Senior Editorial Writer of the Washington Examiner Sean Higgins published an informative column Tuesday night giving some background for a case that appeared before the Supreme Court on Wednesday morning. Shelby County, Ala. v. Eric Holder has liberals in a panic apparently, because of its challenge to a key portion of the Voting Rights Act that requires many states and some counties to get "pre-clearance" for voting law changes by a federal court. Curiously enough, major media outlets have neglected to mention the context and true history behind the law in question.
Ironically, the Voting Rights Act has completely changed the political landscape of the South ever since it was signed into law by President Lyndon B. Johnson in 1965, and in ways that have poorly served African-American voters specifically and the Democratic Party generally. Higgins explained:
On Tuesday's CBS This Morning, Norah O'Donnell and Charlie Rose ganged up on former Obama chief of staff Rahm Emanuel from the left. O'Donnell cited sources blaming Emanuel for the President's failure to push for stricter gun control during his first term. But neither anchor brought up the obvious subject: Chicago's high murder rate, and what that says about the big Democratic city's rigid anti-gun stance.
O'Donnell hounded the Chicago mayor for resisting Attorney General Eric Holder's liberal anti-gun agenda and over the Obama administration's apparent hesitance towards the controversial issue [audio available here; video below the jump]:
In their continuing push to rig the election for Barack Obama, none of the three broadcast networks – ABC, CBS, or NBC – devoted a single second of coverage to Univision’s politically devastating investigative report about the Obama Administration’s lethal gunwalking scandal, Fast and Furious.
Media Research President Brent Bozell reacted: "“This is another example of the media deliberately rigging this election. The Obama Administration provided guns to Mexican drug cartels, and the networks have the gall to ignore it. ABC, CBS and NBC have absolutely no excuse for spiking this explosive report, and are clearly doing so because it will damage Obama’s chances of re-election. Americans shouldn’t have to learn a second language to receive real investigative reporting."
UPDATE: Still no ABC, CBS, NBC coverage of Univision's Fast and Furious report on Monday's evening newscasts or Tuesday's morning shows.
Over the weekend the Univision network broke major news in the Fast and Furious gunwalking scandal. They found 57 previously unreported guns used in crimes by Mexican cartels, but ABC, CBS and NBC have yet to report the Spanish-language network’s findings.
There were zero mentions on Sunday night’s ABC's World News and CBS's Evening News (NBC's Nightly News was pre-empted by Ryder Cup coverage) or on any of Monday’s morning shows. The blackout on ABC’s broadcasts is particularly confounding since they have an excerpt from Univision's September 30 report on ABC's official Web site. (video after the jump)
CNN's Carol Costello teed up a La Raza chairman on Monday by asking him if some new voter ID laws are tantamount to a "war on minority voters." A CNN headline later blared "Voting Rights on Trial," as if the laws were going after people's rights.
After playing a clip of Attorney General Eric Holder promising legal action against any discriminatory voter laws, Costello asked her guest Jorge Plasencia "Is there a war on minority voters in this country?" The two were discussing a new Texas voter ID law being challenged by the Justice Department. [Video below. Audio here.]
Time magazine demonstrated in its last issue that it was so overwhelmingly thrilled with John Roberts upholding ObamaCare that it put Roberts on the cover with the title “Roberts Rules,” touting his “landmark decision.” Inside, the magazine gave the ruling 15-plus pages of coverage.
By contrast, the Congress voting to hold Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt for failing to deliver documents on the “Fast & Furious” program drew two dismissive paragraphs – one less paragraph than Time editor Richard Stengel took to boost Roberts as a chip off the old block of “John Marshall, the greatest of all Chief Justices” in an Editor’s Note:
On Sunday morning's Melissa Harris-Perry show on MSNBC, the host noted angrily that 17 Democrats voted to hold Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt of Congress for failing to produce documents in the Fast & Furious scandal. Harris-Perry brought on Rep. Emanuel Cleaver (D-Mo.), chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus, to ask him if it wouldn't be better for the Democrats to go "without" the moderate-to-conservative Blue Dogs in favor of a "more easily corralled group."
Harris demanded all Democrats need to "get on the same page" before the Democrats convene in Charlotte in September, and nearly omnipresent MSNBC guest Karen Finney suggested the 17 anti-Holder Democrats were all terrified of the NRA and other outside spending groups:
On Friday's NBC Today co-host Matt Lauer didn't just lob a softball to Obama campaign advisor David Axelrod about Attorney General Eric Holder being held in contempt of Congress, he placed the ball on a tee and helped Axelrod swing the bat: "Paraphrasing here, Mr. Holder said the American people deserve better. What is the President's reaction to the actions in Congress?"
Axelrod happily spewed White House talking points on the Thursday vote that held Holder in contempt for failing to release documents regarding the Fast and Furious gun-walking scandal: "I think it was an embarrassment to the Congress....They're getting their questions answered, they wanted the confrontation, they wanted the political theater. They ought to be getting to work on the problems that are significant to the American people."
Uniquely among the broadcast network evening newscasts, the NBC Nightly News, not only ran a full report on the House of Representatives vote to hold Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt of Congress, but the network also noted that some Democrats joined Republicans on the vote.
By contrast, ABC's World News and the CBS Evening News only mentioned the dozens of Democrats who walked out of the Capitol in protest as they devoted only about half a minute each to the story.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), while speaking on the House floor opposing the contempt charges of Attorney General Eric Holder, actually botched the name of slain border patrol agent Brian Terry.
As she expressed condolences to his family, Pelosi called him "Brian Tay, Tay, Terry" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Rep. Jim Matheson (D-Utah) broke party lines on Tuesday and announced that he will vote to hold Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt of Congress. Matheson is the first Democrat to come out and publicly condemn Holder. Neither ABC's Good Morning America, CBS's This Morning, nor NBC's Today noted the development today.
On Sunday's NBC Meet the Press, moderator David Gregory led the show's panelists in dismissing the House Government Oversight Committee holding Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt over the Fast and Furious gun-walking scandal as a mere political "distraction" created by Republicans. [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
The committee's chairman, California Republican Congressman Darrell Issa, was also on the panel and interrogated by Gregory: "If you got everything you wanted, what do you think it would prove?....What would you be able to prove? I mean what the White House is saying is this is a fishing expedition, it's to score political points, it's all theater. What can you prove if you get everything you want?"
CNN political contributor Hilary Rosen got a much-needed education about voter ID laws from George Will on ABC's This Week Sunday.
When Rosen echoed the dishonest Democrat talking point that voter ID laws are considered "under the civil rights statutes" to be voter suppression, Will smartly replied, "Let the record show that the Supreme Court, with Justice John Paul Stevens, liberal Justice writing it, said that there is no Constitutional flaw in photo ID voter laws" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Bill Maher said Friday, "Republicans don't care about dead Mexicans."
This came moments after he admitted on HBO's Real Time he didn't know anything about the controversial White House mission known as Fast and Furious "until this week" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
One of the finest examples of how liberal media members really don't know what they're talking about occurred on HBO's Real Time Friday when Reason's Nick Gillespie gave a much-needed education to MSNBC's Rachel Maddow and host Bill Maher on the issue of Fast and Furious.
In the end, Maddow and Maher embarrassed themselves in a fashion that should have both of their respective networks seriously concerned about their qualifications to disseminate information to the public (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Rock 'em sock 'em liberal Ed Schultz continues doing his darndest to unintentionally help conservatives by the simple act of opening his mouth and letting words spill out.
On his radio show yesterday, Schultz finally caught up with the Fast and Furious gun-walking scandal that's been brewing for 18 months since the murder of border agent Brian Terry (audio clips after page break).
"There’s a reason you don’t know much about the complicated and confusing mess known as 'Fast and Furious,'” wrote conservative columnist John Podhoretz at the New York Post Thursday.
"The mainstream media have largely ignored this Obama administration scandal, which would have dominated mainstream front pages and homepages and programs for months had it all taken place under a Republican administration."
Following President Obama’s decision to use executive privilege to shield Attorney General Eric Holder from turning over documents to Congress, the mainstream media can no longer continue its media blackout of the Fast and Furious scandal.
Asserting executive privilege "has several immediate effects" upon the public's awareness of a scandal the media have heretofore largely ignored, Fox News contributor Charles Krauthammer observed on the Wednesday edition of Fox News Channel's Special Report.
Steve Kornacki, who will debut as a new MSNBC host on Monday, appeared on Hardball, Thursday, to smear conservative opposition to Eric Holder and Barack Obama as racist. Asked why some on the right oppose the attorney general, Kornacki derided the "caricature of Obama" as a "secret black radical" who is trying to "take away rights or...money from, you know, from white people."
Kornacki saw an "aspect of race and culture" to the conservative disdain. In a discussion of the Fast and Furious scandal, Kornacki simplified, "...You take, you know, prominent, you know, black lawyer and you put him in charge of the Obama Justice Department and I think that's, to you know, to people who sort of traffic in that sort of thing, you know, it really is kind of a lightening rod." [UPDATED with video below. MP3 audio here.]
It appears as though CNN anchor Soledad O’Brien has joined the ranks in +the liberal media who argue that the GOP is engaging in a political witch hunt over the lethal Fast and Furious gun-walking scandal. During an interview with Sen. Chuck Grassley this morning, Soledad pressed the Iowa Republican about GOP congressmen's motives behind the contempt of Congress vote against Attorney General Eric Holder.
O'Brien hyped Maryland Democratic Congressman Elijah Cummings's charge that the the House GOP's vote for the contempt charge was purely partisan politics. O'Brien agreed, noting the partisan breakdown of the contempt vote. [Video coming soon. MP3 audio here.]
Leading off Wednesday's NBC Nightly News, anchor Brian Williams could barely conceal his contempt for Attorney General Eric Holder being held in contempt by the House Government Oversight Committee: "Washington has blown up into a caustic partisan fight....And for those not following the complexities of all of it, it just looks like more of our broken politics and vicious fights now out in the open."
NBC News should be included in the category of "those not following the complexities of all of it" when it comes to covering the Fast and Furious gun running scandal at the heart of the contempt charge. Wednesday night marked the first full story the network offered on the subject, having completely ignored the controversy until June 12, with a 30-second mention of the failed operation at the end of a report.
ABC and NBC's morning shows on Thursday actually noticed something interesting was happening with the Fast and Furious scandal. Both networks covered the vote by a House committee to hold Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt. However, Good Morning America and Today spent more time focusing on a heat wave hitting the east coast than they did the controversy involving a murdered border agent.
Good Morning America allowed a scant minute and 21 seconds for Fast and Furious, but that was only after first touting, for two minutes and 49 seconds, warm weather in the summer. NBC's Today featured a single report on the swirling controversy (one minute, 58 seconds), but only following two minutes and seven seconds on people sweating. News reader Natalie Morales highlighted the congressional action as partisan: "...A Republican-lead House panel voted along party lines to cite [Holder] for contempt of Congress."
On Wednesday's CBS Evening News, after a report in which it was noted that the Obama administration has invoked executive privilege over the investigation into the Fast and Furious scandal, anchor Scott Pelley related the history of other Presidents taking similar measures.
After tying in George Washington, Pelley ended up informing viewers that Bill Clinton had used similar tactics 14 times - more than twice the number of Richard Nixon and George W. Bush. Pelley:
Conservative author and constitutional attorney Mark Levin, in response to President Obama's controversial decision to invoke executive privilege regarding Fast and Furious information being withheld from Congress by Attorney General Eric Holder, posted a legal opinion concerning this matter at his Facebook page Wednesday.
It follows in its entirety with the author's permission.
NBC's Today kept up its complete omission of the Fast and Furious gun-running controversy on Wednesday, even as a House committee prepared to vote later in the day on whether to find Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt of Congress. CBS This Morning stood among the Big Three morning newscasts in devoting a full report to the issue. ABC's Good Morning America gave only a 20-second news brief on the controversy.
Overall, NBC has punted on the story since December 2010, when the scandal first emerged. NBC Nightly News had its own blackout on Fast and Furious until June 12, 2012, when correspondent Kelly O'Donnell finally mentioned "Congress's investigation of a failed operation that sent U.S. guns into Mexico" during a 30-second news brief. The issue hasn't been mentioned since on the evening newscast.
Back in 2009, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder said we were "a nation of cowards" on matters of race. Permit me to be brave and run a few assertions by you just to see whether we're on the same page. There should be two standards for civilized conduct: one for whites, which is higher, and another for blacks, which is lower. In other words, in the name of justice and fair play, blacks should not be held accountable to the same standards that whites are and should not be criticized for conduct that we'd deem disgusting and racist if said or done by whites.
You say, "Williams, what in the world are you talking about?" Mitt Romney hasn't revealed all of his fall campaign strategy yet, but what if he launched a "White Americans for Romney" movement in an effort to get out the white vote? If the Romney campaign did that, there'd be a media-led outcry across the land, with charges ranging from racial insensitivity to outright racism. When President Barack Obama announced his 2012 launch of "African Americans for Obama" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BdjoHA5ocwU), the silence was deafening. Should the same standards be applied to Obama as would be applied to Romney? The answer turns out to be no, because Obama is not held to the same standards as Romney.
Update [12:52 ET]: Former RNC Chairman Michael Steele followed Bernard's lead in MSNBC's noon hour by claiming the Fast & Furious investigation was "not good" for the House GOP. Video below and audio here.
In an attempt to twist the Obama administration's Fast & Furious gun running scandal into bad news for Republicans, on Wednesday's The Daily Rundown on MSNBC supposed Republican pundit Michelle Bernard proclaimed: "...when you think about just the damage that has been done over the last year to the GOP's brand, this is just another – adds more fuel to the fire." [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
Bernard was referring to the possibility of Attorney General Eric Holder being held in contempt of Congress for not providing documents about the failed policy to lawmakers. Instead of questioning the White House, Bernard continued to rant: "...this is just another thing that I think gives the Obama administration and the Obama campaign a little bit more fuel to go to the American public and say, 'Why won't they just do their job? We don't elect members of the Congress to come in and beat up on the Attorney General and be obstructionists. Ask them to do their job and back off of Eric Holder.' It makes no sense."
Liberal MSNBC anchor Chris Matthews on Tuesday slimed the House GOP investigating Attorney General Eric Holder as racist, insisting that the possible contempt charges over Fast and Furious had an "ethnic" feel. Using charged, racial imagery, Matthews demonized, "Is this sort of stop-and-frisk at the highest level? Go after the attorney general, get him to empty his pockets, stand in the spotlight."
The Hardball host, who had previously been ignoring the Fast and Furious scandal, changed course and portrayed the whole thing as a bigoted witch hunt. Talking to former San Francisco Mayor Willie Brown, Matthews speculated: "I don't want to start too much forest fire here, but it is my instinct: Is this ethnic, Mr. Mayor?" [See video below. MP3 audio here.]
Remember all the cries in the past for governmental transparency by the "progressive" media? Well, when it comes to the Department of Justice lack of transparency in refusing to turn over documents related to Operation Fast and Furious, Rolling Stone writer Jillian Rayfield excuses it away by claiming that the demand is really due to a GOP 'war' on Eric Holder:
A big part of the show is demonizing Holder himself. Several Republicans have recently called for Holder to step down, among them Johnny Isakson (R-GA), Orrin Hatch (R-UT), and Jon Cornyn (R-TX), who did so to Holder's face in a Senate Judiciary hearing just last week. In one Republican primary debate, Rick Perry and Rick Santorum also both called for Holder's resignation. Romney, for his part, has steered clear of the issue so far, but he won't be able to for long if RNC Chair Reince Priebus gets his way. Priebus says that "Fast and Furious" will be a central 2012 campaign theme, so even if the contempt proceedings go away, it doesn't look like Holder will be off the hook anytime soon.