p.m. and 6 p.m. and anchor Wolf Blitzer even brought Sununu on for an interview to explain himself.
Media critic Howard Kurtz warned CNN on Friday that "to many people" it looks like the media has a massive double standard in its campaign coverage of Mitt Romney and Barack Obama.
"[W]hen you combine all the stories, all the airtime, all the column inches, it looks to many people, I'll just say this bluntly, like the press is giving much more aggressive scrutiny to Romney and his background than it ever gave to Barack Obama," Kurtz told CNN's Wolf Blitzer. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
CNN's Jim Acosta bragged that his network does not call the Affordable Care Act "ObamaCare," a term he said Republicans prefer. However, CNN has repeatedly referred to the law as "ObamaCare" in its reporting.
"He [Romney] used the term 'ObamaCare,' which by the way, that's fine in Republican circles, but there are a lot of Democrats who sort of bristle at using the term 'ObamaCare'," Acosta explained on Wednesday after Mitt Romney used the term when addressing the Democratic-friendly NAACP. "We at CNN use the term 'the President's health care law,' at least in our news reporting," Acosta boasted. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
Is CNN campaigning for Rep. Joe Walsh's Democratic opponent? In a heated exchange with Walsh on Thursday, anchor Ashleigh Banfield rattled off a list of opponent Tammy Duckworth's accomplishments and admitted "she should get elected" if voters are pleased with her resume.
CNN gave much softer treatment to Duckworth on Friday. Host Wolf Blitzer did press her about controversial statements she has made, but also tossed her softball questions and gave her an opportunity to explain her stances on issues that matter to voters -- an opportunity CNN did not give Walsh.
Blitzer asked her softballs like "Do you have a problem that he [Walsh] never served in the military?" after Walsh had accused her of incessantly touting her own military service. [Video below the break.]
On Tuesday, New York’s Daily News carried the headline “Bill O’Reilly admits he ‘may be an idiot’ for wrongly predicting Supreme Court’s health care decision.” Meena Hart Duerson began with snark: “Bill O'Reilly and his critics may finally have something to agree on: the talk show host admitted Monday he ‘may be an idiot’ for wrongly predicting the Supreme Court’s decision on Obamacare.”
But O’Reilly’s guess on March 26 – 5 to 4 to overturn – was exactly where many pundits would have placed their bets. Has the Daily News ever noticed CNN legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin predicting it might have gone eight to one in Obama’s favor on The Situation Room March 23, with even Scalia and Alito joining with Kennedy and Roberts in siding with Obama? No.
The day before the Supreme Court's decision on ObamaCare, CNN is already giving credibility to the Democrats' spin if they lose the case – conservative judicial activism.
"[W]hen you combine the two biggest decisions of the Roberts court, Citizens United and health care – if they lose health care – that is a pretty clear Democratic, capital 'D,' indictment of the Supreme Court," insisted CNN's senior legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin on Wednesday's The Situation Room. [Video coming soon. Audio here.]
CNN was called the 'Clinton News Network' during the 90s for a reason. After letting Bill Clinton get away with his ridiculous excuse for supporting a temporary extension of the Bush tax cuts, Wolf Blitzer kissed up to the former president by fawning over his daughter Chelsea in the Thursday interview.
And Blitzer had a sugary introduction ready. "[W]hen we spoke about the President's daughter, Chelsea, his face lit up with pride," Blitzer cooed. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
Back in the '90s, many people called CNN the "Clinton News Network" because it was so obviously partial to the Democratic President from Arkansas.
Wolf Blitzer perfectly exemplified why this was the case Thursday when in an interview with former President Bill Clinton, he shamefully allowed his guest to absurdly claim that prior to Tuesday's controversial interview with CNBC's Maria Bartiromo, he thought the Bush tax cuts expired before Election Day (video follows with transcribed highlights and commentary):
With campaign 2012 in full swing, CNN deemed it appropriate to talk about elevators in the Massachusetts Statehouse on Wednesday's The Situation Room.
To catch a glimpse of what current state legislators thought of then-Governor Mitt Romney, CNN correspondent Jim Acosta talked to only one Republican and three Democrats. Out of all the complaints they could have aired, the Democrats whined about Romney and his staff reserving one of the elevators entirely to themselves. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
The media's crush on Bill Clinton has only grown stronger since he left office, and CNN renewed its affection for the former president on Tuesday by airing over four minutes of him introducing President Obama at a Democratic fund raiser.
Fox News caught some flack for producing and airing a four-minute anti-Obama video – not that NBC and MSNBC haven't done the same thing to Romney – but CNN pulled a similar move in not producing, but still airing, what amounted to Obama campaign propaganda. And this is not the first time this has happened on CNN's The Situation Room. [Video below the break.]
CNN jumped all over Donald Trump's "birther" remarks on Tuesday as Trump hosted a fund raiser for Mitt Romney. CNN ran the story almost every single hour on Tuesday evening and Wednesday morning, hyping Romney's message getting "Trumped" by his supporter's controversial statements.
In contrast, CNN showed no initial scrutiny of foul-mouthed comedian Bill Maher's $1 million donation to a pro-Obama Super PAC in February. Maher is infamous for his vile and disgusting insults of conservative women, but when he announced the donation CNN simply reported it without any hint of controversy.
CNN's Dana Bash reported Friday on the irony of President Obama hitting Mitt Romney's connections to Bain Capital when he himself has received donations from Bain employees. CNN has highlighted Obama's hypocrisy on this matter before, but this specific story has certainly not received much air-time – if any at all – in the last two weeks.
"But isn't it hypocritical for the Obama campaign to keep money from employees of a company it goes after as job-killers?" correspondent Dana Bash asked during the segment. Yet this story of Obama's clear hypocrisy has certainly not received the attention it merits on CNN. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
Apparently at CNN, the phrase "Republicans are the problem" is not challenged, but encouraged. On Thursday's The Situation Room, lame-duck host Wolf Blitzer simply tossed softballs to GOP-bashing Norm Ornstein, who had hit the party before as "extreme" and "unmoved by conventional understanding of facts, evidence, and science."
Ironically, Blitzer was three weeks behind schedule as Ornstein and co-author Thomas Mann penned their critical Washington Post op-ed in late April and were welcome guests on NPR and PBS shortly after. Could he possibly have responded to Media Matters slapping the media the other day for ignoring the two "well-respected, centrist political commentators"?
A new Obama campaign ad – which CNN showed a clip from on Monday – features former steelworkers attacking Mitt Romney and his leadership of Bain Capital. Yet this January CNN piece on Bain Capital's ventures in South Carolina provided the same critical aura of "bad memories" and "bitterness" toward the company from South Carolina steelworkers.
United Steelworkers is one of the heavy hitters of Democratic donors, and yet CNN featured the local Steelworkers president bashing Bain Capital all through the piece without any clarification on the political position of the Steelworkers. The president took a parting shot at Romney for being "very responsible" for Bain's business practices at the steel mill.
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?"
When a lone attendee at a Mitt Romney rally said President Obama should be tried for treason, Romney ignored and later disagreed with the statement. CNN correspondent Jim Acosta played up the incident big time on Tuesday's The Situation Room, using it as an example of the Romney campaign being "straight off script."
Of course, CNN is helping the Romney campaign to be "off script" by hammering them for a non-story. "I don't correct all the questions that get asked at me," Romney explained to a reporter after the event, and added that he "obviously" didn't agree with the woman. However, this prompt correction was not enough for Acosta, who insisted the campaign had veered off course. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
A liberal protest that CNN.com said contained "about 10 people" still merited inclusion in CNN correspondent Jim Acosta's report on Wednesday's The Situation Room. Of course, Acosta made no mention of the smallness or brevity of the protest -- the chant of "No Swiss Mitt" lasted under five minutes.
Acosta did tout that Democrats were "hounding" Romney to keep him "back on his heels." As an example of their strategy, he mentioned the protesters with a clip of them chanting "No Swiss Mitt." [Video below the break. Audio here.]
As NewsBusters reported Sunday, MSNBC's Rachel Maddow and Republican strategist Alex Castellanos got into quite a heated debate about the gender wage gap on NBC's Meet the Press.
CNN's Situation Room decided to find out who was right about this controversial issue Monday, and despite going to great lengths to side with Maddow, correspondent Lisa Sylvester grudgingly admitted at the very end of the segment, "It's about 5 cents of a difference, but it still is there, it's still real, and the truth is, men make more than women" (video follows courtesy Mediaite with transcript and commentary):
After saying Ann Romney had never worked a day in her life, Democratic activist Hilary Rosen was trying to spin her way out of the firestorm over her comments. CNN's Wolf Blitzer would have none of it on Thursday's The Situation Room as he reprimanded her, forced her to apologize, and asked her how it felt to be thrown "under the bus" by Democratic allies.
Blitzer grilled Rosen for upwards of ten minutes and ripped her "awful way of saying" what she intended to say about Romney. He then made her "look into the camera" and talk to Romney, and after she dodged an apology a deadly serious Blitzer called her out on it. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
On Wednesday's The Situation Room, CNN used a slanted PolitiFact report to dismiss Mitt Romney's claim that "women account for 92.3 percent of the jobs lost under President Obama." CNN correspondent Jim Acosta aired a clip of Romney making the claim before adding that "the watchdog website PolitiFact rates that claim as 'Mostly False'."
PolitiFact even admitted that the campaign's numbers were "accurate," but added that "their reading of them isn't." According to numbers from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the Romney campaign's claim is indeed factually correct.
CNN continued to hype the possible negative implications of Mitt Romney's "rich guy image" on Monday evening, even though a new poll reports 71 percent of Americans said Romney's wealth is "not a major factor" in their presidential decision.
The network blared such headlines as "Is his [Romney's] big fortune a big political liability?" and "Wealth Will Be an Issue in 2012." CNN correspondent Joe Johns ran yet another segment on the possibility that Romney's wealthy image could hurt him in the November elections. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
For the second straight day on Thursday, CNN emphasized Mitt Romney's wealth as a possible turn-off to voters. Correspondent Joe Johns aired a segment on Thursday's The Situation Room about "Mitt Romney-isms," or Romney's references to his own wealth and beliefs that seem to "hit the wrong note" for a presidential candidate.
"Mitt Romney the millionaire may still have some problems with the average voter, because of his tone-deaf references to his personal wealth," Gloria Borger introduced Johns' Thursday story. On the previous day, Johns had authored a story about Romney's expensive car elevator at his California mansion. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
If the Supreme Court upheld ObamaCare, would it really be by an eight-to-one margin? CNN's senior legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin said it's possible, expressing more confidence in that prediction than the common analysis that the Court is evenly split on the issue with Justice Anthony Kennedy as the tiebreaking vote.
Toobin's analysis echoes the overwhelmingly positive liberal meme that ObamaCare will be upheld by a wide margin. He had already knocked the opposition case as "really weak." [Video below the break.]
CNN's Wolf Blitzer once again aired Obama campaign propaganda by playing a clip of Bill Clinton praising the President, from an Obama campaign film to be released soon. Last Thursday Blitzer had aired two whole minutes of footage from the film's trailer, and he referred back to the film on Monday afternoon's The Situation Room.
Blitzer asked if Clinton stumping for Obama in swing states wouldn't "dramatically" aid the President. Of course, what also wouldn't hurt the President is the free advertising he receives by CNN airing his re-election message. [Video below the break.]
The Obama 2012 campaign didn't even have to pay CNN for helping get its re-election message out on Thursday's The Situation Room. CNN aired two uninterrupted minutes of a trailer for a 17-minute Obama campaign film to be released in the future.
And after the two-minute clip played, CNN saved the Republican criticism for last. Host Wolf Blitzer's first question after the video had to do with the trailer's opening line delivered by actor Tom Hanks. [Video below the break.]