NBC's Today: Patrick Kennedy, the First Democrat to "Misbehave"

Is it possible that Tim Russert hasn’t been paying attention? The host of Meet the Press appeared on the May 5 edition of NBC’s Today show to discuss President Bush and the midterm elections. Anchor Matt Lauer also asked him about the political fallout from Representative Patrick Kennedy’s car crash:

Russert: "Republicans obviously are watching this very carefully because they want to suggest to the country it's not just Republicans who misbehave or the culture of corruption or whatever. It also could be Democrats. And they're going to really dig into this case, I think, pretty actively."

But Mr. Russert is surely aware that in addition to Democrat Patrick Kennedy’s troubles, there’s also the case of Democratic Representative William Jefferson. He is being investigated in connection with a bribery scandal. Additionally, Congressman Alan Mollohan, a Democrat from West Virginia, recently resigned as the top Democrat on the House ethics committee:

"The Wall Street Journal reported two weeks ago that Mollohan steered millions of dollars in appropriations to nonprofit groups in his district — with much of the money going to organizations run by people who contribute to the lawmaker's campaigns."

But I guess if Russert and others in the media acknowledged these cases, they’d have to start challenging Democratic spinners who apply the phrase ‘culture of corruption’ specifically to Republicans. And where’s the fun in that?

It’s also interesting to note that although the three networks fully covered the Kennedy car crash, neither NBC’s Today nor CBS’s Early Show mentioned that this was his second car crash in three weeks. Over on ABC’s Good Morning America, however, they did reference the April 15 accident. The Weekly Standard commented on Kennedy's odd hand-written account of the event. Click here for a picture.

Scott Whitlock
Scott Whitlock
Scott Whitlock is the senior news analyst for the Media Research Center and a contributing editor for NewsBusters.org