As CBS and NBC both touted President Obama's Tuesday visit to New Jersey, so too did CNN hype Obama's "bromance" with Governor Chris Christie as the President tried to step away from Washington and his administration's scandals.
White House correspondent Jessica Yellin said it would be a "good chance" for Obama to trumpet the effectiveness of his government as FEMA's performance after Hurricane Sandy was a "bright spot" for Obama. Although a positive CNN headline read "'odd couple' puts politics aside," correspondents admitted that political gain was a part of the visit for both men.
In an interview with Chris Christie on Friday's NBC Today, co-host Matt Lauer grilled the New Jersey Governor on his skepticism that man-made climate change caused Superstorm Sandy: "You said you don't think there's been any proof thus far that Sandy was caused by climate change. Several experts I've heard from say the destruction, though, from Sandy, was probably more severe because of elements of climate change, including rising sea levels." [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
Lauer began to ask: "Are you not willing to say that's from-" Christie cut him off: "No, I'm not....this is their business, they study it, and they say, 'probably,' 'maybe.' All I said was, I haven't been shown any definitive proof yet that that's what caused it. And this is just – listen, this is distraction. I've got a place to rebuild here and people want to talk to me about esoteric theories."
Covering New Jersey Governor Chris Christie's secret weight loss surgery, Good Morning America's Paula Faris couldn't help but make fat jokes. The reporter on Wednesday began her segment by wryly asserting, "Chris Christie is wasting no time devouring his critics." She continued, "The no-holds-barred New Jersey Governor known for his healthy appetite...sounded off" at reporters. [See video below. MP3 audio below.]
Faris found clips of liberal comedians mocking the Republican governor. She included one of David Letterman joking, "Bring it, fat boy!" In another snippet, Jimmy Fallon sneered, "Christie hopes to visit the site of the Last Supper. You know, see if there's any leftovers." This isn't the first time the ABC morning show has joined in on fat jokes about Christie.
Campaign 2016 has already started, and the New York Times weighed in on the presidential hopefuls in three stories Tuesday. So far, it's a hail for Hillary, a ho-hum greeting for Joe Biden, and hostility toward Republican governors Chris Christie and Bobby Jindal. David Halbfinger's Tuesday front-page story was loaded with hostility toward New Jersey's governor: "Brash Christie Plays Rutgers Circumspectly."
It does not take much for Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey to uncork his temper. He has called a Navy combat veteran an “idiot,” suggested reporters “take the bat” to a lawmaker in her 70s, and gone taunt-to-taunt with detractors on the boardwalk and in countless town hall meetings.
It's a safe bet that most conservative Republicans would rush to support a political leader with the following record, especially in a traditionally Democratic state:
-- Reversed a $2.2 billion deficit and brought it into balance without raising taxes, largely by reduced spending and eliminating wasteful and unaffordable programs, allowing for a projected fiscal 2014 budget surplus of $300 million.
Reacting to Chris Christie not being invited to speak at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), on Wednesday's NBC Today, co-host Matt Lauer melodramatically announced: "...another battle for New Jersey Governor Chris Christie today. But this time, he's at odds with the right wing of his own party." The headline on screen throughout the segment read: "Cold Shoulder for Christie; NJ Governor Snubbed By Conservative Conference." [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
In the report that follow, correspondent Andrea Mitchell eagerly touted Christie's willingness to buck the GOP: "The latest sign that Chris Christie won't kowtow to Republican hardliners, his annual budget speech Tuesday, signing on to ObamaCare..." After describing the "very public snub" from CPAC, Mitchell declared: "...some Republicans see a bigger problem, the party's refusal to broaden its base." A sound bite followed of former Bush speechwriter Michael Gerson hyperventilating: "If the Republican future does not include a place for people like Chris Christie, the Republican Party doesn't have a future."
In what has become a recurring theme on MSNBC, Morning Joe host Joe Scarborough railed against the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) for failing to invite Governor Chris Christie (R-N.J) to the event. On the February 26 edition of the program the self-described “true conservative” Scarborough slammed CPAC as not being about winning elections, but instead being an echo-chamber that focuses on “hate” and “anger.”
The segment began with liberal co-host Brzezinski expressing shock over the line-up of speakers at CPAC, including Sen.Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and former Alaska governor Sarah Palin, prompting Scarborough to throw out that, “It shows just how sick some elements of the conservative movement are.” [See video after jump. MP3 audio here.]
Mika Brzezinski immediately asked her producer if the seven-second delay had worked. It hadn't. On today's Morning Joe, praising the "authenticity" of the New Jersey governor, an unbleeped Mort Zuckerman said there's "no bull****" about Chris Christie.
Joe Scarborough sought to slough off the incident, saying no seven-second delay was necessary: "you got a lot of farmers saying that in western Pennsylvania. That's no big deal." Mika begrudgingly mouthed agreement but her tone and body language left no doubt that she was uncomfortable with Mort's excursion into the scatalogical. View the video after the jump. H/t NB reader Cobokat.
Giving advice is easy; accepting it, not so much. One day after Chris Christie downed a doughnut and joked that he's “the healthiest fat guy you've ever seen in your life” on Monday night's edition of “The Late Show With David Letterman,” a medical expert on presidential health said the New Jersey governor's weight is no laughing matter.
"I'm worried he may have a heart attack. I'm worried he may have a stroke," former White House physician Connie Mariano said in an interview with Jim Acosta, CNN's national political correspondent regarding the GOP "heavyweight."
Wrapping up a panel discussion on Tuesday's NBC Today about New Jersey Governor Chris Christie poking fun at his weight during a David Letterman appearance, co-host Willie Geist argued the issue was a major political obstacle to Christie: "I think if he didn't weigh what he weighed right now, he'd be talked about as the shoo-in to be the nominee next time. But that's a real problem that people have to think about if they want to cast a vote for him, is his health." [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
The journalists of Good Morning America offered, perhaps, a preview of 2016, highlighting Chris Christie's weight and what "could be a major campaign issue." After playing clips of the New Jersey governor talking to David Letterman, guest co-host Amy Robach scolded, "He's going to have to lay off the doughnuts."
Co-anchor George Stephanopoulos lectured, "[Christie] knows it. If he wants to run, he is going to have to lose some real weight." Reporter Dan Harris found a medical expert. The correspondent related, "Former White House physician Connie Mariano, who helped President Clinton lose 30 pounds in office, said she cringed when she saw Christie eating that doughnut and that she's worried about him dying on the job." [See video below. MP3 audio here.]
According to New Jersey Governor Chris Christie (R), NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell "didn't seem to care one bit" when the lights went out at the Superdome in the middle of Sunday's Super Bowl.
Christie, who was sitting in Goodell's box for the game, told CBS Late Show host David Letterman Monday of the Commissioner's reaction to the blackout, "He was eating some popcorn, checking his Blackberry. He seemed relatively unconcerned."
While the media were quick to point out how Garden State Republicans were quick to criticize the House Republican leadership for not calling a vote on Sandy relief before the expiration of the 112th Congress, you probably haven't heard about how a potential Democratic challenger to Chris Christie has gotten into hot water for saying the Republican governor "prayed a lot" for the devastating natural disaster to boost his popularity.
That comment came a few days ago from New Jersey Senate President Stephen Sweeney (D), in what seems to be another attempt by some Democrats in exploiting tragedy. While local New Jersey news outlets and some national publications have reported the story, it seems that thus far ABC, CBS, and NBC have ignored this in their evening new coverage last night:
New Jersey Governor Chris Christie appeared on all three network morning shows on Wednesday and was greeted in each interview by the host seizing on his harsh words for congressional Republicans over a delayed vote on Hurricane Sandy relief. [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
On NBC's Today, co-host Matt Lauer proclaimed: "You're not happy, it seems, with the course of the Republican Party right now. You blasted some Republicans in Congress last week after their inaction over Hurricane Sandy. You said they showed 'callous indifference, selfishness, duplicity,' they were, 'practicing toxic politics.' Strong letter to follow. Those aren't the words of a guy who's happy with his party."
After House Speaker Boehner pulled a vote for Hurricane Sandy aid on Tuesday, CNN gave a microphone to outraged politicians who bashed the House GOP for not voting on the relief bill that Senate Democrats loaded with pork.
CNN gave two interviews to Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.) airing his grievances against fellow Republicans, and anchor Don Lemon interviewed three Democrats who wanted the relief bill passed: Rep. Nita Lowey (D-N.Y.), House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.), and Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.). [Video below the break. Audio here.]
Apparently, Barbara Walters's idea of balance is grilling Chris Christie about being too fat and unhealthy to be president. Yet, during the same 10 Most Fascinating People of 2012 program, she conducted a girl talk session with Hillary Clinton, laughing with the Secretary of State about her hair. Walters appeared on Wednesday's Good Morning America to promote the show. Talking to Christie, she derided, "I feel very uncomfortable asking this question when I'm sitting opposite you. But you are a little overweight." [See video below. MP3 audio here.]
After Christie retorted, "More than a little," Walters actually wondered, "Why [are you overweight]?" To this, the governor reminded, "If I could figure that out, I'd fix it." The journalist interrogated, "There are people who say you couldn't be president because you're so heavy. What do you say to them?" In contrast, Walters gently asked Clinton: "So, I have to ask you this very personal question. Your hair?" After Clinton chuckled, the host enthused, "Nobody asks the men that." The two then shared another laugh.
It was almost a month ago that the New York and New Jersey coastlines were mercilessly pummeled by Hurricane Sandy. Immediately following the storm, the liberal media spin went into overdrive commending the leadership and compassion Obama displayed in the aftermath. But reports have been surfacing since the election, revealing how conditions in the afflicted regions are still not much improved and the majority of the broadcast media's acknowledgement of their prolonged trials and tribulations has been minimal at best.
For their part however, Fox & Friends welcomed Donna Vanzant on Tuesday morning's program. She just so happened to be the woman President Obama was photographed consoling during his official visit to survey the damage in New Jersey. To say the least, she has not been pleased with FEMA's fickle response. [ video below the page break ]
Here's a which-is-better question for you. Suppose a New Jersey motel room rented for $125 a night prior to Hurricane Sandy's devastation. When the hurricane hits, a husband, wife and their two youngsters might seek the comfort of renting two adjoining rooms. However, when they arrive at the motel, they find that rooms now rent for $250. At that price, they might decide to make do with one room. In my book, that would be wonderful. That decision would make a room available for another family who had to evacuate Sandy's wrath. New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and others condemn this as price gouging, but I ask you: Which is preferable for a family seeking shelter — a room available at $250 or a room unavailable at the pre-hurricane price of $125?
It's not the intention of the motel owner to make a room available for another family. He just sees an opportunity to earn more money. It was not the intention of the family of four who made do with just one room to make a room available for another evacuating family. They are just trying to save money. Even though it was no one's intention to make that room available, the room was made available as if intended. That's the unappreciated benefit of freely fluctuating prices. They get people to do voluntarily what's in the social interest — conserve on goods and services that have become scarce.
New Jersey Governor Chris Christie must be getting tired of the fat jokes routinely lobbed in his direction by the liberal media.
While doing a news conference Friday, he refused to answer a reporter's question about Hostess Twinkies saying instead, "I'm on Saturday Night Live enough" (video follows with transcript and commentary, photo courtesy Getty Images):
On Sunday's NBC Meet the Press, moderator David Gregory urged both Obama campaign advisor David Plouffe and Republican House Majority Leader Eric Cantor to agree that Hurricane Sandy provided a boost to the President: "The indelible images of this week had to do with Hurricane Sandy and an impact on this race because of the President's time and the images that we saw..." [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
Gregory added: "Governor Christie in New Jersey, who as we heard gave him [Obama] such high marks...was this the October surprise, these political foes, together in leadership, and Christie giving the President such high marks?"
Appearing on Friday's NBC Today, special correspondent Tom Brokaw strained to explain why New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg endorsing President Obama would be helpful: "[It] may not move the needle, for example, in Colorado, but in Ohio and in places where they're trying to get white men, they can say, 'Look, this guy has got the endorsement of the Mayor of New York.'" Why would someone in Ohio care?
Co-host Matt Lauer noted that the endorsement "wasn't a very warm hug," prompting Brokaw to argue: "It wasn't a warm hug, but it was tough on Romney about not being the guy that he was when he was Governor of Massachusetts."
NBC anchor Brian Williams went deep into the floodwaters of bias at the end of Rock Center on Thursday night, ripping into Michael Brown and Rush Limbaugh about Hurricane Sandy and then bizarrely claiming these men were playing politics – as if he wasn’t. [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
Williams boiled over: “In a related story, ‘Brownie’ is back. Michael Brown, who helped bring us the largest domestic human rights outrage of the modern era – the Katrina response – said this week the lesson of Hurricane Sandy is that people need to chill.”
Hurricane Sandy has come and gone, leaving nothing but devastation behind in its wake and with just days until the election. So it's not that surprising that MSNBC is spinning New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie's gratitude to the president for, well, doing his job as some sort of campaign gold for Team Obama.
Take Tuesday night's edition of The Last Word with Lawrence O'Donnell, as guest contributors Joy-Ann Reid of The Grio and Steve Kornacki of MSNBC's The Cycle were brought on to comment on the compilation footage of a weary Christie, speaking warmly of the president. Without hesitation, they scoffed at the idea Gov. Romney could win the election now; politicizing a tragedy in the process. [video & transcript below]
New Jersey Governor Chris Christie slapped down notions that his Tuesday RNC speech was a selfish play for a future presidential run, as CNN's Piers Morgan said he talked about himself much more than Mitt Romney.
"Oh, listen – at the end of the day, what I was doing was building the case for Mitt Romney. Do you think there's anybody here who doesn't know his name?" Christie responded. "I mean, this is really kind of silly stuff." [Video below the break.]