CNN president Jeff Zucker praised MSNBC guest host Michael Smerconish on Tuesday as he announced that the the cable news network would be giving the radio talk show host a weekly program: "We are thrilled to have Michael join CNN...At a time when the cable news landscape has become increasingly polarized, his independence and passion for reasoned dialogue makes him the perfect fit for CNN."
Smerconish's record, especially at MSNBC, actually does not point to independence, but liberalism. Here are the worst examples of the talker's slant to the left from the Media Research Center's archives: [video included below the jump for select quotes]
Monday's New Day on CNN hyped University of Missouri defensive end Michael Sam "making history" with his revelation that "I'm a football player, and I'm gay." John Berman gushed, "Six foot-two, 255 pounds – a big guy, Michael Sam – strong guy. But you want to see real strength? It's what he's doing right now." Berman later heralded Sam's revelation as "a landmark moment in confronting homophobia in professional sports."
Michaela Pereira played up how "it shows how much his teammates respect him that they didn't reveal this. They allowed him to come out with this, and say, this is my news – I'm revealing I'm gay. It's really powerful." However, Chris Cuomo, who recently acclaimed rapper Macklemore's pro-LGBT activism track, surpassed his co-anchors in his over-the-top reaction to the Sam potentially becoming the first openly-homosexual NFL player: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
Thursday's CNN Newsroom spotlighted how President Obama "called for promoting religious freedom – quote, 'a key part of U.S. foreign policy," at the annual National Prayer Breakfast, but glossed over his administration's controversial birth control/abortifacient mandate under ObamaCare, which is being challenged in an ongoing Supreme Court case. The cable network still stood out, however, as none of the Big Three networks aired reports on Obama's speech.
John King zeroed in on the President's "very moving tribute to the Americans held in prison in North Korea and in Iran because of their faith-based beliefs." Instead of mentioning the HHS mandate, anchor Carol Costello played up the Democrat's encounter with a conservative politician as a supposed glimmer of hope for bipartisanship: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
In an interview with Vice President Biden that aired on Friday's New Day, CNN's Kate Bolduan brought up Corvettes but completely ignored ObamaCare and the IRS scandal.
Bolduan asked about Biden's new jobs task force, immigration reform (which only 6 percent of the public sees as their top priority), Corvettes, and Biden's presidential aspirations. Her toughest question was about Senate Democrats seeking re-election who don't want President Obama campaigning in their state.
Columbia University Professor Marc Lamont Hill chided Piers Morgan on the British host's CNN program on Wednesday for his apparent lack of sensitivity towards transgendered author Janet Mock during a recent interview. Hill acknowledged that Morgan was an "ally" of LGBT actvists, but claimed that his interview of Mock was akin to Mitt Romney's supposed gaffe about hiring women: "It's like when white people point to the number of black friends they have, or men talk about the binders full of women that they've hired."
When Amy Holmes of TheBlaze.com and conservative radio host Ben Ferguson challenged the left-wing academic for rebuking Morgan, Hill inadvertently exposed the ideological extremism of post-modern gender theory – especially its tendency to deny biological reality: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
Piers Morgan was left aghast on his CNN program on Wednesday over "being viciously abused by the transgender community," in his words, over an interview he conducted with Janet Mock the previous evening. Mock, who claims transgendered status, expressed outrage on Twitter over the way Morgan handled the LGBT issue, which led to the CNN host receiving a "firestorm" of criticism from left-wing activists online.
Morgan brought Mock back on for a second interview, and repeatedly whined that he shouldn't have been "vilified" by the supporters of the author (whose book is titled "Redefining Realness: My Path to Womanhood, Identity, Love & So Much More") because he has been an "open supporter" of the LGBT activists' agenda: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
CNN's Wolf Blitzer pelted Sen. Rand Paul with pro-ObamaCare talking points on Tuesday's The Situation Room, going so far as to list what he thought were the "all the positive features" of the law.
"But you like the fact that people can stay on their parents' health insurance programs until they reach the age of 26. That you don't have to worry about pre-existing conditions any longer. You can change your jobs, still get health insurance. You like all the positive features of the Affordable Care Act?" Blitzer pressed the senator. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
In an interview that aired on Friday, CNN's Jake Tapper asked President Obama if he was "naive" back in 2008 when he bragged that his presidency would be remembered as when "the rise of the oceans began to slow and our planet began to heal."
"Do you think you were naive back then, or have you recalibrated your expectations and your ambitions?" Tapper pressed Obama. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
Thursday's New Day on CNN spotlighted President Obama's latest push for gun control, and lamented how "gun issues got just a mention in this year's State of the Union," compared to last year's post-Sandy Hook address. Anchor Kate Bolduan underlined how supposedly "gun control is expected to dog him [Obama] while he's on the road."
Correspondent Brianna Keilar later asserted that "in 2013, it was one of President Obama's – probably, one of his biggest disappointments – a failure to advance a gun bill. And that issue is front and center today, even as he's pushing his populist economic agenda." [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
I guess when you've run out of anything meaningful to say, you revert to your tired old one-liners, even when they are — or should be — embarrassing.
In early 2009, five days after President Obama's first State of the Union speech, Alex Castellanos, who at the time was apparenty a "Republican strategist," said the following on a CNN Sunday show: "I think, as a friend told me once, that -- listening to Barack Obama give a speech is like sex. The worse there ever was, was excellent." Tuesday night, as Politico's Lucy McCalmont reports, Castellanos was at it again:
Leftist actor-director Robert Redford laid into Republicans in a Sunday interview on CNN’s “Reliable Sources.” Try not to notice this journalism show began with a Justin Bieber segment and included a Redford interview. Host Brian Stelter first asked how Redford felt about Obama. "I think he's a good human being. That's, I think, clear," Redford replied. "He's a humanitarian at heart, and that's good. He's trying to manage an extremely difficult situation. I mean, it's -- it's almost too much for one person."
He wouldn't say the same for the GOP: “When you have one half whose only motive is to destroy the motives of the president of the United States, then you have a diseased system. And I don't think that's his fault. I think it just makes his job tougher.” Redford lamely claimed there was bipartisanship in getting to “truth” in Watergate: [See video after jump.]
CNN's Piers Morgan used a Kinder egg to make an analogy about the absurdity of lax gun laws on Monday, but it backfired when his conservative guest didn't take the bait.
Morgan pointed to "your constitutional right to have guns, but I can't eat this chocolate egg, does that strike you as strange?" However, Oklahoma state senator Nathan Dahm agreed that Kinder eggs should be legal and the federal government would be "intrusive" to ban either Kinder eggs or guns. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
CNN's Piers Morgan provided his latest overly simplistic, pro-gun control solution to mass shootings in a series of posts on Twitter on Monday. The British TV host's first policy prescription: "Given the young ages of most mass/random shooters in America, I'd make it illegal for anyone under 25 to buy a gun of any kind."
Morgan continued by comparing buying a gun to renting a car: "It's almost impossible to rent a car under the age of 25 in America - why not regulate guns the same way? Just common sense." When someone challenged him on this, the disgraced former Daily Mirror editor attacked the constitutionally-protected right to keep and bear arms:
CNN's Chris Cuomo sang the praises of hip-hop artist Macklemore on Monday's New Day for his pro-LGBT agenda "Same Love" track, and for his part in the mass wedding ceremony at the Grammy Awards on Sunday: "I think you got to give it to Macklemore, because he's really inserted social consciousness back into rap, and that's a very welcome thing to a lot of people."
Correspondent Nischelle Turner also played up the rapper's participation in the "star-studded wedding seen around the world...officiated by Queen Latifah and Madonna acting as maid of honor," and spotlighted a clip of the Grammy winner underlining the left-wing social message of his recording: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
Carol Costello predictably carried water for the cultural left on Friday's CNN Newsroom during a segment about the firestorm over former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee's "Uncle Sugar" attack on Democrats. Costello trumpeted how "Democrats are quite gleeful" over Huckabee's remarks, and bemoaned conservatives' opposition to ObamaCare's contraception mandate: "I just can't believe we're still talking about birth control in 2014. It's just weird to me."
The anchor also glossed over the religious liberty component to the debate, and suggested that the GOP/conservatives should just drop the issue: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
Piers Morgan sparred with Ann Coulter on his Wednesday CNN show over Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein's vow to target the NRA in an upcoming movie and over the lack of new gun control regulations in the wake of the Sandy Hook shooting in December 2012. Morgan did his best to defend Weinstein, after Coulter blasted him for his "utter hypocrisy" in only recently condemning the impact of violent movies after making a fortune from them.
The British TV host later bemoaned how "there have been 35 separate school shootings in America since Newtown. Not a single changed any federal gun law in that time. Nobody on the pro-gun side seems prepared to relent about anything...to try and reduce the level of gun violence." The conservative author retorted that new firearms regulations wouldn't have done anything to stop them: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
On the 41st anniversary of Roe v. Wade, CNN's senior legal analyst smeared the entire pro-life movement in saying on Wednesday's AC360 Later, "They want women to have no control over their own bodies."
Jeff Toobin was referring to the Texas case where a hospital, claiming that it is following state law, has kept a brain-dead woman on life support against the family's wishes in order to bring her unborn child to term. Toobin went on a rant against the law: [Video below the break. Audio here.]
CNN's Piers Morgan tried to get Ann Coulter to admit she's a "female Glenn Beck" and "part of the problem" for her "divisive" and "partisan" rhetoric, on Wednesday's Piers Morgan Live.
Glenn Beck recently expressed regret that during his time at Fox News, he "played a role unfortunately in helping tear the country apart." Morgan called Coulter the "female Glenn Beck" for her "partisan rhetoric" and wondered if she regretted that. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
Unlike the journalists at NBC, who last week offered a fawning profile of "overnight sensation" Wendy Davis, CNN's Anderson Cooper on Tuesday night actually investigated the "misleading" claims and "stretching the truth" of the liberal gubernatorial candidate's bio. In a "keeping them honest segment, AC360 anchor Cooper informed viewers that an "aspiring governor is under fire tonight for allegedly blurring the facts of her life story, stretching the truth to the point where, well, some say they feel misled or worse." [See video below. MP3 audio here.]
While NBC's Maria Shriver on January 15 credulously repeated how the Texan's "personal story resonated across the country," Cooper explained that "as compelling as it is, doesn't stand up to the facts." In commercials and campaign events, Davis has been insisting that at age 19, she was a single parent who lived in a mobile home. AC360 reporter Ed Lavandera clarified, "It turns out Davis separated from her husband at age 19 but didn't divorce until she was 21. And the trailer court, which has gotten top billing in her bio, the reality is she may have only lived there for a few months."
Two liberal senators that claim news networks don’t cover climate change enough are pressuring them to do more, even as a winter deep freeze kept much of the country shivering. But as the Media Research Center and others have already found, much of the news media have spent years working hard to convince the public that climate change is a global threat.
According to National Journal, Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., and Sen. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii, members of the Senate Climate Action Task Force, are gathering signatures on a letter that complained the media had not spent enough time covering the issue on the Sunday news shows. The letter complained about the “absurdly short amount of time” the issue received on those shows. The senators called for the networks to “correct this oversight.” (video after the break)
New York's Democratic Governor Andrew Cuomo declared that "extreme conservatives" who are pro-life, pro-gun, and "anti-gay" are persona non grata in his state, but CNN – the network that employs Cuomo's brother, Chris – has been completely mum on the story.
Governor Cuomo stated last Friday that "extreme conservatives who are right-to life, pro-assault-weapon, anti-gay....have no place in the state of New York, because that's not who New Yorkers are." Yet CNN hasn't reported the governor's eye-opening discrimination – perhaps because they share a similar distaste for "extreme conservatives."
On Friday's Piers Morgan Live, Obama donor and film mogul Harvey Weinstein denied charges of anti-Catholicism in his latest movie "Philomena," but his anti-Catholic past shows otherwise.
"Well Brent Bozell, was the one a conservative columnist who, you know, accused me of that," Weinstein said of the accusations. He added later, "it's not an anti-Catholic bias. I made 'The Price About Rubies' with Renee Zellweger," and he claimed to be "a story teller" who just tells "heroic stories." [Video below the break. Audio here.]
Pro-Second Amendment author Emily Miller appeared on CNN and dismantled a gun control guest. CNN Newsroom anchor Brooke Baldwin talked to Arkadi Gerney of the liberal Center for American Progress and Miller about the announcement that powerful studio mogul Harvey Weinstein plans an attack film on the NRA.
Gerney lectured, "Emily is wrong when she said there isn't evidence that gun laws lead to reducing gun violence." Miller shot back, "Name one then...Name one." Gerney replied, "If you compare that to the ten states with the weakest gun laws in the country, you see gun deaths that are half, half the gun deaths in those states." When asked to prove it, Gerney offered himself as a source: "That's a report that I wrote and published last year on the website for the Center for American Progress."Miller zinged, "Oh, it's yourself. Oh, okay, so you're a leftist organization and your own information." [See video below. MP3 audio here.]
According to CNN's Piers Morgan, the U.S. mission in Iraq was a failure and Iraqis could ask if they're any better off now than under dictator Saddam Hussein.
Interviewing former Defense Secretary Robert Gates on Wednesday, Morgan brought up recent instability in Iraq and noted: "I suppose if you're living in Iraq and you're an Iraqi, you're saying are we really any better off now than we were under Saddam Hussein, brutal though he was and despotic though he was." [Video below the break. Audio here.]
ABC, CBS, and NBC's Thursday morning newscasts all punted on covering President Obama's Wednesday night meeting with Senate Democrats, where he called on them to reject new sanctions on Iran. These same programs, along with the networks' evening newscasts, also failed to mention the President by name in their reporting on the Senate Intelligence Committee's "scathing" new report on the 2012 terrorist attack on the U.S. facilities in Benghazi, Libya.
By contrast, Thursday's New Day on CNN devoted 40 seconds of air time to the chief executive's plea to his former colleagues in the Senate. John Berman gave two news briefs on the development.
Carol Costello hinted at her liberal slant on the gun issue on Wednesday's CNN Newsroom as she discussed the recent movie theater shooting in Florida. Costello lamented the "bizarre conversation now taking place in America: instead of talking about whether loaded guns ought to be allowed in movie theaters, many people are talking about 'text rage.'"
An on-screen graphic during the segment also suggested that a lack of strict gun control was partially to blame for the incident: "Which Is To Blame: Gun Laws Or 'Text Rage'?" [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
Tuesday's New Day on CNN followed the lead of Reuters in giving ideologically-tinged reporting about Pope Francis's latest condemnation of abortion. Kate Bolduan hyped the "blunt words from Pope Francis on abortion", and played up how "conservative Catholics have complained the new pontiff...hasn't been tough enough on the issue until now."
Correspondent Frederik Pleitgen added that "this is one of the strongest statements that this pope has made on abortion, and it comes after he was criticized by some conservatives in the Catholic Church for not taking a forceful enough position." In reality, the Argentinian-born Bishop of Rome made an equally-sharp denunciation of abortion in November in his first apostolic exhortation: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
On Tuesday's New Day, CNN's Chris Cuomo and Elizabeth Cohen applauded the 2.2 million reported enrollments in ObamaCare as "good," but also lamented that only 25 percent of the sign-ups are young adults. The Obama administration had hoped that 40 percent of the enrollees would fall in the 18 to 34-year-old age group.
Cuomo and Cohen pointed the finger entirely at insurance companies for this low figure and the resulting higher health insurance premiums: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
On Saturday, at Sean Penn's Help Haiti Home gala fundraising auction, CNN's Anderson Cooper paid $1.4 million on a work of art from American artist Jeff Koons.
As amazing as it might seem, although the as-yet unmade piece will be created using Penn's collection of old firearms, Cooper's outspoken anti-gun colleague Piers Morgan was actually second in the bidding offering $1.3 million.
On January 7, CNN's national security analyst Peter Bergen wrote on CNN.com that "al Qaeda appears to control more territory in the Arab world than it has done at any time in its history." However, CNN only mentioned his eye-opening piece once since it was published online.
In contrast to its virtual ignorance of Bergen's article, CNN reported on Dennis Rodman's bizarre visit to North Korea on nine different news hours last Wednesday.