Former NBC Nightly News anchor Tom Brokaw threw a bit of wet blanket on the Tea Party's big night, after quoting Tea Party activist Matt Kibbe's declaration that "the people want less from their federal government," Brokaw skeptically added: "We've heard that before, when it bumps up against reality of closing a base or shutting down an agricultural substation...it gets pretty tough to do."
This led current Nightly News anchor Brian Williams to cast Tea Partiers as know-nothing hypocrites, as he added: "Reminds me of the signs at more than one rally this past season: 'Get the government out of my Social Security. Get government out of my Medicare." Williams then went on to cite how Rolling Stone's Matt Taibbi mocked Tea Party attendees as he had reported "many people he has met at rallies had been recipients of government."
The following exchange was aired during NBC News' live election night coverage on November 2:
BRIAN WILLIAMS: And Tom Brokaw here you have an establishment Republican Party, just as members of the so-called establishment, this was new thinking this past cycle. Members of the media, people in Washington. These Tea Party members are going to arrive now in Washington, duly elected. What happens to them?
TOM BROKAW: And they're not sharing the old Republican leaders by the way, because they remember during the George Bush years that John McCain described the Republican congress and the Senate as a bunch of - spending like a bunch of drunken sailors. So they've got them in their cross-hairs. They're determined to come to Washington and to take over the Republican Party. Not to be just an ancillary wing of it, in some kind. I've been talking to some of the Tea Party people and one of them is Michael Leahy who was one of the founding fathers and he said, "We want constitutional government. We want fiscal sanity. A free marketplace. And we want to get rid of Obamacare if we have to introduce a bill every day and let the President veto it every day. That's what we're determined to do."
Matt Kibbe, who speaks for Freedom Works, the Dick Armey organization has said, "We want this message to go across the country. The people want less from their federal government." We've heard that before, when it bumps up against reality and you're talking about closing a base or shutting down an agricultural substation of some kind, then it gets pretty tough to do, Brian.
BRIAN WILLIAMS: Reminds me of the signs at more than one rally this past season: "Get the government out of my Social Security. Get the government out of my Medicare." Matt Taibbi has written about this topic for Rolling Stone on and on, that many of the people he has met at rallies had been recipients of government.
—Geoffrey Dickens is the Senior News Analyst at the Media Research Center. You can follow him on Twitter here