He may call himself a "Bernie Goldberg conservative" and a "Juan Williams liberal" but in truth, NBC sportscaster Bob Costas is simply "a damn fool" who "has abused [his] role" on the network's airwaves to trash the constitutional right of "we the people" to keep and bear arms, syndicated radio host Mark Levin argued on his March 10 program.
Viewers of ABC's morning and evening newscasts on Friday would have been left unaware of President Obama's gaffe of elementary proportions during a White House concert on Thursday evening. Both Good Morning America and World News omitted how the Democrat left out the first "E" in the title of Aretha Franklin's most famous song: "When Aretha first told us what R-S-P-E-C-T meant to her."
By contrast, the network's competitors at CBS and NBC covered the President's trip-up on their morning shows and evening news broadcasts. NBC Nightly News anchor Brian Williams even mentioned a infamous spelling flub by a former Republican vice president: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
Friday's NBC Nightly News played up the latest dust-up between Senators John McCain and Ted Cruz over the latter's criticism of three of the Republican Party's presidential candidates, including Bob Dole. Brian Williams underlined the apparent "genuine and palpable tension today in Washington," after Senator Cruz criticized Dole, McCain, and Mitt Romney's campaigns during a speech at CPAC: "When you don't stand for principle, Democrats celebrate."
Kelly O'Donnell zeroed in McCain's shot back at Cruz on Andrea Mitchell's MSNBC program, and hyped how "[Cruz], one of the Tea Party's most provocative figures...triggered a new Republican rift" with his remark. O'Donnell also hyped the Texas senator's Friday statement reacting to his colleague from Arizona: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
On Friday's This Hour, CNN's John Berman bemoaned how medical marijuana is still illegal in many jurisdictions, and hinted that executive action needed be taken to fix this situation. After noting that "one of the problems right now is the federal law," Berman asked, "Can't they change this? Can't a stroke of the pen change this problem?"
Doctor Sanjay Gupta also played up how people with chronic illnesses are affected by this federal regulation, and underlined its apparent damaging impact: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
CNN anchor John Berman asked medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta Friday if just a "stroke of the pen" could "change this problem" and legalize medical marijuana.
"Can't they change this? Can't a stroke of the pen change this problem?" Berman asked of the government. Dr. Gupta, a medical marijuana advocate, agreed: "you say the same thing that I do. This is baffling to me." [Video below the break. Audio here.]
On Thursday's OutFront, CNN's Erin Burnett teed up Democrat Rep. Elijah Cummings to call for Rep. Darrell Issa's ouster as chairman of the House Oversight Committee.
After a hearing where former IRS chief Lois Lerner dodged questions on the scandal she is at the center of, CNN joined NBC in focusing its outrage instead on Issa, who cut Cummings' microphone when the latter began railing against the proceeding. Burnett called that a "new low" for Congress on Wednesday, and then on Thursday she relayed the call for Issa's removal from the Congressional Black Caucus. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
MSNBC's Chris Matthews compared CPAC to the cantina from Star Wars in a bizarre rant on Thursday's Hardball. Matthews trashed the gathering and took aim at "the Joe McCarthy imitator" Sen. Ted Cruz.
Matthews couldn't get the event name right, though: "Do you remember the bar scene in Star Wars with all those wild-eyed creatures from every part of the solar system? Well today here in Washington the whole tapestry of weirdness was reenacted at the annual convention of something called CPAC, the Conservative Political Action Committee [sic]." [Video below the break. Audio here.]
Sunny Hostin blasted an Indiana mall's ban of people wearing raised hoodies on Thursday's New Day: "This is...akin, in my view...to 'stop and frisk' – to the pretext of 'stop and frisk' – and I think many courts have found that this type of behavior is unacceptable, and downright unconstitutional."
The CNN legal analyst also contended that "'hoodie' is code for 'thug' in many places," and later claimed that "to identify just hoodies in my view...it's very, very clear what we're talking about here. We're talking about racial profiling. It's code for racial profiling." [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
CNN's Chris Cuomo ran to President Obama's defense on Tuesday's New Day, after former Senator Jim DeMint criticized the White House's handling of Russia's invasion of Ukraine: "Isn't the notion that only might can make right tired? The American people do not have appetite for more military action, and everyone is condemning Putin...Isn't this proof that President Obama's tactic of let's try to talk; let's try to be flexible – not everything is about having the biggest muscles – may be the way the world wants to proceed?"
Cuomo also ripped the GOP for standing in the way of passing the President's agenda through Congress: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
Actor Liam Neeson ranted against New York City's ultra-liberal Mayor Bill DeBlasio on Wednesday's Daily Show, citing his ban on horse-drawn carriages and keeping city schools open during a recent snow storm.
"I'm a little bit pissed off at our elected new mayor," Neeson revealed to host Jon Stewart. "He made my kids go to school in all that snow." Neeson added later that despite poll numbers supporting the contrary, "He [DeBlasio] wants to close this horse and carriage industry in New York." [Video below the break. Audio here.]
On Thursday's New Day, CNN's Chris Cuomo hammered the Catholic League's Bill Donohue for his opposition to same-sex "marriage" and his support of the now-vetoed SB 1062 in Arizona. Cuomo mouthed the talking points of the social left on LGBT issues: "Why do you want to discriminate against gays? You say, we don't...only the marriages bother us. But that's the same thing, because their right as an individual is to marry."
The anchor even questioned Donohue's Catholicism, for supposedly standing with "these Christians who are more of the extreme...[who] have their own rigid beliefs," and against Pope Francis (or, more specifically, the liberal media's spin about him): [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
CNN's Wolf Blitzer hounded Rep. Michele Bachmann over Arizona's religious freedom bill on Wednesday and "disagreed" that religious beliefs of business owners are being violated when they are forced to act against their consciences and serve all customers.
"Americans are very tolerant people. And there is religious freedom in our country," Blitzer insisted. When Bachmann responded that "This is not tolerating people's religious beliefs," he chimed back in, "On this one, I disagree." [Video below the break. Audio here.]
On Tuesday's Nightly News, NBC's Brian Williams outright framed the Arizona bill protecting the religious freedom of business owners as akin to segregation and Jim Crow laws. CBS and ABC at least gave the supporters' view, reporting the fight as between religious freedom and gay rights.
"Good evening," Williams began the news cast. "It's just one state out of our 50, but tonight what's happening in Arizona is being compared by some to the epic battles this nation has fought over lunch counters, separate drinking fountains and restrooms." [Video below the break. Audio here.]
CNN anchor Wolf Blitzer brought Jeffrey Toobin aboard Monday’s The Situation Room to expound on his New Yorker magazine blog, “Clarence Thomas’s Disgraceful Silence,” posted on Friday. After quoting how Toobin derided Thomas as an “embarrassing” justice, Blitzer ended the segment by endorsing Toobin’s screed denigrating Thomas, trumpeting: “It’s an excellent article in the new issue of The New Yorker.”
CNN's Chris Cuomo made no secret of his support of left-wing LGBT activists on Monday's New Day, as he spotlighted the controversy over a proposed bill in Arizona that would protect the religious liberties of business owners. Cuomo berated a guest from the conservative lawyer for her defense of the bill: "You don't need even need this law unless what you want to do is enforce intolerance...That's what it seems like you are doing to me, and it seems pretty obvious."
The anchor, who recently extolled rapper Macklemore's pro-LGBT agenda "Same Love" track, and raved about NFL hopeful Michael Sam's coming out, blasted guest Kellie Fiedorek and the organization she works for, the Alliance Defending Freedom, for their social conservative agenda – or as he spun it, "trying to protect Christians who feel this kind of exclusionary belief": [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
Steve Hayes and Charles Krauthammer, on Friday’s Special Report with Bret Baier, scoffed at the Washington Post’s front page characterization that President Barack Obama’s expected budget proposal “will call for an end to the era of austerity that has dogged much of his presidency.”
Hayes marveled: “This is one of the funny things about reading mainstream newspapers and watching mainstream media report on this President, is they somehow are operating under the illusion we’re living in this age of austerity.” Krauthammer proposed, “we have talked about Obama’s assaulting the Constitution. This is an assault on the dictionary. This is a guy who ran $4 trillion of deficit in three years...”
ABC, CBS, and NBC have largely punted in covering the protests against the leftist government in Venezuela. Since Monday, only NBC Nightly News has devoted a full report on the demonstrations in the South American country. Altogether, NBC has aired just over two minutes of reporting on the story. Brian Williams also stood out for explicitly mentioning the political ideology of the regime: "Many...are feeling increasingly let down by the socialist government." [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
The network's Big Three competitors trail far behind in their coverage, with CBS only mentioning the protests during a 24-second news brief on Wednesday's CBS This Morning. The network's evening newscast, CBS Evening News, has yet to cover the story. ABC has devoted three news briefs on its morning and evening newscasts since Wednesday, for a total of 52 seconds of air time.
CNN's Carol Costello might as well have read from a Think Progress cheat sheet when she battled conservative economist Stephen Moore over wages and economics on Wednesday. Moore, for his part, gave her a lesson in economics.
Starting with the recent CBO estimate that President Obama's minimum wage proposal would cost a half million jobs, Costello argued that it was just an estimate and that the net job loss could be zero. "So many people would say I'm willing to take that bet," she offered. That was only the first in a string of Costello's liberal economic claims. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
Crossfire co-host Newt Gingrich exposed CNN's double standard on Tuesday when he slammed the network for "selective outrage" over conservative Ted Nugent's remarks about President Obama, and Nugent's support of Texas GOP gubernatorial candidate Greg Abbott.
"I always love selective media outrage. As the party of Hollywood, the Democrats have lots of donors and supporters who say truly stupid things. Truly outrageous things," insisted Gingrich. Among those Democratic donors is liberal comedian Bill Maher, who said horrible things about Sarah Palin and Michelle Bachmann on CNN and yet guest-hosted on the network back in 2012. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
Nancy Grace blasted Piers Morgan on the latter's CNN program on Monday for unsurprisingly forwarding gun control in the middle of a panel discussion on the controversial Michael Dunn case: "It's not really right for a Brit to jump up and start talking to us about gun control." Morgan shot back by condescending to the HLN host specifically and to Americans in general: "It seems like it's entirely down to a Brit, because your lot can't sort out your own gun problems."
Grace, who is no stranger to controversy, interrupted the British native before he could finish his pro-gun control rant, and threw the American Revolution and the Constitution at the CNN host: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
Amidst President Obama's sliding approval ratings, liberal historian Douglas Brinkley stood up for his "above-average" legacy on Monday's Hardball.
"I think he's an above-average president. I'd put him somewhere around what Bill Clinton was able to do," Brinkley insisted. He compared Obama's withdrawal from Iraq to Eisenhower getting the U.S. out of the Korean war, even though al Qaeda is clearly making a comeback in Iraq. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
ABC, CBS, and NBC's morning and evening newscasts have so far punted on reporting the strong critique of the Obama administration's "disturbing retreat from democratic practices" with regard to the freedom of the press, according to Reporters Without Borders. The U.S. fell 13 places in the international group's annual "World Press Freedom Index" for the federal government's "increased efforts to track down whistleblowers and the sources of leaks."
The organization spotlighted the controversial leaks from Bradley Manning and Edward Snowden as examples, but also included the Department of Justice's seizure of the Associated Press' phone records as a "reminder of the urgent need for a 'shield law' to protect the confidentiality of journalists' sources at the federal level." Fox News' Shannon Bream devoted a brief to the Reporters Without Borders report on Wednesday's Special Report: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
CNN gave a prime exhibition of lazy journalism on Friday's The Situation Room when it touted Obama's "victory lap" because of "new ObamaCare enrollment numbers" without fact-checking to see if his optimism is warranted.
"President Obama is taking something of a victory lap I guess you could say," reported host Brianna Keilar. "At a meeting with House Democrats he praised his party for sticking it out on the debt ceiling fight and touted his administration's new ObamaCare enrollment numbers." [Video below the break. Audio here.]
CNN's Anderson Cooper did little to hide his outrage on his Tuesday program over a zoo in Copenhagen, Denmark killing a giraffe. Cooper confronted the zoo's scientific director and asked, "Doesn't the life of the animal itself have some value, rather than just it being part of your breeding program?" The host later expressed his dismay to Jack Hanna: "What he seems to be saying is that the animal itself doesn't really have any right to live."
Cooper later used language familiar to pro-life activists in defense of the giraffe: "At a certain point, the animals themselves should have some right to actually having a life." [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump] The anchor's pro-animal rights segments came just twenty days after CNN senior legal analyst Jeff Toobin ripped pro-lifers on his now-cancelled 10 pm Eastern program:
“Where is the mainstream media on this?” Steve Hayes of The Weekly Standard pleaded on Tuesday’s Special Report with Bret Baier in reference to President Obama’s latest decision to change the ObamaCare law. “Can you imagine if this were George W. Bush? I mean, we would be talking about a constitutional crisis, front page New York Times splashed above the fold, ‘George W. Bush: Dictator President.’ You’re seeing none of that.”
Instead of treating Hillary Clinton as a possible presidential candidate who must be vetted, NBC framed her as a sympathetic victim of a "brutal" and personal attack on Monday's Nightly News.
Andrea Mitchell bemoaned that "inflammatory excerpts" of "once-private papers" of Clinton's close friend were published an "anti-Clinton website" -- the conservative news site Washington Free Beacon. Would NBC say that an "anti-Cruz" website attacked Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tex.) if he faced a similar report? [Video below the break. Audio here.]
Monday's New Day on CNN hyped University of Missouri defensive end Michael Sam "making history" with his revelation that "I'm a football player, and I'm gay." John Berman gushed, "Six foot-two, 255 pounds – a big guy, Michael Sam – strong guy. But you want to see real strength? It's what he's doing right now." Berman later heralded Sam's revelation as "a landmark moment in confronting homophobia in professional sports."
Michaela Pereira played up how "it shows how much his teammates respect him that they didn't reveal this. They allowed him to come out with this, and say, this is my news – I'm revealing I'm gay. It's really powerful." However, Chris Cuomo, who recently acclaimed rapper Macklemore's pro-LGBT activism track, surpassed his co-anchors in his over-the-top reaction to the Sam potentially becoming the first openly-homosexual NFL player: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
NBC whitewashed Russia's communist legacy in the lead segment of its Friday broadcast of the opening ceremonies of the Winter Olympics in Sochi. Game of Thrones actor Peter Dinklage narrated the network's lionization of the largest country by land mass: "Russia overwhelms. Russia mystifies. Russia transcends. Through every stage of its story, it's resisted any notion of limitation. Through every re-invention, only redoubling its desire to cast a towering presence."
However, Dinklage continued with a glorification of the Marxist-Leninist totalitarian state that slaughtered tens of millions of people between 1917 and 1991: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
Thursday's CNN Newsroom spotlighted how President Obama "called for promoting religious freedom – quote, 'a key part of U.S. foreign policy," at the annual National Prayer Breakfast, but glossed over his administration's controversial birth control/abortifacient mandate under ObamaCare, which is being challenged in an ongoing Supreme Court case. The cable network still stood out, however, as none of the Big Three networks aired reports on Obama's speech.
John King zeroed in on the President's "very moving tribute to the Americans held in prison in North Korea and in Iran because of their faith-based beliefs." Instead of mentioning the HHS mandate, anchor Carol Costello played up the Democrat's encounter with a conservative politician as a supposed glimmer of hope for bipartisanship: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
In an interview with Vice President Biden that aired on Friday's New Day, CNN's Kate Bolduan brought up Corvettes but completely ignored ObamaCare and the IRS scandal.
Bolduan asked about Biden's new jobs task force, immigration reform (which only 6 percent of the public sees as their top priority), Corvettes, and Biden's presidential aspirations. Her toughest question was about Senate Democrats seeking re-election who don't want President Obama campaigning in their state.