Campaign Watch

By Matt Hadro | October 4, 2012 | 1:04 PM EDT

President Obama left his "greatest hits on the cutting room floor" for Wednesday night's debate, claimed CBS This Morning co-host Norah O'Donnell after the debate. According to her, "contraceptive rights" and "free mammograms" in ObamaCare are some of the President's "greatest hits."

"There was no mention of Bain," she said on Wednesday night's Charlie Rose. "There was no mention of the auto industry saved. There was no mention of the wars ended, and in the discussion about ObamaCare, he didn't mention that that would turn back many provisions that protect women's health, free mammograms, contraceptive rights."

By Kyle Drennen | October 4, 2012 | 10:55 AM EDT

Picking up where he left off Wednesday night, on Thursday's NBC Today, MSNBC's Chris Matthews continued to whine over President Obama's poor debate performance and ranted that Mitt Romney has "been accused of etch-a-sketch, last night was his greatest achievement. Everything he said within days ago, he's ignored." [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]

Prior to Matthews' appearance, co-host Savannah Guthrie noted that he had been "very vocal" during MSNBC's post-debate coverage and played a sound bite of the Hardball host blasting Obama: "I don't know what he was doing out there. He had his head down, he was enduring the debate rather than fighting it. I don't know how he let Romney get away with the crap he threw out tonight about Social Security. Where was Obama tonight?!"

October 4, 2012 | 2:11 AM EDT

MSNBC contributor Howard Fineman lamented how the president was on the defensive in his first bout with Republican nominee Mitt Romney. Jim Lehrer, who moderated the October 3 debate, has a history of bias that is usually cloaked with his soporific disposition. However, Fineman seemed agitated to the point of calling Lehrer “useless” and equated his moderating of the debate to “criminal negligence.” Fineman’s ire seems to be indicative of liberals’ reaction towards Obama’s poor debate performance.

By Matt Hadro | October 3, 2012 | 6:44 PM EDT

A Romney campaign senior adviser blistered CNN's Soledad O'Brien on Wednesday morning, quipping that "I know you have your talking points" before citing an independent study to attack Obama's jobs record. O'Brien later retorted that "Only one person who is spinning at this moment, and that would be you."

Romney advisers and supporters could make a habit of mocking Soledad O'Brien's bias on CNN. Romney surrogate John Sununu has twice gone after O'Brien in such fashion, telling her she should be ashamed to be parroting Obama talking points and that she should put an Obama sticker on her forehead.

By Kyle Drennen | October 3, 2012 | 5:18 PM EDT

Reporting the latest NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll numbers on Tuesday's NBC Nightly News, political director Chuck Todd touted a rather obvious finding in the numbers, relentless media attacks on Mitt Romney have negatively affected how voters view the Republican nominee.

Todd proclaimed: "That 47% remark, it has left a mark, if you will. When we asked, 'Is there anything you've heard in the last few weeks that's made you more favorable or less favorable on Mitt Romney?', 51% said what they've heard has made them less favorable."

By Kyle Drennen | October 3, 2012 | 4:27 PM EDT

Appearing on CNBC's Squawk Box on Wednesday, NBC News political director Chuck Todd launched into a rant attacking Rasmussen Reports polling: "We spend a lot more money polling than Scott Rasmussen does. We spend a lot more money on quality control....I hate the idea that [NBC] polling, which is rigorously done, has to get compared to what is, in some cases, you know, slop." [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]

Co-host Joe Kernen challenged Todd: "[Rasmussen] was right, though, the last couple of elections." Todd shot back: "He got right at the end. It's what happens in the middle sometimes that seems a little bit – a little bit haywire."

By Kyle Drennen | October 3, 2012 | 12:20 PM EDT

In a stunning omission on Wednesday's NBC Today, brief coverage of a 2007 video of Barack Obama completely ignored the then-Senator praising his controversial pastor Jeremiah Wright as a "great leader, not just in Chicago, but all across the country." The NBC morning show adopted a dismissive attitude toward the video, with co-host Savannah Guthrie leading off the broadcast: "Conservatives circulate a five-year-old video, in a move the Obama campaign calls desperate." [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]

In the report that followed, chief White House correspondent Chuck Todd further quoted Obama talking points: "In a transparent attempt to change the subject from his comments attacking half of the American people, Mitt Romney's allies re-circulated video of a 2007 event that was open to and extensively covered by the press at the time."

By Kyle Drennen | October 2, 2012 | 5:08 PM EDT

In a report on Tuesday's NBC Today, correspondent Kelly O'Donnell described "awkward stumbles" for Senator Scott Brown and challenger Elizabeth Warren in a Massachusetts senatorial debate on Monday. Brown's supposed stumble was that he "first named an ultra-conservative" Antonin Scalia as an example of "a very good judge" and model Supreme Court justice.

O'Donnell described Warren's stumble being that she named "retiring" Indiana Senator Dick Lugar as a Republican she could work with if elected. In reality, Lugar was defeated by Richard Mourdock in the Republican primary.

October 2, 2012 | 10:25 AM EDT

In the October 1 broadcast of NewsNation with Tamron Hall, a segment featuring former State Department Middle East officer Joel Rubin focused on how the Romney campaign was “trying to put all of these things in a big pot hoping that something picks up steam” concerning President Obama’s foreign policy. Yep, it’s still the same game with some in the media – which is to trivialize what can hurt the president to prevent it from becoming news.

By Matt Hadro | October 1, 2012 | 5:42 PM EDT

Although a CNNMoney survey had economists by a three-to-one margin saying a Mitt Romney presidency would be better for the economy than another term of President Obama, the report's title said they "reluctantly" chose Romney.

"And many of those picking Romney were more critical of, as opposed to excited about, the Republican challenger's plans," the report read. Would CNNMoney have reported that economists "reluctantly" picked President Obama by a three-to-one margin?

October 1, 2012 | 5:40 PM EDT

Election Day is still six weeks away, but the all important battleground state of Ohio will begin early voting -- both in-person and via absentee balloting -- on Tuesday, Oct. 2. At least a third of likely voters in the Buckeye State are reportedly expected to cast their ballot before Nov. 6. 

So in an attempt to drum up support and enthusiasm, as well as sympathetic press, Democratic lawmakers in Ohio are encouraging students and union workers across the state to camp outside of their respective board of elections office overnight in order to be among the first to vote the following morning. Dutifully helping out the Democrats, MSNBC Live anchor Thomas Roberts interviewed state senator Eric Kearney (D-Ohio) about the upcoming publicity stunt called "Sleep Out the Vote." Kearney explained the basis of the idea as such: 

By Kyle Drennen | October 1, 2012 | 4:50 PM EDT

On Monday's NBC Today, co-host Savannah Guthrie promoted "a congressional battle in Massachusetts featuring a very familiar name" and wondered, "Could another Kennedy be headed to Congress?" In the report that followed, Capitol Hill correspondent Kelly O'Donnell lamented the end of 65 years of Kennedys in Congress, then proclaimed: "But now a new generation has stepped forward."

In reference to Joseph Kennedy III running for Congress in the Bay State, O'Donnell announced: "In Massachusetts politics, he's no ordinary Joe....Going door to door in the rain Sunday, he bears both a family resemblance and a weighty family legacy." She noted him being "the first of his generation to enter the family trade" and touted his resume as "a Harvard law grad, former assistant D.A., and Peace Corps volunteer."