After being pilloried for months for the half-billion dollar Solyndra debacle, Obama Democrats are desperately trying to push a the idea that Mitt Romney has a Solyndra like failure of his own to answer for.
Upon further inspection, this claim has been shown to be false but that hasn't stopped DC newspaper Politico from repeating the false notion and crafting headlines implying the charge is true.
Politico went to its “Arena” pages to ask the experts if its recent story on the New York Times and The Washington Post being "in the tank" for Obama was accurate or inaccurate. The expert mix was pretty balanced.
Former USA Today reporter Richard Benedetto was candid: “As a daily reader of the print edition of The Washington Post, I have the clear anecdotal impression that President Obama and wife Michelle receive better headlines, photos, story placement and more-positive story angles than Mitt Romney and his wife Ann. My thesis is that an empirical study would bear that out.” Others were deniers:
Artur who? The seems to be the question at the New York Times and the national site of the Associated Press. Searches on former Congressman Artur Davis (in quotes at the Times, not in quotes at AP) return nothing relevant and nothing, respectively, even though Davis appears to be the only African-American current or former congressman to leave the Democratic Part and become a Republican in decades. As noted yesterday (at NewsBusters; at BizzyBlog), the AP treated the story as a local item yesterday, and the Washington Post carried the AP's story in its Metro local section.
It appears that the two entities might be using the old "Well, Politico covered it, so we don't have to" excuse. On Tuesday of last week, the online publication filed a story reporting rumors that Davis was changing parties. Two days ago (updated yesterday), Alex Eisenstadt made it appear as if anger and not political philosophy largely drove Davis to switch:
The gang at Politico is under fire from liberal friends for a piece by Mike Allen and Jim VandeHei alleging major newspapers have a pro-Obama, anti-Romney bias. For example, Devin Gordon, a former Newsweek writer who's now a "senior editor" at GQ, lamented "The house position of Politico, as evidenced by this piece, is that they are fair and their chief competition is not. It's a thinly disguised, fundamentally craven argument for Politico's superiority in the world of political coverage."
Unsurprisingly, the newspapers claimed they were fair and balanced in the Dylan Byers followup:
If between now and Election Day unemployment numbers improve, particularly if they dip below the 8% barrier, you know President Obama, with an MSM assist, will be out there pounding his chest about the number of jobs "he created."
But when the unemployment numbers remain weak? Well, that's not Obama's fault. Just ask Mike Allen of Politico. On today's Morning Joe, trying to explain Obama's early campaign stumbles, Allen declared that certain factors, including the bleak job numbers, were "beyond the control" of Obama. View the video after the jump.
Imagine that in one 2004 Republican primary, an opponent running to George Bush's left got 40% of the vote, and in another primary, more than 4-in-10 Republicans voted for "uncommitted" rather than support the incumbent president. Now imagine the doom the MSM would have found that to portend for Bush.
But when a candidate running to the right of Barack Obama garners 40% of the vote in the Arkansas Dem primary, and "uncommitted" amasses an astounding 42% in Kentucky . . . crickets. On Morning Joe today, Politico's Patrick Gavin proclaimed that PBO's embarrassing performance "doesn't matter." View the video after the jump.
Let's grant that Associated Press reporter Mitch Weiss, in his dispatch Saturday on the headache Democratic National Convention host state North Carolina has become for the left, acknowledged by quoting someone else that "Nobody can sugarcoat the fact that we got problems here." That said, the AP reporter applied quite a bit of sweetener with generous pinches of distortion in several instances.
Weiss's biggest howler was the patently falsely impression he gave that the constitutional amendment approved by voters on Tuesday limiting marriage to one-man, one-woman relationships achieved success solely because of a "fired-up Republican base," when the support for it had to be far broader for it to achieve its 61.06%-38.84% victory margin (scroll to the very bottom at the link; the state's Board of Elections would appear to be quite unhappy with the result).
For months, the Obama-loving media have been carping and whining about all the money going to conservative Super PACs in the wake of the Citizens United Supreme Court ruling back in 2010.
Yet as you can see from the following segment on MSNBC's Martin Bashir show Thursday, the press are giddy over the prospect the president will raise up to $15 million at actor George Clooney's campaign event later this evening (video follows with transcript and commentary):
In one of the more honest admissions of the obvious, Politico co-founder Jim VandeHei has admitted that the majority of the journalists that he's known in his career at a variety of publications "vote Democratic."
"If I had to guess, if you put all of the reporters that I’ve ever worked with on truth serum, most of them vote Democratic," VandeHei said during the March 13th edition of C-SPAN's "Road to the White House" program. Video follows.
Politico's Roger Simon on Friday criticized the White House's handling of the Hilary Rosen-Ann Romney dustup whilst also taking a poke at Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney.
Appearing on PBS's Inside Washington, Simon said, "The degree to which the Obama campaign was fearful of Hilary Rosen's comments: they really tied her to the top of the family car" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Did CNN's Jeffrey Toobin just hint at his liberal bias? Toobin told Politico "I'm not exactly famous for my hatred of the Obama administration," and added that "If you're [sic] read my books, you know – I don't have a primetime spot on Fox News."
CNN's senior legal analyst had made headlines for his dire analysis of ObamaCare's chances in the Supreme Court on Tuesday. He was explaining to Politico's Dylan Byers that his criticism of the Obama administration's defense of the bill was probably all the more noteworthy because he himself is not a big critic of Obama.
Can you imagine the outrage if in 2008 someone asked the crowd at a McCain-Palin campaign event, "Do you really think our country is ready for a black first lady?"
According to Politico, on Monday, with Michelle Obama present at a New York fundraiser for her husband, actor Robert De Niro asked attendees, "Do you really think our country is ready for a white first lady?"
On Friday, Darren Samuelsohn at the Politico (HT Hot Air), the place where it seems that inconvenient stories go so the Associated Press, the New York Times and the rest of the establishment press can claim they have an excuse not to cover them (respective proofs as of about 3:30 p.m. in the current instance are here and here), covering -- or I should say attempting to cover -- the latest of the White House's ritual Friday document dumps, reported that a White House communications official rejected an apparent proposal to seat Solyndra executives at the President's January 2011 State of the Union address, and that others within the White House already knew that Solyndra was in deep trouble before then.
And he almost got to the real meat of the story, but not quite. In this instance, not quite isn't anywhere near good enough (bolds are mine throughout this post), nor is the "nothing new here, you really don't need to read this" headline:
From David Axelrod's Magic Land of the Double Standard: "Cleanup attempt at CNN. Bring the hazmat suits."
Tonight on CNN, as reported by several outlets (Mediaite, Politico, LA Times, but not the Associated Press, which as of 11:45 p.m. on Thursday hadn't done a national story about Maher in 10 days), David Axelrod told Erin Burnett, in the process of dodging a question about whether an Obama Super-PAC would give back Bill Maher's $1 million contribution, said that Maher's outrageous, misogynist comments against mostly conservative women really aren't as important as Rush Limbaugh's one-time, apologized-for hits at Sandra Fluke:
Politico editor John Harris--known to some for his tendentious questioning during a presidential debate which provoked Newt Gingrich's first of many attacks on liberally biased debate moderators--stepped forward yesterday to proudly proclaim that that it was his idea to create a story questioning the intelligence of the American electorate.
As noted by Tim Graham here at NB, the piece was a perfect recapitulation of the rant made by former ABC anchor Peter Jennings following the 1994 election which saw the first installation of a Republican congress in decades. Instead of accusing his fellow Americans of having a "temper tantrum," Harris simply repeatedly called them "stupid," heavily emphasizing the word on four separate occasions.
On February 28, as reported at the Politico, Obama administration Energy Secretary Steven Chu told a House panel the following in response to a question he interrupted about his interest in having an "overall goal" of lowering gas prices: “No, the overall goal is to decrease our dependency on oil, to build and strengthen our economy.” Yesterday, also as carried at the Politico, Chu effectively retracted that statement, as well as his more infamous September 2008 assertion that he would like to see gas prices in the U.S. resemble those seen in Europe.
A search on Chu's full name (not in quotes) at the Associated Press's main national site and through Google at its hosted2.ap.org site returns nothing relevant to either story. It would not be unreasonable to assert that the Politico, with little or nothing in the way of direct subscriber or member outreach, it the place where many negative stories about the Obama administration get posted -- and go no further.
Alex Burns of Politico has developed a bad case of Peter Jennings Syndrome, right down to accusing the voters of a "tantrum-like response" directed at Obama on gas prices. So far, he writes, the campaign "has been more like a game of Marco Polo, as a hapless gang of Republican candidates and a damaged, frantic incumbent try to connect with a historically fickle and frustrated electorate."
The voters are a gaggle of Gumps: "And 'fickle' is a nice way of describing the voters of 2012, who appear to be wandering, confused and Forrest Gump-like through the experience of a presidential campaign. It isn’t just unclear which party’s vision they’d rather embrace; it’s entirely questionable whether the great mass of voters has even the most basic grasp of the details – or for that matter, the most elementary factual components – of the national political debate."
According to Joe Williams, the senior White House reporter for Politico, Rush Limbaugh is like the "serial murderer" who was caught with "three bodies in the trunk." The veteran journalist made the outrageous comparison on Tuesday's Martin Bashir show, a program that included other liberal smears against the conservative radio host.
Before making his offensive connection, Williams highlighted his background covering the police. Regarding Limbaugh's comments about Sandra Fluke, the journalist linked: "... [Law enforcement] always would catch the serial murderer because he was driving around with a busted taillight, not because he had, like, three bodies in the trunk." He added, "I mean they would always have some incident to really capture him on and this was Rush Limbaugh's." [See video below. MP3 audio here.]
Celebrity lawyer and unabashed liberal Gloria Allred wants conservative talk radio host Rush Limbaugh prosecuted in Florida for calling Georgetown University law student and women's rights activist Sandra Fluke a "slut" and a "prostitute."
"Fox News again buries the [monthly] jobs numbers," Politico media critic Dylan Byers groused this morning in a 10:23 a.m.-stamped post. Those numbers "appear in the lead or left-hand column atop the websites of the Washington Post, the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, CNN, and MSNBC, as of 10 a.m.," Byers noted.
In a recent article on Politico.com, Jonathan Allen laughably labeled two out of three soon-to-be retired Democratic senators -- Joseph Lieberman(I-Conn.)* and Kent Conrad (D-N.D.) -- alongside Republican Sen. Olympia Snowe (Maine). Allen did correctly label the retiring Sen. Ben Nelson (D-Neb.) as a moderate, a tag that makes more sense given his voting record. [h/t e-mail tipster James Harper]
Reporting in the wake of Tuesday's announcement that Snowe is retiring, Allen created the illusion that along with Lieberman, Conrad and Nelson, centrism in the Senate is being dealt a blow.
Imagine if a Republican campaign organization attempted to raise money by going after billionaire Barack Obama fan Warren Buffett by claiming that Buffett is making a lot of money at the pump because of higher gas prices. The press would immediately pounce and say that it's not true, because even though Buffett could be benefiting from the President's cancellation of the Keystone Pipeline, the Odious Oracle of Omaha doesn't own enterprises which sell gas at retail.
Well, Team Obama at the Obama For America campaign organization just did the same thing to the Koch Brothers a couple of days ago, and as expected, we haven't heard a peep from the establishment press about the related blatantly false email. A search on "Koch" at the Associated Press's main national web site returns nothing relevant, which is also the case with the same search at the New York Times. What follows is the text of the email I received on Friday morning (also seen here), plus the Koch Brothers' full response (bolds are mine throughout this post):
Head of the George Soros-funded Pacific Institute admitted to releasing documents from the Heartland Institute that he falsely obtained. The group’s sleazy attack was then promoted by liberal bloggers and quickly gained steam. The story was picked up by the New York Times, Politico and other media outlets.
Pacific Institute, the group that lied in order to obtain the documents, received $275,000 from Soros’s Open Society Foundations since 2006. This vicious attack by the left resulted in the release of information on the Heartland Institute’s fundraising strategy, budget, and plans to combat global warming alarmism.
Politico reporter Jonathan Martin on Tuesday mocked the "cracker counties" of Florida's conservative Panhandle. Talking to Daily Rundown host Chuck Todd, he derided, "Chuck, a lot of the counties in the Panhandle, in north Florida, the cracker counties, if you will...more resemble Georgia and Alabama than they do Florida." [See video below. MP3 audio here.]
MSNBC anchor Chuck Todd appeared indifferent to this attack, agreeing, "right." That area of Florida, of course, is where fellow MSNBC host Joe Scarborough represented when he was a member of Congress. No word yet on how Scarborough has reacted. [See update below.]