CBS’s Schieffer: Mass. Brown Voters Opposed to ‘Process,’ Not Democrats

Bob Schieffer, CBS On Sunday’s Face the Nation on CBS, host Bob Schieffer twisted the meaning of a recent Washington Post poll on the election of Scott Brown in Massachusetts: “Three-fourths of those voters...said they wanted Brown to work with Democrats to get Republican ideas into legislation....the vote for Brown was not so much a vote for or against policy or party, as it was a vote against the process itself.”

Schieffer seemed to completely ignore the fact that the poll showed 65% of those who voted for Brown did so to “express opposition to the Democratic agenda in Washington.” Instead, Schieffer tried to spin the data as evidence that voters were upset with both parties: “People don’t like the political games....if the two sides could somehow pay less attention to the voices on the fringes of the Left and the Right, take the Massachusetts voters’ advice, sit down together and see what they can agree on, who knows? They might get something done.”

At the top of his commentary, Schieffer pretended that the meaning of Brown’s extraordinary win was uncertain, rather than a rebuke of the Democratic Party: “Figuring out what Scott Brown’s victory meant has set off a fiercer debate than trying to divine the meaning of the Book of Job. We were all certain it meant something profound, we just weren’t sure what.”

As NewBusters’ Brent Baker reported, in an earlier segment on the broadcast, Capitol Hill correspondent Nancy Cordes spun the Brown win as a victory for moderates and that the new Massachusetts senator “could make being a moderate cool again.” 

Here is the full transcript of Schieffer’s commentary:

10:54AM

SCHIEFFER: Finally today, figuring out what Scott Brown’s victory meant has set off a fiercer debate than trying to divine the meaning of the Book of Job. We were all certain it meant something profound, we just weren’t sure what. Well, a Washington Post poll yesterday provided some clues. 63% of Massachusetts voters thought the country had gone off course and the big part of them voted for Brown. That’s pretty simple, actually.

But here’s the interesting part. Three-fourths of those voters, Massachusetts voters, mind you, said they wanted Brown to work with Democrats to get Republican ideas into legislation. Let me say that again. Three-fourths of his voters said they wanted him to work with the other side.

My own take is the vote for Brown was not so much a vote for or against policy or party, as it was a vote against the process itself. People don’t like the political games and they’ve lost confidence in a bumbling bureaucracy that since Katrina, can’t seem to get out of its own way.

Why trust the government with a complicated health care proposal when it can’t catch a terrorist whose own father tried to turn him in? It will take the perseverance of Job and a lot of political courage, but if the two sides could somehow pay less attention to the voices on the fringes of the Left and the Right, take the Massachusetts voters’ advice, sit down together and see what they can agree on, who knows? They might get something done. They couldn’t do worse. They might even like it and I don’t need a poll to tell me the rest of us surely would.
Kyle Drennen
Kyle Drennen
Kyle Drennen is a News Analyst for MRC