On Monday morning, Laura Ingraham interviewed Newsweek reporter Michael Isikoff on her national radio show about his investigative report in the magazine about Barack Obama’s campaign being flagged for some obviously fraudulent donors:
Consider the cases of Obama donors "Doodad Pro" of Nunda, N.Y., who gave $17,130, and "Good Will" of Austin, Texas, who gave more than $11,000 – both in excess of the $2,300-per-person federal limit. In two recent letters to the Obama campaign, Federal Election Commission auditors flagged those (and other) donors and informed the campaign that the sums had to be returned. Neither name had ever been publicly reported because both individuals made online donations in $10 and $25 increments. "Good Will" listed his employer as "Loving" and his occupation as "You," while supplying as his address 1015 Norwood Park Boulevard, which is shared by the Austin nonprofit Goodwill Industries.
But the fairly chummy interview broke down when Ingraham started asking questions about why the Federal Election Commission would drag its feet on Obama for fear of looking "political." (Isn’t foot-dragging also a way of looking political?) Isikoff said the FEC will probably have no choice but to look into Newsweek’s findings, but may put off a broader probe. He added that watchdogs at the (ahem, liberal) Center for Repsonsive Politics said the Obama campaign could have avoided this kind of embarrassing story with more disclosure of donor information, at least Zip codes, if not names, of its smaller donors. "They like to say they are transparent," Isikoff said, but Ingraham jumped in and lamented, "It’s up to the journalists to stop sucking up to the Obama campaign, and actually go after them....It’s transparent that most people in the media are cheerleading for this Obama campaign. It’s obvious."Isikoff suggested "I rather doubt, though, there’s some giant conspiracy going on...Giant conspiracy by whom?" Ingraham sharply replied: "I don’t think we know a darn thing about this because we don’t have enough people who are actually journalists today, doing their jobs, that’s my view." Why do reporters simply assume there isn’t a deeper fraud among Democrats, especially, when as Isikoff reported, fully half of the money from Obama’s campaign is coming from undisclosed sources? They all assumed that incidents like prison abuse at Abu Ghraib were approved in the Oval Office, but they can’t fathom the idea that the Democrats would play games with small donors, and maybe take foreign money, as in 1996? "Gut instinct" among reporters is too often another word for biased liberal assumptions.