[UPDATE BELOW: Tamron Hall responds on Twitter.] MSNBC's Tamron Hall on Wednesday worried that Arizona may be turning into the "most conservative state in the nation." A graphic on the liberal cable network chided, "Arizona Too Conservative?" [Audio available here.]
Hall talked to Zachary Roth from the Talking Points Memo web page. His site first sounded the alarm over the threat from this right wing state with an article entitled, "Crazy Arizona: How A State Went From Swinging In '08 To Out On A Limb In 2010."
After discussing several conservative initiatives that the state House has passed, Hall linked the tough new immigration law and other proposals to bigotry: "Here you have a state that could be one of the first with a dominant population of Latino and Hispanics. Is that, perhaps, why we're seeing this conservative push so appealing with people there?"
During the Monday 12PM ET hour of live coverage on MSNBC, anchor Contessa Brewer described the "firestorm" over a newly passed immigration law in Arizona and fretted: "does this lead to a situation where neighbors are turning in neighbors or families turning against families?" Later in the segment, a headline on screen read: "Law Makes it a Crime to be Illegal Immigrant."
Brewer discussed the issue with Democratic Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez and wondered: "Is this an effective way to deal with the problem?" In response, Sanchez declared: "to stop people and say, 'I think you look like an illegal immigrant' and then drag them off to jail is not the way to deal with this issue."
Brewer followed up by quoting current Homeland Security Secretary and former Arizona Governor Janet Napolitano: "she would veto these kinds of bills because she said – she thought it was important for police to be doing actual police work, that they are not immigration enforcement officers." As Brewer made that argument, the headline "Law Makes it a Crime to be Illegal Immigrant" flashed on screen.
MSNBC on Wednesday suspended host Donny Deutsch in the wake of a segment on Tuesday about what role hosts such as Keith Olbermann and Ed Schultz play in making this country "America the angry." During the piece, Deutsch played a clip of an Olbermann rant and didn't defend Schultz when conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt attacked the "the biggest hate mongers in television."
However, in February, when Deutsch dismissed Hispanic senatorial hopeful Marco Rubio as a "coconut," a term that the New York Times described as meaning "brown on the outside and white on the inside," MSNBC took no action.
Apparently, incurring the wrath of Keith Olbermann is quite dangerous. (TV Newser reported the role the liberal anchor played in the punishment.)
MSNBC's Donny Deutsch kicked off a week-long segment on Monday about "America the Angry" and hinted that the "rageaholics" in this country could create another Oklahoma City-style bombing. After one guest mentioned Joe Stack, the man who flew a plane into an IRS building in February, Deutsch wrongly derided, "I don't know whether he was Republican or Democrat. I'm assuming he was probably a Republican."
In fact, Stack's manifesto, found after his death, included rants against capitalism, George W. Bush and religion. These are hardly the standard comments of a Republican. At times during the interview, Deutsch, who is serving as a substitute host on News Live, seemed annoyed that his three guests didn't agree that the U.S. is on the verge of another domestic terrorist event.
MSNBC on Monday repeatedly promoted Barack Obama as a pro-Second Amendment President and chastised gun-rights activists for "worrying" so much over this issue. News Live host Monica Novotny talked to Skip Coryell, the founder of the Second Amendment march on Washington and complained, "What are you guys worried about?
She then touted, "Our political unit today was reminding us in the First Read that President Obama has expanded gun rights more than any other Democratic President when he signed legislation that, among other things, allows people to carry weapons in national parks." Host Tamron Hall repeated the talking point in the 11am hour.
MSNBC colleague Norah O'Donnell condescendingly hit the same idea in a Tweet: "irony [sic] of the men-with-guns protests in DC: Obama has expanded gun rights more than other recent Dem president." Of course, Obama also appointed the extremely anti-gun Sonia Sotomayor to the Supreme court. Another nominee hostile to the Second Amendment may be coming soon. Candidate Obama famously chastised "bitter" Americans for "clinging" to their guns.
MSNBC's Peter Alexander on Friday eagerly agreed with a journalist who attacked Sarah Palin as "Larry the Cable Guy, minus the class and intelligence." Talking to Cathy Areu, contributing editor of the Washington Post magazine, Alexander gushed, "It's a good line." [Audio available here.]
As first reported on NewsBusters, Areu slammed the former Alaskan governor on CNN, Wednesday. Playing to MSNBC's left-wing audience, an onscreen graphic playfully asked, "Palin the Cable Gal?"
After explaining that Bill O'Reilly asked Areu to come on his show and defend her remarks, Alexander sympathized, "Areu said thanks but no thanks to Fox. Saying she wanted to appear right here on MSNBC. We don't blame her."
MSNBC's Monica Novotny on Friday highlighted a dubious Vanity Fair piece lamenting the "cost" of the Republican Party opposing Barack Obama's agenda. The News Live host talked to writers Duff McDonald and Peter Keating about their contention that the "party of no" has cost taxpayers $1.34 billion.
Apparently, the GOP and various conservative organizations total this much by not supporting health care or the stimulus. Never mentioned in the article or during the segment is the fact that Obama's spending on those two items alone will end up costing taxpayers $3.3 trillion, 2500 times the amount of the expensive Republicans.
During the segment, Keating snidely remarked, "And, you know, Republican offices need heat and light and water and sewage. People are showing up just to say no and we're paying for it!" Earlier in the piece, Novotny played along and complained, "So, for that [the price of the GOP], we've got nothing?"
At the top of the 3PM ET hour on MSNBC, anchor Peter Alexander reported on a tea party event being held in Boston and grilled conservative author Kevin Jackson on "the fringe elements who show up for these rallies. Some in the past have had offensive signs and rhetoric." As Alexander spoke a large sign from the Boston rally appeared on screen, displaying the word 'LOVE' and a heart symbol.
In fairness to Alexander, he prefaced his comment by acknowledging that such signs were "perhaps not at today's event."
After Jackson, author of 'The Big Black Lie' and founder of TheBlackSphere.net, observed that the "fringe" claim was "much ado about nothing," Alexander responded by arguing that a recent email sent out calling on tea party members to avoid any offensive behavior was evidence of offensive behavior: "I think it said the following: Like, 'no chants or signs that you wouldn't want to repeat to your mother or children....'No bigotry, threats, or profanity. No alcohol or pre-drinking.' I mean, would that be necessary if there weren't signs of bigotry or offensive signs at these events?"
Appearing in the 11AM ET hour on MSNBC Friday, NBC Nightly News anchor Brian Williams gushed over the legacy of retiring Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens: "He was famously called a 'lawyer's lawyer'...He leaves the court approaching his 90th birthday here, with one of the great quality minds, 90 or not, on the Supreme Court. Always had a kind of finely tuned intellect and nuanced opinions."
Apparently, consistently handing down left-wing rulings is what Williams considers "nuanced. "
Williams went on to conclude: "It's just been so interesting to see his ideology change over the years. You never know what's going to happen to a person when you appoint them to the Supreme Court....no one in 1975 would have believed you if you'd said someday this man, President Ford's appointment, would be known as the lion of the liberal wing of the court in 2010."
In the 2PM ET hour on MSNBC on Tuesday, left-wing Huffington Post writer Ryan Grim commented on the Republican National Committee spending scandal: "You know, what Republican donors do, generally, is pretty obnoxious to the American people. What did they have to cancel? They had to cancel a polo match, some yachting, you know, trips to bondage clubs."
Grim went on to claim: "if you want to get money from rich Republicans, you're going to have to engage in some of these obnoxious activities, so they like that to happen without the entire nation watching. Now that everybody's watching, it makes it a lot harder for them to raise money from these rich Republicans."
While Grim pretended to be a journalist reporting facts, he told Hall: "I actually haven't spoken to any – any big Republican donors the last few days." He simply noted how he was "hearing" things "in general" about RNC donors. Hall even remarked at the end of the segment: "Well Ryan, for a guy who hasn't spoken to any big money donors in 24-48 hours, not bad intel there." Apparently MSNBC now sees liberal ranting against the GOP as "intel."
MSNBC on Tuesday announced that anchor David Shuster has been "suspended indefinitely" after filming a pilot at CNN. If this is the end of the liberal host's tenure on MSNBC, he'll leave behind a long legacy of viciously attacking "conservative fear mongering."
During the Obama era, Shuster, supposedly a straight-news journalist, has been quick to deride the opponents of the President. On September 10, 2009, he smeared, "Look at the image of the Republican Party, all white males with short haircuts. They look sort of angry. No women, no minorities, and it looks like they've sort of become unhinged."
On his now-defunct program, 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, Shuster assailed conservatives and Republicans as totally irrational: "Plus, the nutty rhetoric continues from Rush Limbaugh, Michael Steele and Sarah Palin....How offensive can Rush Limbaugh be?"
Near the end of Wednesday's Dylan Ratigan Show on MSNBC, host Dylan Ratigan led his 'Busted' segment by claiming that The Drudge Report did "not let facts get in the way of a good headline" on Tuesday, by featuring one which read: "CIA: Iran Moving Closer to Nuclear Weapon." Ratigan remarked: "That'll get the ratings up."
Despite the fact that most of the world has long operated under the assumption that Iran is pursuing nuclear weapons, including the Obama administration, Ratigan singled out Matt Drudge's website for scorn, arguing: "Sounds pretty scary, right? Until you find out what the CIA report actually said. The agency's intelligence actually shows that Iran is quote, 'keeping open the option to develop nuclear weapons,' but that they quote 'do not know' whether Tehran will ultimately head down that road." The headline on screen read: "Misinformed; Wordplay On Iran's Nuke Plans."
Ratigan eventually revealed where he received his liberal taking points: "the truth, why would you let that get in the way of ratings? As our friend Glenn Greenwald from Salon.com points out on his blog, false reporting on Iran could be ultimately be far more dangerous than the perceived threat itself. Let's try to stick to the facts."
In the 10AM ET hour on MSNBC on Tuesday, anchor David Shuster talked with Democratic strategist Craig Varoga, founder of the Patriot Majority political action committee, about efforts to "fight against tea-party-backed candidates." Moments later, a headline on screen read: "Tea Party Targets; PAC Launching Counter-Attack of Tea Party."
During the same hour on Monday, Shuster described how in a speech on Sunday, "[Sarah] Palin also took aim at Democrats in the media after she was criticized for posting a map of targeted House Democrats with using rifle cross-hairs." An on-screen graphic showed a picture of the map featured on Palin's website with the headline,"Sarah Palin's Dem Hit List," suggesting Palin was inciting violence against members of Congress.
Meanwhile, during the Tuesday segment with Varoga, the word "target" was used frequently. The headline "Tea Party Targets" remained on screen throughout the segment, as several secondary headlines appeared next to it, including: "Group Targeting Tea Party-Backed Candidates," "PAC Targeting 12 to 15 Conservative Races," "PAC's Mission: To Ensure Congress Tea Party-Free," and "PAC: Americans Need to Confront Tea Party." At one point, Shuster himself used the word: "What are the specific races, specific campaigns that you're going to be targeting?"
MSNBC's David Shuster on Monday continued to hit Sarah Palin for supposedly inciting hate against liberals and Democrats on her Facebook page. The cable channel's graphic hyperbolically complained, "Sarah Palin's Dem Hit-list." With no sense of irony, Shuster then brought on the vitriolic Mike Malloy to trash Palin.
Malloy is the liberal radio host who said in 2009 that Dick Cheney has "been eating the blood of a Jewish or a Muslim baby," to cite but one example. And yet the MSNBC anchor queried this purveyor of hate speech about whether Sarah Palin is bad for the Republican Party.
Conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt also appeared and clearly annoyed Shuster by touting Palin's intelligence and by deriding MSNBC. At one point, the incredulous Shuster focused on a comment Hewitt made about Democrat Senator Barabara Boxer. He wondered, "Hugh, did you just say [Palin will] make the contrast in terms of intelligence with Barbara Boxer?" [Audio available here.]
Reacting to Haley Barbour's quip that the liberal media has given President Obama "the longest wet kiss in political history" after last week's passage of ObamaCare, Ed Schultz made clear on MSNBC this morning that he feels President Obama deserves it for all the fierce criticism he and Democrats faced during the months of debate over the legislation.
The MSNBC host and liberal radio talker was interviewed by colleague David Shuster shortly after 10:30 a.m. EDT today.
Shuster introduced the segment with a clip of the Mississippi Republican governor's quip on the March 28 edition of ABC's "This Week" and went briefly over some polling data before asking for Schultz's thoughts [MP3 audio here]:
You really have to wonder what was running through Vice President Joe Biden's head when he leaned toward President Barack Obama and said "this is a big f**cking deal." Did Biden think that after nearly a year of campaigning for health care reform he was alerting Obama to something new?
But Biden isn't the first vice president to allow an expletive slip in a public forum in this day and age of a geared up media apparatus. Back in 2004, then-Vice President Dick Cheney let the F-bomb slip in remarks he made to Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., over political disagreement between the two.
Over the last 24 hours, MSNBC's David Shuster has been heavily promoting a questionable online poll suggesting that significant chunks of Republicans think Barack Obama is the Antichrist, Hitleresque or wasn't born in America. On Wednesday, Shuster questioned the Harris survey, even as the network's graphic screamed, "Obama 'Hitler Poll' Questioned: Controversial Poll Suggests Hate Fueling Lunatic Fringe."
Shuster talked with Humphrey Taylor, the chairman of Harris Polling and provided some skepticism about the survey's validity. But, he didn't explain why MSNBC has been so heavily hyping it.
Additionally, Shuster still embraced the incendiary language of the poll. He trumpeted, "Still, a controversial new online interactive poll suggests that general hatred of President Obama on the right, which may be fueling the lunatic fringe is more widespread than previously thought."
MSNBC's David Shuster and liberal Professor Michael Eric Dyson on Monday took turns smearing Rush Limbaugh. Discussing conservative reaction to the passage of the health care bill, Shuster berated, "But, nobody on the right produced as much controversial venom this afternoon as Rush Limbaugh."
Shuster also linked the radio host to isolated outbursts over the weekend during protests in Washington. Talking to guest Michelle Bernard, he connected, "Is it possible, Michelle, to draw a link between Rush Limbaugh and when he talks, in a clip we didn't play, but how supporters should be wiped out?" He asserted, "That sort of venomous language and you create this picture- Rush Limbaugh creates this picture of fascism and Nazism on the march."
The Washington Post's Ezra Klein has some doubts about those who oppose abortion on moral, religious or ethical grounds. Apparently to him, it's just an anti-class issue in which the poor are locked out of abortion.
"I want to make a point they're wrong on two important counts," Klein said. "Number one, often times when you create more insurance coverage you reduce abortion. There is a study in The New England Journal of Medicine this month that after Massachusetts brought in their reforms that look a lot like our reforms abortion dropped 2 percent because people have more access to birth control."
MSNBC's David Shuster on Friday attacked conservatives for "targeting" an 11-year-old child who lost his mother and is now lobbying for government-run health care. The liberal anchor sneered, "Is the right sinking to a new low? We'll let you judge for yourself." He then interviewed the young Marcelas Owens and his grandmother, for the second time in ten days.
In case viewers didn't get the slant of the segment, MSNBC's graphic reiterated, "New Low For Right? Conservative Critics Call Owens' Tale a 'Sob Story.'" As the MRC's Tim Graham noted, this story is being heavily pushed by Media Matters and other left-leaning outlets. Shuster did not talk to any conservative voices. (He only played a brief clip of Rush Limbaugh asserting that Democrats are using Owens for their own purposes.)
Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-NY, for one, does not want blood on his hands from 45,000 Americans who allegedly die every year due to lack of health insurance. And MSNBC's Alex Witt, for one, doesn't think it worth questioning the veracity of that number.
"There are a lot of problems I have with the bill, primarily it doesn't go far enough. I really wish we had the public option in this bill," Nadler said in a March 18 interview on MSNBC.
"There are some other problems with it but bottom line - bottom line - the Harvard Medical School study tells us that 45,000 American per year die for lack of access to health insurance," Nadler said. "A ‘No' vote on this bill is a vote to kill 45,000 American a year. A ‘Yes' vote is a vote to save their lives - everything else is secondary."
Near the end of the 10AM ET hour on MSNBC Thursday, anchor David Shuster criticized Fox News anchor Bret Baier for having "interrupted the President numerous times" in a "contentious" and "heated" Wednesday interview. Shuster later accused the network of bias: "Fox is far more – far more conservative overall than MSNBC could ever be liberal."
Shuster brought on left-wing Mother Jones editor David Corn and David Freddoso of the Washington Examiner to discuss Baier's interview with Obama. He asked Corn if Baier's questioning was "inappropriate," Corn didn't think so, but joked: "I was just disappointed overall, though, because there were no questions about where the President was born." Freddoso thought Baier got "bogged down" asking the President about the controversial 'deem and pass' procedure possibly being used to pass ObamaCare.
Turning to Freddoso, Shuster cited former White House Communications Director Anita Dunn claiming that Fox News is the "communications arm of the Republican Party." Freddoso discounted that criticism: "You can call names and sling mud. I mean, Fox News definitely – it has more of a center-right perspective than MSNBC, which generally has more of a center-left, political perspective." Prompting Shuster to reply: "But the difference is that – and I've worked at both places – and you can find this from every sort of media analyst who's objective, Fox is far more – far more conservative overall than MSNBC could ever be liberal. It's not a question of their – one's five points to the right and one's five points to the left. It's not like that at all."
MSNBC host David Shuster on Tuesday demonstrated his condescension for conservative tea party activists, deriding protesters who had arrived in Washington as "far right" and "going nuts." Talking to reporter Richard Wolffe, he chided, "I mean, what does the White House make of the opposition on the far right?" [Audio available here.]
Later in the day, Shuster showed video of demonstrators who oppose the health care bill and dismissed, "Tea partiers are going nuts over the process Nancy Pelosi may use to pass the bill, even though it's the same process Republicans used when they were in power."
In the 10am hour, the MSNBC anchor talked to Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar. He brought up the very unusual parliamentary tactics that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has threatened to use. But, Shuster didn't seem particularly concerned with questions of the constitutionality of the so-called deem and pass measure. Instead, the journalist fretted about the "very pugnacious, very aggressive" tone of the protesters.
Michael Moore: crusader and "common-man" - with a net-worth in the range of $25-50 million, appeared on "Countdown with Keith Olbermann" with fill-in Lawrence O'Donnell March 15, continuing to fight the good fight against capitalism and health insurance companies.
Moore predicted the Democrats' ObamaCare will pass, "But this bill, as good as many of the thing are in the bill, you know - young people can stay on their parent's insurance until 26, that's a great thing - it's a death sentence for literally tens of thousands of people who are going to get sick, or have been sick, and because of their preexisting conditions."
To Moore, the current health care reform proposal does not go nearly far enough. He favors a universal single-payer system that would effectively be a government take-over of one-sixth the economy.
In his "Notebook" segment at the end of the 3PM ET hour on MSNBC Wednesday, anchor David Shuster took a moment to commemorate the passing of a "hero" of his, well-known liberal advocate Doris 'Granny D' Haddock, a staunch supporter of campaign finance reform.
Shuster celebrated how she "at the age of 89...decided to walk across the nation....All in all, 3,200 miles to underscore her message that we need to change our current campaign donation system and have publicly financed elections instead." He proclaimed that Haddock "was committed to fair and open democracy" and declared her to be "an American treasure" for her activism.
Granny D was certainly a media hero back in March of 2000, when she completed her cross-country walk for campaign finance reform in Washington D.C.. On the March 1 broadcast of NBC's Today, co-host Matt Lauer excitedly announced: "I love Granny D!" Then co-host, now CBS Evening News anchor, Katie Couric, followed Lauer's exuberance, calling her an "amazing role model" and adding: "She's great!"
On Tuesday's edition of MSNBC News Live, host David Shuster tossed softballs to an 11-year-old supporter of Obamacare. However, back in 2009, reporter Norah O'Donnell grilled a conservative teen and fan of Sarah Palin.
Shuster interviewed young Marcelas Owens, who lost his mother from pulmonary hypertension and is now lobbying for government-run health care. The anchor gently asked the child of his reception in Congress, "Are they at least pleased to meet you?" Shuster failed to mention that Owens' entire family have been members of the liberal Washington Community Action Network.
In contrast, on November 19, 2009, O'Donnell interrogated Jackie Seal, a conservative, Michigan teen who was waiting in line to see Sarah Palin at a book signing. The MSNBC host challenged this particular young person on her political beliefs: "Did you know that Sarah Palin supported the bailout?" O'Donnell berated, "Does that change your view?"
MSNBC's David Shuster on Tuesday continued to attack the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) for the organization's reference to Charlie Rangel as a "Harlem Democrat." He reiterated, "I pointed out the NRCC did not call him a corrupt New York Democrat or just corrupt. Rather, a corrupt Harlem Democrat. And I asked a guest if this was racially tinged."
Shuster, however, was silent on the fact that MSNBC reporter Luke Russert basically did the same thing. Appearing on the March 3 edition of the Ed Show, he commented on Democrats who wanted to strip the controversial Rangel of his chairmanship.
Russert explained that these politicians are in "conservative districts, who really saw problems back home in their rural districts in the mountains being associated with a Harlem Democrat who writes the nation's tax laws who a lot of folks say is not paying their taxes." Does this mean that Luke Russert is using "racially tinged" language? Will Shuster call on his colleague to apologize? (Hat tip to Clay Waters of Times Watch for noting the Russert comment.)
MSNBC's David Shuster on Monday attacked Republicans as racist for calling embattled Congressman Charlie Rangel a "crooked, Harlem Democrat." Talking to ex-Virginia Governor Doug Wilder, the host complained about a press release by the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC): "They could have called him the crooked New York Democrat. They could have called him a crooked Democrat." [Audio available here.]
Shuster continued, "Why crooked Harlem Democrat? And did you see that as being racially tinged?" Clearly, the provocative part of the NRCC's press release was labeling Rangel corrupt. How is it inaccurate to refer to the Representative as a "Harlem Democrat?" Harlem is in his district.
MSNBC host David Shuster on Tuesday touted the threat that "right-wing fringe candidates" could pose to "more mainstream Republican" politicians. The segment, which aired on News Live, identified tea party candidates as "fringe" three times.
While Shuster was introducing reporter Luke Russert, an MSNBC graphic hyperbolically derided, "Conservatives Target Their Own Fringe." After Russert discussed how a third party candidate in Nevada could help Senator Harry Reid, another graphic announced, "Third Party Support: Sen. Reid Benefits From Fringe Candidate."