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By Ken Shepherd | June 24, 2014 | 9:20 PM EDT

Although the 42nd U.S. president made the remarks during a taped interview Tuesday for sister network NBC's Meet the Press, MSNBC's Chris Matthews completely ignored Bill Clinton's defense of his wife's "dead broke" statement as "factually true."

By contrast, the competition over at CNN on Erin Burnett OutFront featured a panel discussion in which the participants made light of Mr. Clinton's defense of his consort and forecast that Bill Clinton might end up being a net negative for his wife on the campaign trail, as he was in the 2008 primaries. [MP3 audio here; video follows page break]

By Ken Shepherd | June 23, 2014 | 8:57 PM EDT

"If she's a little elitist, let her be a little elitist!" MSNBC's Chris Matthews insisted of former  Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in a June 23 Hardball segment on a Washington Post front-pager on how Hillary "Clinton's rarefied life could be a liability in [her 2016 presidential] campaign."

"Why do people want to be fooled?!" Matthews groused moments earlier to his guests Nia-Malika Henderson of the Washington Post and Ryan Grim of the Huffington Post. "Why do the people want to be victims of fraud?" he added, seemingly hurt that Mrs. Clinton is facing scrutiny -- particularly within her party -- over her wealth and connections. "Why don't we accept them as they are, and stop making them like us?" Yes, this is the same Matthews who gleefully skewered Mitt Romney in 2012 after the leak of a video from an exclusive private fundraiser where Romney made the now-infamous 47 percent remark. As my colleague Scott Whitlock noted on September 18, 2012, Matthews gleefully opened his program that day trashing Romney's elitism (emphasis mine; listen to MP3 audio; videos follow page break):

By Matthew Balan | June 23, 2014 | 6:18 PM EDT

CNN's Michaela Pereira gushed over President Obama on Monday's New Day, after co-anchor Kate Bolduan asked for "any best advice for first-time parents" (Bolduan is pregnant with her first child): "Getting parental advice from the President of the United States – fantastic." Pereira complimented Bolduan for her question: "Well done getting a little advice from the President, too. I like that."

The expectant journalist admitted that she was "a little self-serving at the end," but her colleague reassured her: "No, no, no, no, no! It was really sweet." The President gave a pretty basic answer to Bolduan's question: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]

By Matthew Balan | June 23, 2014 | 2:45 PM EDT

On Monday's New Day, CNN's Kate Bolduan blasted conservative super PAC America Rising for a supposedly bigoted attack on Hillary Clinton. The group recently attacked the former secretary of state as being out of touch: "If Hillary is going to run for president, she might be advised to take a lengthy sabbatical from her $200,000 per pop speaking tour and private shopping sprees at Bergdorfs to try and reconnect with what's happening back here on Earth."

Bolduan asserted that America Rising's statement was a "stupid, sexist remark on a shopping spree that has nothing to do with...or shouldn't have anything to do with" the recent criticism of Clinton for her "dead broke" claim. [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]

By Matthew Balan | June 20, 2014 | 11:28 PM EDT

The Big Three networks' Friday evening newscasts finally noticed the latest development in the IRS scandal (they omitted it on Thursday), after Rep. Paul Ryan grilled Commissioner John Koskinen earlier in the day. ABC's David Muir spotlighted "the outrage...involving the IRS claiming to have lost thousands of crucial documents – lawmakers asking, how can the tax man be let off the hook for losing documents, while ordinary taxpayers would never get away with that?"

NBC's Brian Williams noted how Koskinen claimed that the IRS "lost evidence in the investigation into how they handled conservative political groups...and given how long the IRS holds on to things like our tax returns, some members of Congress just aren't buying it." CBS's Nancy Cordes zeroed in on congressional Democrats' attack on their Republican colleagues over the scandal – something that ABC and NBC didn't do: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]

By Ken Shepherd | June 18, 2014 | 10:40 PM EDT

MSNBC's Chris Matthews put his pro-Hillary puffery on the back-burner this evening to lead off Hardball with a screed against his favorite archnemesis Dick "it's pronounced CHEE-knee, by the way" Cheney.

Chris failed to disappoint with his loopy, nonsensical rant against the former vice president, at one point comparing him to a pitch man for the website Diedinhouse.com. Matthews even inspired a little nuttiness in the Huffington Post Media Group editorial director Howard Fineman, who insisted Cheney's hat-wearing was devised by the former vice president as a subtle sartorial dig at Obama's manliness or lack thereof. You cannot make this stuff up (LISTEN to the MP3 audio here; WATCH the video clip below the page break):

By Ken Shepherd | June 18, 2014 | 8:26 PM EDT

Fifty-four percent of respondents in a brand new NBC/Wall Street Journal poll believe that President Obama "can't lead, get the job done," contrasted with 42 percent who say he can. What's more, a healthy plurality, 41 percent, also answered that "the performance of the Obama administration" has "gotten worse" in the past 12 months. Yet the NBC Nightly News ignored those stunning numbers in its June 18 broadcast. [Anchor Brian Williams additionally failed to tease the poll in his opening preview of the night's stories.]

While chief White House correspondent Chuck Todd did touch on how "57 percent disapprove of the job he's doing on foreign policy," that factoid was buried in a story centered on blaming former Vice President Dick Cheney's with stoking yet another inside-the-Beltway partisan "blame game" over Iraq. You can read the full transcript below the page break (listen to the full segment via mp3 audio here; watch video excerpt below page break):

By Ken Shepherd | June 17, 2014 | 10:25 PM EDT

Hillary Clinton hit a "home run" with her performance in a live CNN "townhall"-style interview hosted by CNN's Christiane Amanpour,  Chris Matthews enthused at the opening of his June 17 Hardball program.

The MSNBC host also seemed thrilled that Clinton may have taken his on-air coaching to heart regarding Benghazi questions one week ago. First his remarks at the top of the program (emphasis mine; MP3 audio clip here; video follows page break):

By Ken Shepherd | June 17, 2014 | 9:00 PM EDT

Six more IRS employees have curiously had their emails go missing, two Republican congressmen investigating the tax-collecting agency for its improper targeting of conservative non-profits informed the press today. This follows on the heel's of the revelation Friday afternoon regarding Lois Lerner's emails to the White House, the Treasury Department, and other persons outside the IRS.

But none of the Big Three network evening newscasts even mentioned the development tonight, even as they had time for stories on the 20th anniversary of the OJ Simpson freeway chase (NBC), a rare postage stamp up for auction (CBS), and how dogs have and enforce a sort of social etiquette when they play with each other (ABC). [MP3 audio here; video montage follows page break]

By Matthew Balan | June 16, 2014 | 2:14 PM EDT

On Thursday's The Lead on CNN, James Allen Fox used actual crime data to splash cold water on a liberal talking point claiming that mass shootings on the rise: "It's a horrific event when four, five, twelve people are gunned down...But let's not think that this is an epidemic." Fox, a criminology professor at Northeastern University, also pointed out that the now-expired "assault weapons" ban had little impact on the number of mass shootings.

Anchor Jake Tapper wondered "what does society need to do" to prevent such events from happening. His guest actually contended that it would be overkill to implement draconian measures in response to such massacres: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]

By Brent Baker | June 16, 2014 | 8:10 AM EDT

Jane Pauley, who campaigned for Barack Obama in 2008 as she declared “I want to see the cool, steady hand of Barack Obama on that Bible on Inauguration Day,” on CBS’s Sunday Morning pleaded for Hillary Clinton to try to succeed him: “If not you, who? Who is the viable woman of either party who could win a primary nomination in 2016 if not you?”

By Matthew Balan | June 13, 2014 | 10:22 PM EDT

On Friday's NBC Nightly News, Brian Williams strongly hinted that the recent Islamist blitzkrieg in Iraq was completely former President Bush's fault: "Make no mistake: what's happening in Iraq right now is a direct outgrowth of the U.S. decision to invade the country over a decade ago." However, he glossed over the Obama administration's failure to negotiate a continued U.S. presence and pulling out all American forces in late 2011 as a factor in the crisis.

Williams repeated his point to David Gregory: "How does the President sell any action at all to the component of the American people who feel...it's not our dance...even though...we broke it?" Gregory seconded his contention: "Right, that Pottery Barn rule: you broke it; you own it; you got to somehow fix it." Later, Stephanie Gosk did reference the troop pullout, but didn't mention President Obama by name: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]