It appears there's nothing MSNBC's Mika Brzezinski loves more than deficits as far as the eye can see.
On Tuesday's Morning Joe, the perilously liberal co-host proudly displayed her Valentine's Day gift - Barack Obama's debt exploding budget proposal with lipstick kisses all over it (video follows with transcribed highlights and commentary):
NBC Nightly News on Monday lifted its two-plus week blackout of the Obama administration’s decision to force religious institutions, such as Catholic hospitals and charities, to provide birth control coverage in health insurance provided to employees, but ABC’s World News and the CBS Evening News have still yet to utter a syllable about what has enraged people across the political spectrum while having plenty of time to champion Planned Parenthood’s attacks on the Komen foundation.
NBC’s Chuck Todd on Monday evening found a few seconds in a larger story to relay how the Republican presidential candidates “are hitting the Obama administration’s decision to require all health insurance plans to cover birth control. Many Catholic organizations had hoped for an exemption since the rule runs counter to the church’s doctrine. Today Mitt Romney’s campaign launched a petition drive to repeal the decision, and Newt Gingrich also sounded off.”
Following Democratic National Committee talking points to the letter at the top of Thursday's NBC Nightly News, anchor Brian Williams saw Donald Trump's endorsement of Mitt Romney as an excuse to bash the Republican frontrunner: "New fallout from Mitt Romney's choice of words about the very poor, and tonight a new endorsement from a man who's catchphrase is 'You're fired.'"
In the report that followed, correspondent Peter Alexander gleefully touted Democrats smearing Romney in the wake of Trump's backing: "For Romney, the endorsement of a billionaire businessman with this as his signature line [clip of Trump saying "You're fired"] Gave Democrats new fodder for attacks on cable." A nasty sound bite followed from DNC chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz: "They both like firing people and they’ve both made millions doing it."
Politico correspondent Jonathan Martin's Tuesday morning comment about the "cracker counties" of Florida has gone unaddressed and unrebuked by the liberal media, so Sean Hannity and NewsBusters publisher Brent Bozell led off last night's "Media Mash" segment with it.
MSNBC's "Chuck Todd agrees with Jonathan Martin," but he works at the same network which is constantly trying to find hidden racist messages in Republican speeches, particularly those of former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, the Media Research Center president observed. [see the full segment video below embedded below the page break]
Politico reporter Jonathan Martin on Tuesday mocked the "cracker counties" of Florida's conservative Panhandle. Talking to Daily Rundown host Chuck Todd, he derided, "Chuck, a lot of the counties in the Panhandle, in north Florida, the cracker counties, if you will...more resemble Georgia and Alabama than they do Florida." [See video below. MP3 audio here.]
MSNBC anchor Chuck Todd appeared indifferent to this attack, agreeing, "right." That area of Florida, of course, is where fellow MSNBC host Joe Scarborough represented when he was a member of Congress. No word yet on how Scarborough has reacted. [See update below.]
On Thursday, NBC Nightly News anchor Brian Williams was eager to share new NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll numbers with viewers as he touted this headline from the results: "Our poll is also showing evidence this race is hurting the GOP, and we could see more of that tonight at the next debate..."
In a vain attempt to justify President Obama's claim that "America is back," on Wednesday's NBC Nightly News, chief White House correspondent Chuck Todd excitedly announced to viewers: "In our new NBC/Wall Street Journal poll, improvement in three key categories seems to indicate the statistical green shoots about the economy is now actually penetrating the American psyche."
So what stunning reversal of public sentiment did the new poll reveal? Here it is: "The big number, of course, is whether the country is headed in the right direction. In December, it was 22%. Now it shot up seven [eight] points to 30%. That's a one-year high." The graphic on screen showed that 61% of Americans still believe the nation is headed in the wrong direction.
Moments after President Obama concluded his State of the Union address on Tuesday, NBC Nightly News anchor Brian Williams could barely contain his glee over the speech: "A rousing recitation, a reminder of why the nation is great from President Obama." [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
Meet the Press host David Gregory was next to take up the pom-poms, as he proclaimed: "Well, this is the power of the presidency....This was a president who was very forceful.... This was his pitch for re-election. Economic fairness is at the core of it." Williams played off Gregory's comment and sounded like a White House spokesman: "Chuck Todd, anything wrong with reminding people that as a nation we're best when we have each other's backs and what is great about America?"
After eagerly awaiting the release of Mitt Romney's tax returns, on Tuesday's NBC Today, co-host Matt Lauer immediately wondered how the new information could hurt the Republican presidential candidate, asking chief White House correspondent Chuck Todd: "Do you see any surprises in here, anything that will give his rivals more ammunition?"
Todd wasted no time in reciting liberal talking points bashing Romney: "I think there is certainly some fodder for some of his Democratic opponents. Things like having a Swiss bank account. You know, that's not something a lot of ordinary Americans have....it certainly paints a picture of something that a lot of Americans cannot connect to."
When did NBC News suddenly become concerned with the welfare of the Republican Party? On Monday's NBC Today, former Democratic staffer and current chief White House correspondent Chuck Todd hyped Republican fears of Newt Gingrich: "...look what Gingrich did when he was essentially on the ballot, if you will, in '96 and '98, he helped re-elect a Democratic president..."
Todd promoted the idea of the GOP in disarray: "So there is this panic that they could not just lose the presidency, but lose control of the House and actually blow their chances at picking up the Senate. That's why this panic that the establishment will just do whatever it takes to stop him [Gingrich]."
In an attempt to make the Republican presidential race appear chaotic, on Friday's NBC Today, co-host Ann Curry turned to White House correspondent Chuck Todd and declared: "Even the word 'tumultuous' seems inadequate to describe what has happened to the GOP race in the last 24 hours." The on-screen headline screamed: "Campaign Craziness."
Todd saw only problems for the Republican candidates: "Mitt Romney still has an inability to win over conservatives and what does the party establishment do if Gingrich indeed does win South Carolina.... Do they try to rally around Romney one more time? Or do they try to say, 'You know what? Maybe it's time to look for somebody else again, because we don't think Gingrich is electable but now we're worried that Romney's not nominatable.'"
Presidential contender Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) is a libertarian who thinks the federal government is far too much of a national nanny. Regardless of what you think of his views, he's pretty consistent on his libertarian philosophy. As such, it's incredibly easy for dismissive journalists to misrepresent his policy stances and campaign promises.
Take for example, MSNBC's Chuck Todd. After airing a clip of the Texas Republican pledging at a rally in New Hampshire to overturn a federal ban on transporting raw milk across state lines, the Daily Rundown host snarked, "So there it is... don't even regulate milk. You know, that's Ron Paul in a nutshell."
On Morning Joe today, Chuck Todd was seen flipping the bird as the show went to break and he waited to come onto the set. Hat tip reader Ray R. In defense of the NBC political director, he might well have been operating under the assumption that his off-set antics would not be televised. Screengrab and video after the jump.
On Friday's The Daily Rundown on MSNBC, host Chuck Todd posed this question to guests Chris Cillizza of the Washington Post and Jonathan Martin of Politico: "Is this the single best week in the Obama re-election effort?"
Todd elaborated on his hyperbolic question by announcing: "The argument I've already heard from team Obama is yesterday that they were giddy that the first line of attack from team Romney [against Newt Gingrich] was Paul Ryan." Todd explained: "So they're sitting there going this is great because Romney is moving to the right to try to stop Newt. And so, even if he becomes the nominee, he's got like a longer path back."
On Friday's NBC Today, following a sound bite of President Obama attacking Republicans for using the word "appeasement" to describe his foreign policy, chief White House correspondent Chuck Todd proclaimed: "I think [Obama] would love to have a foreign policy conversation. That's why you're not going to hear this much."
Substitute co-host and Meet the Press moderator David Gregory raised the issue, noting that the President has, "been attacked this week by Republicans for practicing a policy, in their words, of 'appeasement' in foreign affairs." After playing Obama's response, he prompted Todd by observing: "That sounded like a president who said, 'If you want to have this fight, let's have this fight.'"
On Tuesday's NBC Nightly News, chief White House correspondent Chuck Todd promoted the President's speech in Osawatomie, Kansas calling for an extension of payroll tax cuts as "the Obama version of prairie populism" and touted how the commander in chief, "cast himself and the Democratic Party as the protectors of a middle class under Republican assault."
Throughout the report, Todd alternated between reciting White House talking points and playing sound bites of the President. Todd explained: "And in case folks missed the references to the middle class, the President used the phrase 20 times....Using phrases like 'fair shot' and 'fair share,' he even used the language of the Occupy Wall Street movement." A clip was played of Obama declaring: "These aren't Democratic values or Republican values, these aren't 1% values or 99% values. They're American values."
One might think from the breaking news that a woman has claimed she had a 13-year affair with presidential candidate Herman Cain that someone is being seriously exposed as a hypocrite. That would be the press. The media can’t deny they continue to display a lousy double standard. For Republican candidates, scandal news is instant. For Democrats, it’s eventual, if at all!
Ginger White’s charges sound a lot like Gennifer Flowers in 1992 saying she has a 12-year affair with Bill Clinton. So many in the press pounce on Flowers as unequivocal evidence of the media’s sense of balance. After all, they will remind us, just look how we covered that scandal!
All three morning shows on Tuesday trumpeted the latest woman to make accusations against Herman Cain, hyping this as a possible "death blow" and sign of coming "doom" for the "Sixth Sense" campaign. [See video below. MP3 audio here.] Ginger White insisted that she and Cain had engaged in a 13-year affair. CBS, unlike NBC and ABC, made no mention of the woman's past legal problems, which include claims of stalking.
On Tuesday's "Good Morning America," co-host Robin Roberts pounced, "Campaign bombshell...Do [White's] shocking revelations spell doom for his troubled campaign?" On CBS's "Early Show," correspondent John Dickerson proclaimed, "At the worst, it's a death blow to the campaign."
In a portion of a softball interview with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton aired on Friday's NBC Today, chief White House correspondent Chuck Todd invited her to bash the Republican field of 2012 candidates as he skeptically wondered: "Any of these Republican presidential candidates ready to answer the 3:00 a.m. phone call?" [Audio available here]
Clinton dodged the question by simply claiming: "Well, you know, I'm out of politics, happy to be out of politics." However, she did use the opportunity to puff up President Obama: "But I am very proud of the leadership that President Obama has shown. He's demonstrated unequivocally that he's ready, willing and able to do whatever is necessary for our country." [View video after the jump]
On Wednesday's NBC Today, co-host Ann Curry asked chief White House correspondent Chuck Todd about Herman Cain's long pause when answering a question about Libya: "How much do you think this new video is expected to add to Herman Cain's current slip already in the polls?" Todd proclaimed: "I think it's close to being the disqualifying moment for his campaign."
In a prior report, correspondent Kelly O'Donnell touted how "Herman Cain is finding out that in politics, silence may not be so golden." However, after playing a clip of Mitt Romney going after Obama for calling America "lazy," O'Donnell dismissed the gaffe: "Now, the President had used the word lazy when he was talking to CEOs, saying that the U.S. should have done more to try to attract business here....But the President's re-election campaign only responded to Romney saying that when he was CEO he was more concerned about out-sourcing than helping the middle class."
Conservatives had some significant victories in Tuesday’s scattered elections across the country, but the broadcast network evening newscasts on Wednesday night – with the exception of one topic on NBC – decided to only highlight, as did the morning shows earlier in the day, setbacks for conservatives.
“Ohio voters rejected a Republican-backed measure that limited the collective bargaining rights of public workers,” CBS anchor Scott Pelley noted of the measure which won by 61 to 39 percent, but neither he nor ABC’s Diane Sawyer informed viewers a ballot measure which will bar ObamaCare’s mandate won by an even more overwhelming 66 to 34 percent.
Chuck Todd didn't cautiously couch his prediction. On today's Morning Joe, NBC's political director flatly forecast that third and/or fourth party presidential candidates will emerge in the Spring.
Todd based his bold prediction on the theory that there is a hunger for populist candidates, and that populism is not the way Obama or Romney [his presumed Republican candidate] "roll." Video after the jump.
The network evening newscasts on Tuesday and the morning shows on Wednesday continued to hype the Herman Cain "firestorm," creating 12 more stories in less than 24 hours. Good Morning America's George Stephanopoulos led the show on Wednesday by trumpeting, " Republican front-runner Herman Cain changes his story again as one of his accusers now says she wants to go public on charges of sexual harassment."
On NBC's Today, Chuck Todd hyperbolically announced, "Struggling to move beyond the firestorm that is engulfing his candidacy, Herman Cain again denied he sexually harassed anyone." On that same program, guest Chris Matthews recklessly speculated that the Republican harassed women while drunk.
All three morning shows on Monday hyped a "bombshell blast" against Herman Cain, playing up a story in Politico charging the Republican presidential candidate with sexual harassment back in the 1990s. ABC's Good Morning America led with the allegations.
Co-host George Stephanopoulos, whose former boss, Bill Clinton, repeatedly faced sexual harassment claims, touted, "And this morning, bombshell blast. Major allegations against front-runner Herman Cain. Two former female colleagues accuse him of sexual harassment."
At the top of Monday's NBC Today, co-host Matt Lauer touted a new plan to address the housing crisis: "After a series of foreign policy victories, President Obama is hitting the road to sell his plan to help turn around the struggling economy and today the focus is on the housing market." Lauer later wondered to chief White House correspondent Chuck Todd if the plan would, "help politically?"
Todd declared: "Well, it could....emphasize the fact that they can't get anything done through Congress, right? That Republicans won't do anything....Mitt Romney said of the housing crisis, 'You know what? We're not allowing foreclosures to happen fast enough.' So this is a two-fer, as far as the White House is concerned. They feel like they can talk about housing but also make the Republicans look like they're out of touch on that."
Andrea Mitchell's attempt to imply Rick Perry was being racially insensitive, for calling fellow GOP presidential candidate Herman Cain "brother," during Tuesday's Republican debate, was so lame even her NBC colleague Chuck Todd wasn't buying it. Mitchell, on Wednesday's edition of MSNBC's Andrea Mitchell Reports, dredged up the N-Head controversy on Perry as she scolded: "If I were Rick Perry and had that sign or the, the stone that used to be on that, that property I'm not sure I would've gone with the 'brother' stuff, over and over again."
Todd then tried to rein in his NBC colleague as he admonished: "Just very quickly on the 'brother' thing. That's a Southern cultural thing," and reminded her that their "late friend Mr. [Tim] Russert" was also fond of using that term in a friendly way, "He loved to refer to all of us as brother." Even the Washington Post's Chris Cillizza came to Perry's defense as he agreed with Todd and offered: "It sounded to me more like Hulk Hogan saying, 'brother.'" [video after the jump]
On Thursday's NBC Today, after acknowledging President Obama's low approval rating, co-host Matt Lauer and chief White House correspondent Chuck Todd cheered other results of the latest NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll, with Lauer proclaiming: "If there is some good news for the White House this morning it's that 63% of the people in this poll approve of his jobs plan."
Todd followed: "That's right. And also just about the same amount of folks, 64%, believe it should be among the wealthy and corporations that should be paying more money for government services and how we do this and whether it's for – to pay for the President's jobs plan. So philosophically, the President has the public on his side." But then lamented: "He's just not able to somehow convince Congress, not just Republicans, but all of Democrats, to take his position on this."
The Occupy Wall Street protestors have received overwhelmingly positive coverage from the Big Three (ABC, CBS, NBC) news networks, as they used their airtime to publicize and promote the aggressively leftist movement. In just the first eleven days of October, ABC, CBS and NBC flooded their morning and evening newscasts with a whopping 33 full stories or interview segments on the protesters. This was a far cry from the greeting the Tea Party received from the Big Three as that conservative protest movement was initially ignored (only 13 total stories in all of 2009) and then reviled.
Where the Tea Party was met with skeptical claims of their motivations -- with some reporters claiming they were merely corporate backed puppets and others implying they were spurred on by their racist opposition to the first black president – the Occupy Wall Street crowd was depicted as an almost genial “grassroots” movement.
When the Tea Party movement erupted in the spring of 2009, the media elites dismissed them as corporate-generated “Astroturf” noise. They found them barely worth covering, even to besmirch them.
But when the “Occupy Wall Street” protests began on September 17, the liberal media was quickly bombarded with complaints from the Left that the media were ignoring this massive “news” story. NPR executive editor Dick Meyer said the early protests “did not involve large numbers of people, prominent people, a great disruption, or an especially clear objective.” So the protesters went out and blocked the Brooklyn Bridge and drew 700 arrests – voila, a national story.
Yeah, Herman Cain won the Florida straw poll, crushing Mitt Romney and Rick Perry. And OK, a CBS poll recently found him tied with Romney among likely Republican primary voters. Sure, he also scored a resounding victory in another straw poll this weekend. And Rasmussen just today released the finding that 56% of GOP voters like Cain's 9-9-9 plan.
So is that enough to make the Associated Press consider Cain a first-tier candidate? Nah. On MSNBC's Daily Rundown this morning, AP's political editor, Liz Sidoti, sniffed "we still consider him a second-tier candidate." Video after the jump.