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By Brent Baker | July 12, 2014 | 1:55 PM EDT

For a few brief seconds on Friday night, Bill Maher made sense. Maher, who could be described as a “useless Obama hack” – after all, he’s a big donor to Obama and a constant defender of him who chalks up any and all criticism of Obama to racism – condemned liberals, on one subject at least, as “useless Obama hacks without a shred of intellectual honesty.”

What prompted this brief trip into reality? A report on how the NSA intercepted and stored “useless” online conversations that were “intimate” and “voyeuristic.” Maher asserted: “I just want to say, if this was happening under Bush, liberals would be apoplectic.”

By Matthew Balan | July 11, 2014 | 11:36 PM EDT

On Friday's Hardball, Chris Matthews and Howard Dean slammed the supposedly "lunatic" Republican Party for opposing President Obama's $3.7 billion request to deal with the ongoing crisis at the U.S-Mexico border. Dean likened the political stalemate over this issue and in general in Washington to McCarthyism in the 1950s: "It reminds me of the 'who lost China' debate...where one side is frothing at the mouth and finding communists under every bed; and the other side – including some reasonable Republicans...actually trying to run the country."

Matthews endorsed the former Vermont governor's take, and targeted fiscal conservatives/the Tea Party as somehow akin to Mao's Red Guards: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]

By Matthew Balan | July 10, 2014 | 6:24 PM EDT

Kellaynne Conway and Joy Behar faced off on Wednesday's CNN Tonight over the future of ABC's The View, particularly in light of Rosie O'Donnell rejoining the cast. Host Don Lemon wondered, "Will the panel reflect American politics?" When Conway asserted that the program didn't need to be political, Behar sarcastically asked if the conservative pollster wanted the job. Conway replied, "No, no, no. I think they're not really looking for a real conservative."

The former View host later underlined that "a lot of the research showed that women did get their news from us." Conway then expressed her concern about this, which led to Lemon and Behar both making the same point about the long-running ABC program: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]

By Ken Shepherd | July 9, 2014 | 9:36 PM EDT

Miracles do happen. 

On his July 9 Hardball program, MSNBC's Chris Matthews actually pressed abortion-rights absolutist Stephanie Schriock about the implications of her support for Democratic legislation to overturn the Supreme Court's ruling in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby. But Matthews put the EMILY's List president on the spot by asking if her position amounted to telling religious employers that they simply have to swallow their religious scruples in order to not run afoul of the law. Bullying religious Americans over their sincere beliefs is hardly a picture one wants painted of one's self, so Schriock sought to avoid the questions and double down on talking points. Here's the relevant transcript (MP3 audio here; video embedded below page break; emphases mine):

By Matthew Balan | July 8, 2014 | 12:28 PM EDT

On Tuesday's New Day, CNN's Kate Bolduan all but lobbied Oklahoma Rep. Jim Bridenstine to support President Obama's multi-billion dollar request to deal with the ongoing illegal immigration crisis: "There's an immediate crisis on the southwest border. The President is going to ask for $2 billion....He says it's emergency funds to help stem...the flow of immigrants coming in. Can you support giving the President these emergency funds?"

Bolduan especially went after the Republican congressman after he slammed the Obama administration's draconian press restrictions for a planned media day at an immigration facility in Oklahoma: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]

By Brent Baker | July 4, 2014 | 10:25 AM EDT

Forty-one years ago, an angry Canadian radio newsman, Gordon Sinclair, inspired many when he took to the airwaves to defend the U.S. and denounce much of the world as ingrates who didn’t appreciate America’s greatness.

“Can you name me even one time when someone else raced to the Americans in trouble? I don’t think there was outside help even during the San Francisco earthquake. Our neighbors have faced it alone and I am one Canadian who is damned tired of hearing them kicked around.”

By Matthew Balan | July 2, 2014 | 10:12 PM EDT

NBC's morning and evening newscasts have yet to cover the pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong on Tuesday. That day, ABC's World News labeled the demonstration "one of the largest marches in Hong Kong's history" during an 18-second news brief, but failed to mention that the communist Chinese government was the target of the participants. The network's morning show, Good Morning America, has yet to devote any air time to the protest.

Seth Doane filed a two-minute report about the march on Wednesday's CBS Evening News. But like his peers at ABC, Doane omitted describing the "central government here in Beijing" as communist. Anchor Scott Pelley introduced the correspondent's report by noting the anniversary the protesters were marking: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]

By Matthew Balan | June 30, 2014 | 4:14 PM EDT

On Monday's This Hour, CNN's John Berman underlined that the Supreme Court's ruling against the Obama administration's contraceptive mandate was "another setback to the administration, in what has been a difficult year for this White House." Berman later asserted that "this has to be very frustrating for them. They feel blocked politically, legally, foreign policy-wise. Pretty much, everywhere they look now, they're getting blocked."

Co-anchor Michaela Pereira also played up how all three female justices dissented in the Hobby Lobby case and forwarded the left's spin about the Court's ruling: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]

By Brent Baker | June 29, 2014 | 7:34 PM EDT

If only there were an Obama scandal for journalists to cover.

Almost exactly two years after the Washington Post’s Dana Milbank ludicrously claimed “the media would love to have an Obama scandal to cover,” on Sunday’s MediaBuzz on FNC, veteran DC journalist Julie Mason encapsulated the attitude of the Washington press corps which has little interest in the IRS scandal, insisting that “every journalist in town would love if there was proof of a scandal, they would be galloping after it.”

By Brent Baker | June 28, 2014 | 8:56 AM EDT

Graphic novelist Max Brooks, a former writer for Saturday Night Live, charged on Friday night’s Real Time with Bill Maher that Tea Party “ideologues” are just like the Nazi “ideologues” who fooled the German elite in the decades before World War II.

By Matthew Balan | June 27, 2014 | 9:48 PM EDT

Friday's World News on ABC glossed over the release of Deputy White House Chief of Staff Rob Nabors's report on the scandal at the Veterans Administration. President Obama had sent Nabors to look into the long wait times at veterans hospitals nationwide. Instead, the evening newscast set aside almost two minutes of air time to a woman, who is eight months pregnant, competing in a track and field competition.

On CBS Evening News, Scott Pelley led the broadcast with the "bleak picture" detailed in the new report. Correspondent Wyatt Andrews spotlighted how Nabors "combined scathing criticism with ideas on moving the V.A. forward." Brian Williams used the same label as Andrews during his 24-second news brief about the story on NBC Nightly News: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]

By Matthew Balan | June 26, 2014 | 2:54 PM EDT

CBS lifted its blackout of House Speaker John Boehner's planned lawsuit against the Obama White House with a 15-second news brief on Thursday's CBS This Morning. The network follows in the footsteps of NBC, which first mentioned the story a day earlier on Wednesday's Today, and ABC on Wednesday's World News.

Altogether, the Big Three networks have devoted just one minute and 18 seconds to the legal development. Anchor Norah O'Donnell cited the Washington Post's coverage of the lawsuit during the brief: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]