On Thursday, the hosts of CBS This Morning interrogated former NBC and CNN journalist Campbell Brown and prominent liberal attorney David Boies over their effort to reform the public education system by eliminating a union sacred cow, teacher tenure. Co-host Norah O'Donnell began the segment by proclaiming: "This could be a watershed moment for America's public schools or a misguided effort to punish teachers for problems far beyond the classroom." [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
Brown explained that tenure "makes it almost impossible to remove a grossly ineffective or incompetent teacher or in some cases even an abusive teacher." In response, O'Donnell toed the union line: "But you both should answer this, what your critics charged. You've focused a lot of time and money and one of the best lawyers in the country on an issue like tenure, when many people say that budget cuts to schools and inadequate funding is really the reason why there's inequality."
Chris Matthews found yet another opportunity to cheerlead in the push for same-sex marriage by promoting HBO’s The Case Against 8 and recommending a book by lawyers David Boies and Ted Olson titled Redeeming the Dream. The Hardball host took every opportunity to compliment the two men on their successful effort to overturn Proposition 8, which banned same-sex marriage in the state of California.
Rejecting any hint of impartiality, Matthews declared Boies and Olson to be “my heroes and I think heroes to the country.” Later on in the conversation, Matthews could not conceive why a conservative–or anyone–might ever oppose gay marriage aside from it being a “cultural thing,” explaining in a mocking voice [MP3 audio here; video below]:
Wednesday's CBS This Morning turned exclusively to David Boies, one of the main attorneys who argued against California's Proposition 8 at the Supreme Court on Tuesday. The morning newscast failed to bring on any of the prominent supporters of the voter-approved ban on same-sex "marriage" in the Golden State, and granted Boies over three and half minutes to promote his cause.
During the interview, Gayle King trumpeted how, supposedly, "many people were touched...by Justice [Anthony] Kennedy, who raised the welfare of the children in same-sex marriages."
During a discussion of California's Proposition 8 being overturned on CBS's Face the Nation on Sunday, fill-in host John Dickerson questioned Family Research Council President Tony Perkins's assertion that the federal judge who made the ruling was openly gay: "You mention this claim that he's openly homosexual. I'm not sure if that's, in fact, the case."
Perkins replied by citing his source on Judge Vaughn Walker's sexual orientation: "Well, that, according to The San Francisco Chronicle, that he is openly homosexual, one of two federal judges." Thursday's Good Morning America on ABC reported that fact as well, even while NBC's Today and the CBS Early Show failed to mention it.
Dickerson followed his doubt of Perkins by arguing: "...whether [Walker] is or isn't, what basis – what bearing does that have on the case?" Perkins responded: "...had this guy been a – say, an evangelical preacher in his past, there would have been cries for him to step down from this case. So I do think it has a bearing on the case." Dickerson countered: "You think it's made his ruling skewed?"
CNN senior political analyst Gloria Borger returned to her roots as a slanted journalist on Wednesday's Newsroom with a glowing two-part report on Ted Olson and David Boies, the former rivals in Bush v. Gore who are now fighting to overturn California's Proposition 8, which outlawed same-sex "marriage." Borger portrayed their coalition as "a script that could have been written in Hollywood."
Anchor T. J. Holmes introduced the first part of the analyst's report just before the bottom of the 1 pm Eastern hour. After noting that closing arguments had begun in the lawsuit against Proposition 8, Holmes stated that the challenge was "the story of two powerhouse lawyers who have turned the partisan divide on its head. Ted Olson, a Republican, and David Boies, a Democrat, famous arch rivals in Bush v. Gore, have now joined together in this fight. It reads like a novel, which may explain why Hollywood had a lot to do with it."
Borger, who, before joining CNN as an analyst in 2007, served as a political correspondent for CBS News, continued on the Hollywood theme: "It's a script that could have been written in Hollywood. The opening shot? A lunch in the Polo Lounge at the Beverly Hills Hotel, and it starts where you might expect, with a Hollywood heavy hitter: director and actor, Rob Reiner." She featured Reiner, a well-known liberal, throughout the first part of her report, as well as Chad Griffin, a former Clinton administration staffer turned activist for same-sex "marriage."