On Friday's Situation Room, CNN commentator Jack Cafferty returned to slamming President Obama and Congress on their inaction in enforcing the immigration laws of the United States. Cafferty also singled out Democratic Senator Charles Schumer for his "great chutzpah" in asking Arizona to delay the implementation of its new anti-illegal immigration law.
The CNN personality first stated during his 5 pm Eastern hour commentary that "the federal government...is trying to play catch-up with the State of Arizona when it comes to immigration reform. President Obama is calling on Congress to start work this year on comprehensive immigration reform legislation. The translation is, nothing will get done this year."
Cafferty continued by focusing his criticism on Obama specifically:
For the second time in three days CNN's Jack Cafferty went after the White House for its response to Arizona's new anti-illegal immigration law.
"The Obama administration says it might challenge Arizona's new law in court," Cafferty said during Wednesday's "Situation Room."
"They're apparently concerned the law would take away resources needed to target criminals," he continued.
"How utterly absurd. There are 460,000 illegal aliens currently inside Arizona's borders, and the reason they're there is that the federal government refuses to enforce our immigration laws" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
CNN's Jack Cafferty on Monday slammed President Obama and the Democrats for their response to Arizona's new anti-illegal immigration law.
"One poll finds 70 percent of Arizona voters support this new law, so hey, maybe we better do something, too," Cafferty sarcastically said on "The Situation Room."
"And like the lemmings they are when they smell a chance to score some political points," he continued, "and some of them need a lot of help with the midterms coming up, there is now talk of rushing immigration reform through Congress."
Shhh. Wait. There's more.
"President Obama called the Arizona law misguided. What's misguided, Mr. President, is the federal government's ongoing refusal to enforce the laws that are already on the books" (video follows with transcript and commentary, h/t HotAirPundit):
On Friday's Situation Room, CNN's Suzanne Malveaux omitted the pro-illegal immigration activism of guest Isabel Garcia. Malveaux only referenced how her guest was "legal defender of Pima County, Arizona" and that she was "also co-chair of a Tucson-based human rights group." She also omitted how Garcia participated in the beating and decapitation of a pinata effigy of Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio.
The CNN correspondent, filling-in for anchor Wolf Blitzer, brought on the legal defender five minutes into the 5 pm Eastern hour to discuss how Arizona Governor Jan Brewer had signed a strong anti-illegal immigration bill into law less than an hour earlier. After introducing Garcia without mentioning the name of her organization, ("The Human Rights Coalition," whose website features a logo incorporating the southwestern states into Mexico; a CNN graphic called it the "Coalition for Human Rights"), Malveaux first asked her, "The governor...said...she's not going to tolerate racial profiling....She's not going to let police officers pull somebody over because [of] the color of their skin or how they look. Do you believe the governor?"
Stuart Elliott of the New York Times's Media Decoder blog reported on Tuesday that CNN, a network known for its consistent liberal bias, is now incredibly touting itself as "the only credible, nonpartisan voice left" on cable television. Elliott noted that this spin was being pitched by the network at a Tuesday morning event for advertisers at the Time Warner Center in New York City.
The New York Times writer highlighted the meeting hosted by CNN executives, and their overall strategy: "In a presentation to advertisers and agencies on Tuesday morning, executives of CNN indicated how they plan to counter the growing ratings of — and buzz about — the rival Fox News Channel: play up their channel’s identity as an objective source of news." Elliott quoted Jim Walton, president of CNN Worldwide, as using the "credible, nonpartisan voice" phrase, and tried to put the face on his network's poor ratings during the first quarter of 2010: "[Walton and CNN executive vice president Greg D'Alba] alluded to the recent spate of news articles about CNN’s poor ratings...as Fox News...and MSNBC...stay ahead of CNN in prime time. Mr. Walton referred lightly to 'all the great coverage we’ve had' and Mr. D’Alba said that “there’s no way” the complete story was being told about CNN’s performance."
Pope Benedict XVI and the Catholic Church are now competing with Sarah Palin and Nancy Pelosi as Jack Cafferty's favorite subject of ire, as the CNN personality devoted yet another commentary to attacking the Pontiff and the institution on Tuesday's Situation Room. It was fifth commentary in 20 days where Cafferty devoted a segment to bashing the two.
The commentator first derided Vatican Secretary of State Tarcisio Cardinal Bertone, during his Cafferty File segment 13 minutes into the 6 pm Eastern hour: "The Pope's number two, Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, insists the abuse is linked to homosexuality, not celibacy. Gay rights groups are outraged, saying it's a perverse strategy by the Vatican to shirk its own ethical and legal responsibility. Bingo- that's spot-on." He continued that "this official made the ludicrous claim in Chile, where one pedophile priest had sex with young girls, impregnating at least one teenager."
On Monday evening and Tuesday, ABC, CBS, and CNN all highlighted a Catholic priest's call for Pope Benedict XVI's resignation due to his alleged mishandling of the Church sex abuse scandal, labeling him "outspoken," and even going so far to compliment him as "brave" and "gutsy." All three networks, however, ignored the priest's affiliation with a liberal group and his dissension from Church teaching.
During a report on the wider abuse scandal on Monday's World News With Diane Sawyer, ABC's Dan Harris mentioned Father James Scahill's public call for the Pope to step down during a recent sermon at his parish in Massachusetts. Before playing a clip from Father Scahill, Harris stated that "anger is clearly rising within the [Catholic] Church. In his Sunday sermon this week, Father James Scahill of Massachusetts called for the Pope to resign." The ABC correspondent did not give any details on the priest's background.
Father Scahill is the pastor of St. Michael's Catholic Church in East Longmeadow. In 2004, he accepted the "Priest of Integrity Award" from Voice of the Faithful. The organization, which purports to be Catholic, achieved some visibility in the media after the 2002 revelation of the sex abuse in the Boston archdiocese. It has taken heterodox positions on Church issues, such as calling for an end to priestly celibacy, and endorsed liberal dissenting theologians such as Rev. Charles Curran. CNN featured Dan Bartley, the president of VOTF, during a March 26, 2010 segment which also featured two other liberal Christians who advocated radical changes inside the Catholic Church.
On Monday's Situation Room, CNN's Jack Cafferty continued his attack on Pope Benedict XVI and the Catholic Church, devoting his fourth commentary in 12 days on the Church sex abuse scandal. Cafferty spun a recent comment by a high-ranking cardinal who denounced the media's campaign of innuendo against the Pope as "petty gossip," falsely portraying it as being about the abuse itself.
The commentator devoted his 5 pm Eastern hour "Cafferty File" segment to the scandal. After detailing the impact of the scandal in "the Pope's native Germany," Cafferty launched his latest spin on the Church hierarchy's reaction to the issue:
CAFFERTY: Meanwhile, Easter Sunday has come and gone with little from the Church. The Pope passed up yet another opportunity to address the scandal in his address. But we did get this: while defending the pope, one top Vatican cardinal denounced- quote, 'petty gossip,' unquote. That's what he called the accusations of the sexual abuse of children by Catholic priests- 'petty gossip.'
CNN's Jack Cafferty slammed the Catholic Church and Pope Benedict XVI during his regular commentaries on Wednesday and Thursday, for a total of three times during the course of a week, as he also targeted them on March 25. On all three occasions, Cafferty also read mostly Catholic-bashing e-mails from viewers.
During the March 25 "Cafferty File" segment, the CNN commentator wasted little time in trying to cast the Church in the worst possible light, forwarding the NY Times's recent slanted coverage of the abuse scandal: "Here we go again. Time now for another chapter in the tawdry tale titled: The Pope and the Pedophile Priests. The New York Times reports that top Vatican officials - including the future Pope Benedict XVI - refused to defrock a Wisconsin priest who molested as many as 200 deaf boys." He later asked as his "Question of the Hour" if Benedict XVI should resign. The five responses he read at the end of the hour all criticized the Pope and the Church.
CNN commentator Jack Cafferty predictably revisited his Palin Derangement Syndrome on Friday's Situation Room, hours after the former Alaska governor made a campaign appearance for Senator John McCain for his re-election bid. Cafferty used the "Caribou Barbie" label often used by the left, and blamed Palin for polarizing the American people.
The CNN personality, who devoted 35% of his "Cafferty File" segments over a month period in 2008 to bashing the former Republican vice presidential candidate, couldn't resist devoting his 5 pm Eastern commentary to Palin's Friday appearance with McCain in Arizona. After getting out of the way the obligatory references to her Fox News gig and her upcoming television series on TLC, Cafferty unleashed hell upon his nemesis on the right, pointing to her as the sole cause for the senator's failed presidential bid, and even omitted that she is the former governor of the 49th state:
On Thursday's Situation Room, CNN's Wolf Blitzer engaged newly-elected Republican Scott Brown on his opposition to ObamaCare, and asked him the same question from the left twice in succession: "What's wrong with giving 30 million-plus more Americans access to health insurance?" He also later added, "What's wrong with spending money...if it's going to give access to 30 million Americans?" [audio clips available here; video clips available here]
Blitzer had the Massachusetts senator on just before the bottom of the 5 pm Eastern hour. The anchor first complimented Brown for driving over to the CNN Washington Bureau in his "nice little truck," and immediately asked his slanted question.
After the senator gave his initial answer, Blitzer, seemingly unsatisfied by the response, pressed further, and added another argument from the left: "I guess I should rephrase the question. What's wrong with spending money- the cost, if it winds up costing money, if it winds up raising taxes on multimillionaires or millionaires, or people even earning more than $250,000 a year- if it's going to give access to 30 million Americans, so they don't have to worry about getting sick- what's wrong with that?"
On Tuesday's Situation Room, CNN's Jack Cafferty returned to targeting Nancy Pelosi, this time for endorsing the controversial "Slaughter Solution" to passing ObamaCare through the House of Representatives without a vote. Cafferty labeled the proposal "beyond sleazy," and later flatly remarked, "This reeks!" The commentator even gave some rare kudos to House Republicans [audio clips from the segment available here].
Cafferty devoted his 5 pm Eastern hour commentary to Pelosi's support for the "deem and pass" procedural maneuver that Democratic Representative Louise Slaughter submitted as a possible way of getting the Senate version of health care "reform" passed through the House. He wasted little time in expressing his amazement at the move: "Just when you think you've seen it all in Washington, along comes something like this. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi may try to pass the controversial health care reform bill without making members vote on it- simply unbelievable."
CNN's Jack Cafferty again criticized Nancy Pelosi on Monday's Situation Room, knocking her inaction in removing Congressman Charlie Rangel as chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee. Cafferty highlighted how Pelosi "vowed to 'drain the swamp' in Washington when she became speaker," but at the same time "refuses to force him [Rangel] out as chairman."
The CNN commentator devoted his commentary 16 minutes into the 5 pm Eastern hour to Pelosi's handling of the Rangel matter. After noting that some Democrats were joining with Republicans in calling for the New York congressman's resignation as chairman, and highlighting how even the New York Times called on the Speaker to "stop protecting him," Cafferty knocked her inaction: "Pelosi says she's waiting for the Ethics Committee to finish its investigation before she makes any decisions. This is the same Nancy Pelosi who vowed to 'drain the swamp' in Washington when she became speaker, and the same Nancy Pelosi who years ago called on Republicans to remove the 'ethically unfit' Tom Delay as their majority leader."
He left the White House in disgrace only fives months ago, but former Green Jobs Czar Van Jones is getting help from liberal media outlets with his comeback.
On Friday, CNN's Suzanne Malveaux interviewed the controversial figure, and although she asked him some tough questions about his signature at a 9/11 truther website as well as calling Republicans a**holes, her concluding sentiments with "Situation Room" host Wolf Blitzer were an obvious act of cheerleading.
"Van Jones really feels like he took a fall, and he's trying to get back up," she said. "And really, this award, an NAACP Image Award helps him with a second chance."
Her campaign for his renovation continued, "And he's going to be going on to teach at Princeton University. He's going to be also in a liberal think tank based out of Washington."
And continued, "This is really a chance for him to celebrate tonight, he said, and to share this award with people that he admired who have also gotten this award. Muhammad Ali, President Bill Clinton, Condoleezza Rice" (video embedded below the fold with transcript, h/t HotAirPundit):
Stop the presses: David Gergen actually said something nice about the GOP Thursday.
"I don't think [the Democrats] got the breakthrough they were looking for in terms of the public, reaching the public and trying to change opinions," Gergen told Wolf Blitzer's "Situation Room" panel shortly after President Obama's healthcare summit ended.
"That is because intellectually, the Republicans had the best day they have had in years."
Gergen even reiterated, "The best day they have had in years."
Less amazing was the silence from the panel -- which consisted of Candy Crowley, John King, Gloria Borger, and Joe Johns -- when Gergen made this statement (video embedded below the fold with transcript, h/t Hot Air):
All this week CNN has been taking a look at “Broken Government” and in some cases the cable channel deviated from the mainstream media norm by providing a critical view of government.
That was the case on Feb. 23 when Wolf Blitzer and Lisa Sylvester scrutinized lavish pension-plan and retirement-packages for government officials during “The Situation Room.”
“Many Americans will spend half a lifetime or more working for the same company only to find little or no safety-net when that job ends,” Blitzer said to begin the report. “Others, especially those on Capitol Hill don’t have that problem.”
CNN's Jack Cafferty on Wednesday absolutely ripped Barack Obama for beginning plans on a reelection campaign.
"President Obama is taking a lot for granted," the outspoken CNNer began his segment during the 5PM hour of the "Situation Room."
Cafferty referred to a Politico piece "reporting that top White House advisers are quietly working on plans for the 2012 reelection campaign."
"I guess when you have the economy and health care reform and the deficits under control, then you can spend your time worrying about the next election -- even if it's almost three years away," he sarcastically said.
"Well, my guess is it won't turn out quite the same way," Cafferty said of Obama's future reelection efforts adding, "And if the jobs don't start coming back soon, well, he may want to see if that community organizer job is still open" (video embedded below the fold with transcript, h/t HotAirPundit):
According to ABC, CBS and NBC, an athlete involved in a three-month-old sex scandal is more newsworthy than a statement of principles signed by more than 80 conservative leaders.
Not just more newsworthy. The broadcast network morning shows devoted more than 30 minutes of coverage about Tiger Wood's statement to the press on his sexual "indiscretions" scheduled for Feb. 19. By contrast, the Feb. 17 signing of the Mount Vernon statement by 80 prominent conservative leaders received zero coverage. Both CBS and NBC sent camera crews to the event.
ABC provided the lion's share of the Tiger coverage, giving more than 17 minutes of airtime to the Woods story. A crisis management professional, a family therapist and two sports writers were brought on to speculate about the impact his expected apology would have on Woods' image and career, as well as the pros and cons of his wife Elin appearing alongside him.
Woods coverage on CBS clocked in at more than nine minutes while NBC, currently covering the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, gave Woods only four-and-a-half minutes.
CPAC, the annual Conservative Political Action Conference begins Feb. 18. Conservative leaders will rally the troops before the mid-term elections in November and discuss the future role of conservatives in politics.
One person who will not be in attendance is Meghan McCain, despite the year-long media attempt to make citizens believe she is somehow representative of conservatives. She tweeted on Feb. 11, "I have no idea where this weird rumor I am speaking at CPAC came from, it isn't true and I will not be attending or speaking."
McCain, the 25-year-old daughter of former Republican presidential nominee John McCain and a writer for The Daily Beast, has taken it upon herself to tell the GOP what needs to be fixed within the party. Because she calls herself a Republican, media outlets have perpetuated the notion that she is also conservative. By doing that, they've pushed a liberal social agenda that directly conflicts with conservative values.
Writer Kathleen Parker, herself no stranger to conservative bashing, praised McCain last spring as "one smart cookie" who "in a matter weeks ... has created a brand, presenting herself as a fresh face of her daddy's party and voice of young conservatives."
Jonathan Capehart of The Washington Post and a contributor to MSNBC, suggested last summer that "maybe what the Republican Party is going to have to do is skip a generation and wait for the Meghan McCains to come of age so they can run for office and take over the mantle of the party."
Conservative talk radio host Rush Limbaugh absolutely trashed Wolf Blitzer Tuesday for ignoring Barack Obama's declining poll numbers.
As he opened the program, Limbaugh informed listeners about new data showing the President's approval rating at the lowest point since he moved into the White House.
"He's down to 44% in a couple of polls, 46% in another, and where is the State-Controlled Media reporting this?"
To drive home the point, Limbaugh shared a montage of how Blitzer one day in March 2006 reported George W. Bush's sagging poll numbers almost every hour on the hour (video embedded below the fold with transcript, h/t Right Scoop):
CNN’s Jack Cafferty returned to bashing Sarah Palin, one of his favorite subjects of scorn, on Monday’s Situation Room, but also slammed President Obama and top Democrats again for their closed-door negotiations on health care “reform.” Cafferty, along with anchor Wolf Blitzer, poked fun of Palin for writing talking points on her hand prior to her Tea Party Convention speech.
The CNN commentator devoted his regular 5 pm Eastern hour segment to the former Alaska governor. Cafferty sarcastically remarked, “That’s swell,” after noting that Mrs. Palin was considering a run for president in 2012. He continued with more sarcasm: “Palin, who was woefully unprepared to be John McCain’s running mate, acknowledges that she- quote, ‘sure as heck better be more astute on these national issues,’ unquote- than she was two years ago- seriously- and maybe that’s why Palin says she’s started receiving daily political and economic briefings over e-mail from various Washington experts. That ought to do it, right?”
CNN's Jack Cafferty, during a commentary on Tuesday's Situation Room, fairly presented the results of recent "landmark" study which indicates abstinence-only sex education has better results than "safe sex" classes in preventing teenagers from having sex : "This just in: abstinence-only sex education might just work... [The] study...could have huge implications on the national debate over lowering teen pregnancy rates, as well as sexually-transmitted diseases."
Cafferty devoted his commentary 14 minutes into the 6 pm Eastern hour to the study, which was published in the Archives of Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine on Monday. After noting the results, that only "33 percent of sixth and seventh graders who took an abstinence-only program began having sex within two years," compared to "52 percent who were taught only about safe sex...[and] 42 percent who learned about both safe sex and abstinence," the commentator disclosed the Obama administration's decision to roll back funding of such abstinence studies. He continued by reporting the reactions from both sides of the sex ed debate: "Some call the abstinence research ‘game-changing,’ that it comes after years of getting a bad rap. But critics though say the curriculum in this study isn’t a good example of abstinence-only programs. They say the class studied didn’t take a moral tone. It encouraged teens to wait to have sex until they’re ready, not until they’re married; and it didn’t disapprove of condom use."
Two weeks after calling Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) a horrible woman, CNN's Jack Cafferty said the House Speaker's arrogance was breathtaking.
During Tuesday's "Situation Room," Cafferty addressed the report the CBS "Evening News" did the previous day on the out of control spending by members of Congress at last month's United Nations climate summit in Copenhagen.
"Her arrogance on this subject: breathtaking," said Cafferty of the Speaker's failure to "explain why it was necessary for her and her colleagues to make the trip to Copenhagen in the first place."
He marvelously continued, "I'd be curious to know where Nancy Pelosi gets her sense of entitlement to simply blow hundreds of thousands of dollars of our money at Christmas time so she and her pals can take a little trip to Copenhagen" (video embedded below the fold with transcript, h/t Story Balloon):
CNN’s Jack Cafferty blasted the Defense Department’s report on the Fort Hood massacre as a “joke” on Thursday’s Situation Room, singling out how there was “no mention in the report of the suspect’s [Major Nidal Hasan] views of Islam.” Cafferty also highlighted a recent Gallup poll that found that “43 percent of Americans admit to feeling at least a little prejudice toward Muslims.”
The CNN commentator wasted no time in criticizing the 86-page report released by the Pentagon on the Fort Hood shootings: “The Pentagon report into the massacre at Fort Hood, Texas that left 13 people dead- it’s a joke. No mention in the report of the suspect’s views of Islam- none- in fact, the 86-page report doesn’t even once mention Major Nidal Hasan by name. It lumps in radical Islam with other fundamentalist religious beliefs, and instead, focuses on things like military personnel policies and the emergency response to the November shootings.”
Cafferty later read a quote from 9/11 Commission member John Lehman, and continued his attack on the report: “Lehman...told Time magazine the Pentagon’s silence on Islamic extremism- quote, ‘shows you how deeply entrenched the values of political correctness have become,’ unquote. What a shame....The Pentagon acknowledges it did not focus so much on Hasan’s motives, as on what it called ‘actions and effects.’ The report says they didn’t want to interfere with the criminal probe into Major Hasan. Garbage.”
It was a year ago this weekend that the Israeli military halted its three-week campaign, Operation Cast Lead, against Hamas militants in Gaza, during which Israel had responded to thousands of rockets and mortars launched from Gaza over several years. During Israel’s military campaign, on a number of major stories, many American television newscasts were more inclined to report accusations made by U.N. or Palestinian officials that the Israeli military had acted improperly than they were to update viewers after the military held investigations and released reports disputing the accusations made against it. At one point, CBS Evening News anchor Katie Couric went so far as to claim that the Israelis "may have used a banned weapon."
Below is a compilation of NewsBusters postings which document how the morning and evening newscasts on ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN, FNC, and PBS reported a number of major stories from the Gaza War, highlighting examples of the media either engaging in distortion or omitting relevant information that would have cast Israel in a more favorable light, including several times when the broadcast and news networks even ignored reports issued by the Israeli military after it had taken time to investigate and dispute accusations made against its troops which had previously been reported by the media.
CNN’s Jack Cafferty highlighted the research of “some scientists [who] insist the earth is entering a cooling trend” in a commentary on CNN.com. Cafferty detailed the harsh winter weather in the northern hemisphere over the past weeks, and noted that the research “could undermine...what we’ve been told about the warming of the Earth being caused only by man-made greenhouse gas emissions.”
The editorial on CNN’s website would have been read by the commentator during his usual 6 pm Eastern hour “Cafferty File” segment on The Situation Room, but it was preempted by CNN’s wall-to-wall coverage of the earthquake in Haiti, specifically Wolf Blitzer’s interview of former President Bill Clinton on the disaster. After noting the unusually cold weather and describing its adverse effects internationally, Cafferty summarized the findings of the scientists, that “this winter is only the start of a worldwide trend toward cooler weather, which could last for 20 to 30 years.”
CNN's Jack Cafferty on Tuesday called House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) a horrible woman.
On the 4PM installment of the "Situation Room," Cafferty expressed disgust with Monday's revelation by the CBS "Evening News" about reckless spending by members of Congress at last month's United Nations climate summit in Copenhagen.
"It's a disgrace," said Cafferty. "This nation is hurting, but Nancy Pelosi can use three military jets for a December trip to Copenhagen, and then refuse to answer any questions about it."
By the end of the segment, Cafferty could only say, "What a horrible woman she is" (video embedded below the fold with transcript, h/t Allahpundit):
A year ago today, when U.N. officials accused the Israeli military of killing the driver of a vehicle delivering relief aid to Gaza during the Israeli campaign against Hamas, all the broadcast and news networks reported the accusation on January 8, 2009, noting the U.N.'s resulting cessation of relief aid deliveries. But, after the Israeli military conducted an investigation and charged that Hamas was responsible for the killing, very few of the shows that reported the initial charges by the U.N. updated viewers on this important development. An examination of the morning and evening newscasts on ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN, FNC, and PBS – including American Morning and The Situation Room on CNN; as well as Fox and Friends, the Fox Report, and Special Report with Bret Baier on FNC; and PBS's NewsHour – between January 8 and January 12, 2009, found that all these shows – with the exception of ABC’s Good Morning America – reported on the truck driver’s death at least once, with nearly all shows also directly relaying the U.N.’s charge of Israeli military culpability.
But only CNN's The Situation Room, on the January 9 show, took the time to briefly inform viewers that the Israeli military had denied responsibility for the incident as correspondent Nic Robertson related: "[The U.N.] said that two of their workers were killed by Israeli tank and machine gun fire. Israeli Defense Forces say they have investigated it. Now, they say it wasn't them, which implies that it must have been Hamas."
CNN continued its spin on the retirement of Senator Byron Dorgan on Wednesday. Anchor Campbell Brown one-upped Wolf Blitzer’s “moderate Democrat” tag of the senator, going so far to label the liberal a “conservative Democrat.” Correspondent Dana Bash also noted how the outgoing senator is apparently “popular” in his state, contrary to recent polls. Not once was Dorgan labeled “liberal” or “left.”
Brown’s interview of Dorgan aired at the bottom of the 8 pm Eastern hour. During the second half of the segment, the anchor expressed some of the left’s concerns over his decision to not run for reelection: “You know, this is that rare moment where Democrats have a supermajority and are able to get through what they wanted to accomplish. And so there are people- fairly or unfairly- who are saying, why are you doing this to us now?”