CNN's Jim Acosta on Tuesday's Situation Room asked what many will think was a truly offensive question.
"If you were to somehow beat the first African-American president, what would you say to the black community to assure them that you would be their president also?" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
CNN's Gloria Borger provided the Obama campaign spin on Tuesday afternoon, excusing the President's choice to not meet privately with any foreign leaders at this week's UN General Assembly. This despite the previous two presidents having met with world leaders at the UN during a campaign year.
"This is kind of a 'don't rock the boat' strategy. I think there's a sense that no good can come of any controversy right now," Borger explained the President's decision. However, even anchor Wolf Blitzer called it "probably a missed opportunity" for Obama, and reporter John King said even some Democrats questioned it. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
Who needs campaign staff when you have CNN to tout your "very, very damaging" attack ad? Host Piers Morgan gave President Obama some free publicity Tuesday night while CNN kept the anti-Romney media firestorm raging.
"I'm going to play a new Obama ad which basically sums up how he's going to attack him [Romney]. And it's very, very damaging. Watch this," Morgan told his guests, after he hyped Romney's "monumental gaffe" about the 47 percent of Americans paying no income taxes. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
In an obvious contrast between the two presidential campaigns, CNN's Jim Acosta highlighted both Mitt Romney's frivolous talk show interview and his campaign's "sharpened rhetoric" on Friday and pitted them against President Obama giving a solemn tribute to the slain diplomats from Libya.
Acosta did note Romney's moment of silence for the diplomats at his campaign rally, but cast that as a "brief pause in his campaign's sharpened rhetoric." The Obama camp's Twitter account was active both shortly before and after the ceremony for the diplomats, but CNN focused instead on Romney's "day of mixed messages." [Video below the break. Audio here.]
Wolf Blitzer pressed Florida's GOP attorney general on Monday about the party platform's opposition to abortion in all cases, asking her if it was the "problem" Republicans had with women.
"Is that the problem that he has – that Romney, and Republicans for that matter, have with women?" Blitzer asked after reading the section of the GOP platform supporting a human life amendment to the Constitution. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
Instead of informing the public about Mitt Romney's energy plan unveiled on Thursday, CNN harped on a "distraction" in the form of Bain Capital documents released by the website Gawker.
Even an article on CNNMoney.com called the Bain files "worthless," and CNN reporters questioned the significance of the document dump, but correspondent Jim Acosta talked about it anyway on Thursday's The Situation Room, as a "headache" for Romney.
CNN is harping on the "partisan" connections of a group of military veterans criticizing President Obama, likening it to Swift Boat, yet it has helped further liberal partisan attacks in the past through its own biased coverage.
"A new group of veterans, including former Navy SEALs, accuses President Obama of taking too much credit for the killing of Osama bin Laden. The group says it's nonpartisan. But a CNN investigation finds it has close links to the Republican Party," reported Joe Johns on Thursday's The Situation Room.
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):