At Wednesday’s White House press briefing, ABC’s Jonathan Karl asked point-blank if the Obama administration’s handling of Syria has been an “absolute failure.” ABC didn’t report the exchange on Wednesday evening, however.
Karl asked White House press secretary Jay Carney, “isn’t it time to acknowledge that easing the humanitarian crisis in Syria, that the President’s policy has been an absolute failure?” He cited national intelligence chief James Clapper, who told Congress that the crisis has become an “apocalyptic disaster.” Carney bristled and defended the administration’s record.
Michael McAuliff, a former New York Daily News reporter who now writes for the liberal Huffington Post website, stated on Wednesday that people who oppose the Affordable Care Act refer to a report released by the Congressional Budget Office that the shift of full-time employees to part-time work would result in employees losing working hours equivalent to about 2.5 million jobs during the next 10 years, “thereby raising unemployment and forcing others to pay for their health care, and adding to the federal deficit.”
However, McAuliff -- who covers Congress and politics for the site -- quoted CBO director Douglas Elmendorf, who in a hearing on Wednesday “asserted that this is not so: His office's report, he noted, says that ObamaCare will actually produce a net increase in employment and cut the deficit” while giving workers the freedom to do things most Americans praise, such as spending more time with their children or starting their own businesses.
The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office released a report this morning projecting among other things, that 2.5 million Americans will drop out of full-time work thanks to ObamaCare. We will, of course, track how the broadcast networks cover this story, but if the news websites for ABC, CBS, and NBC are any indication, they will downplay and/or heavily spin this development.
For its part, for example, ABCNews.com teased a February 4 AP story with the headline "Modest Drop in Full-Time Work Seen From Health Law" in their "latest news" sidebar. By contrast, CBSNews.com was front and center with the CBO story, their teaser headline declaring, "New report stokes debate on Obamacare, jobs" [see screen captures below page break]
For the past several months, ABC’s Jonathan Karl has been engaged in an ongoing battle with White House Press Secretary Jay Carney. The Chief White House Correspondent for ABC News has been one of the few reporters from the “big three” networks who has been consistent in questioning the Obama White House.
Filling in for George Stephanopoulos as moderator of This Week on January 26, Karl continued his tradition of pushing Jay Carney for answers during an exclusive interview with the press secretary. During the interview Karl called out Carney for the lack of access the Obama Administration gives the media, and asked the former Time Magazine reporter turned Obama propagandist whether “Jay Carney would fight with Jay Carney?”
Sharyl Attkisson uncovered another Obama administration falsehood about ObamaCare on Tuesday's CBS This Morning, spotlighting a 2010 document from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services which "estimated ObamaCare would collectively reduce the number of people with employer-sponsored health coverage by about 14 million". This is contrary to the White House's "repeated assurances that nothing will change for those insured through work".
Attkisson featured the cases of two small business owners who had to discontinue the health insurance plans for their employees, including a New Hampshire woman who "remains an avid ObamaCare supporter", despite the problems with HealthCare.gov. [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
On Thursday, CBS's Sharyl Attkisson reported on Twitter that the White House Correspondents Association, along with "dozens of associations & media outlets", sent a letter of protest to White House Press Secretary Jay Carney. Attkisson outlined in subsequent Tweets that the letter blasted the Obama administration for restricting the access of photojournalists at certain presidential events, "while releasing government photos and videos of the same events".
Politico's Hadas Gold posted the full text of the letter to Carney in a Thursday item, which was signed by "leading media outlets like ABC, CBS, CNN, Fox News, The Associated Press, Reuters, The New York Times, The Washington Post and Yahoo News". In the letter, the WHCA board asserted that the Obama White House's policy was a "troubling break from tradition", and hinted that it ran counter to the President's claim that his was "the most transparent administration in history":
A frustrated Jay Carney on Monday excoriated ABC's Jon Karl for exposing the fact that signing up for health care via phone or mail is just as difficult as signing up by the website. Karl began by quoting the President suggesting in late October that "you can bypass the website and apply by phone or in person." The journalist highlighted newly acquired memos admitting that "at the end of the day, we're all stuck in the same queue because all those applications have to go through the same website."
In a sneering tone that mocked Karl's cadence, Carney retorted, "Jon, I get it! But the person who calls isn't the one who continues to wait after the paper application is filled? Right?" Karl calmly responded, "Your mocking is entertaining, but the President said you could apply within 25 minutes. That was not true." [See video below. MP3 audio here.] Seemingly looking for help from the other journalists, Carney derided, "I think everyone else is looking quizzical because there's a reason to be quizzical here. You call up. You give your information. You get the questions answered and then they take over from there."
It's becoming clearer and clearer that some media members are very interested in stories about the disaster that is the so-called "Affordable Care Act."
On CNN's Anderson Cooper 360 Tuesday, investigative reporter Drew Griffin exposed allegations that the White House is pressuring insurance companies to not publicly criticize ObamaCare (video follows with transcript and commentary):
British import Piers Morgan showed himself to be a left-wing hack on Monday night when he openly stated his support for ObamaCare on his eponymous CNN program Piers Morgan Live. The host brought on White House Press Secretary Jay Carney and asked a couple of critical questions about the rollout of the health care law. However, it soon became apparent that Morgan’s criticism came from his desire to see the law succeed.
After one defensive answer from Carney, Morgan let the press secretary know that he was sympathetic to the president’s health care industry overhaul: “ I agree with you. You haven’t got to persuade me.” Morgan then explicitly declared himself an ObamaCare supporter: [See video below the break.]
It’s becoming increasingly clear that after 21 days of the Healthcare.gov train wreck, President Obama’s media – with the exception of MSNBC, of course! – are not interested in carrying his water regarding the website’s failure.
During Monday’s press briefing, ABC’s chief White House correspondent Jonathan Karl told a defensive press secretary Jay Carney, “You can’t really charge people a fine for not getting health insurance if you don’t fix this mess” (video follows with transcribed highlights and commentary):
The White House is apparently so desperate to pump anything positive about the disaster known as HealthCare.gov that it took a reporter's ability to "set up an account" as proof that the web site is working fine for some users.
Uh, no. Early Thursday afternoon, Ryan Lizza, the Washington correspondent for The New Yorker (also the guy who may have been in the best position to prove that Barack Obama was lying when he said in 2008 that he never read the church bulletins at the Rev. Jeremiah Wright's Trinity United Church of Christ, and passed), tweeted the following: "I just tested http://healthcare.gov for the first time and I was able to set up an account with no trouble." Well, setting up an account is a step, but is hardly the end of a HealthCare.gov user's journey. As seen at Twitchy, that didn't stop White House press secretary Jay Carney and senior communications adviser Tara McGuinness from retweeting Lizza's tweet — except Lizza wasn't done, and got stopped dead in his tracks when he tried to move on:
Friday's CBS This Morning zeroed in on a HealthCare.gov glitch that is jeopardizing the privacy of millions of Americans. Jan Crawford noted how the "glitches have, in fact, made the website unusable for most", but also pointed out that "the problems go beyond the enrollment process. Most troubling...insurance companies report receiving duplicate sign-up...and records of people enrolling, un-enrolling, and then, re-enrolling. Those forms contain highly personal information."
Crawford also underlined that these "duplicate and incomplete enrollment forms" are indications that the "problems are pervasive" with the ObamaCare website. [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
Talk about your government shutdown. Conservatives would have enjoyed watching liberal TV reporters sputter if President Bush had completely skipped the first row of reporters and picked only friendly reporters, even writers for conservative blog sites. But the media elites would have thrown a major tantrum about censorship -- including Jay Carney in his tenure at Time magazine.
Put the shoe on the other foot, and the liberal media is pretty quiet. President Obama failed to call on TV reporters at his Wednesday press conference, even though he came to The Huffington Post for a shoe-shine question. Then Tommy Christopher at Mediaite pointed out White House press briefer Jay Carney aggressively ignored Ed Henry of Fox News twice at Friday’s briefing, so he walked out:
Just hours before the Senate voted to approve a measure that was passed by the House on Wednesday in a 425-0 vote to restore the death benefits paid to the families of fallen soldiers, liberal radio talk show host Bill Press showed his true colors when he said it would be a “big mistake” for the government to do that because “once the government starts making special exceptions, it allows the shutdown to continue.”
In a stumble similar to one Senate majority leader Harry Reid made last week, when the Nevada Democrat accused CNN reporter Dana Bash of being “irresponsible” and “reckless” for asking if he would help “one child who has cancer” and is receiving treatment through the NIH, Press stated: “When you shut down the government, a lot of great things are not going to get done, and why should we make an exception for those that just happen to pop up and get a lot of media attention?”
Today, White House Press Secretary Jay Carney had a tense exchange with ABC's Jonathan Karl, who was apparently so taken aback by Carney's answer to another reporter that he interjected himself into the dialog — to correct Carney about what House Speaker John Boehner said earlier today about his openness to negotiating. Carney also announced that Americans won't have to wait to see how the nation's healthcare delivery system changes in 2014 to experience long times spent in waiting rooms (Patience, please; it will become clear later in the post). But first, let's get the Blaze's rundown of the Carney-Karl exchange (bolds are mine):
During his Monday briefing with reporters in the White House, press secretary Jay Carney was asked several times how president Barack Obama would respond to a partial government shutdown. The most interesting query came from Cable News Network's senior White House correspondent Jim Costa, who asked if the Democrats have been using heightened rhetoric to attack Republicans and “trying to taunt” the GOP into doing a shutdown.
“In the last couple of weeks, Democrats including the president have -- and he has not used all these words but I’ll throw out some of them -- have referred to Republicans as arsonists, anarchists, extortionists, blackmailers, hostage takers,” Acosta noted. Even Dan Pfeiffer, assistant to the president and senior advisor to the president for strategy and communications, “talked about bombs being strapped to chests.”
White House press secretary Jay Carney appeared on MSNBC’s Morning Joe Tuesday expressing the typical doom and gloom about what the government shutdown means to Americans and the economy.
After he was done, CNBC’s Michelle Caruso-Cabrera told the MJ crew about how the markets were shrugging off the shutdown due to its likely limited impact on the economy and punctuated her thoughts by saying, “Jay Carney’s been fear mongering on your network” (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Washington Post reporters Paul Farhi and Billy Kenber caused a morning cereal spew inside the Beltway. In a story about the revolving door between reporters and Team Obama, there was this unintentional laugh line from Jay Carney: “But I think any reading of my coverage as a reporter would show that I was not an ideologue. [Time columnist] Joe Klein said he thought I was a Republican” when Carney joined Biden’s staff.
See my dossier on how Carney found Hillary was “strangely mesmerizing" as “the polite but passionate American citizen,” or how Bill Clinton was “probably the best white politician out there speaking on race issues.” (That sounds exactly like Joe Klein.) The Posties quoted Rush Limbaugh decrying the obvious media-Obama mindmeld, then lamely tried to argue their way out of that reality:
When on today's Morning Joe, Obama spokesman Jay Carney had the chutzpah to call the IRS mess a "phony scandal,"Joe Scarborough ripped into him, calling Carney out for using "talking points," instructing him to "answer my question" and informing Carney that "I'm not somebody you talk down to from your podium." Ouch! H/t NB reader cobokat.
Scarborough reminded Carney that he hadn't told the truth when he initially claimed that the scandal was limited to low-level employees in the IRS Cincinnati office, that it now appears that it may go at least as high as the IRS Chief Counsel, appointed by President Obama, is involved. Carney continued to slough off the scandal, claiming it was a diversion and that the President wants to focus on the economy, blah, blah, blah. Things got heated, as you'll see from the video, after the jump.
The main function of a White House press secretary is to distribute information for the administration, which often requires answering difficult questions. Apparently, no one knows this better than Jay Carney, the current spokesman for President Obama.
According to a study by Yahoo News -- which is by no means a conservative outlet -- Carney has dodged answering reporters' questions 9,486 times in the 444 briefings he's held since his first press conference on Feb. 16, 2011, by using 13 different methods, ranging from saying “I don't have the answer … ” 1,905 times to “The president won't tell me … ” on 117 occasions.
Not content with using her roles as managing editor and moderator of the “Washington Week” program and as a senior correspondent for the “PBS NewsHour,” Ifill took her crusade online on Sunday, when she posted on Twitter that it's “Fun to see the same (named & unnamed) folks calling for Holder resignation who always have” and asserted that “people don't want to know the details back and forth” of the IRS targeting.
As NewsBusters reported Sunday, Congressman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) on CNN’s State of the Union called White House press secretary Jay Carney a “paid liar.”
On Fox News’s Special Report Monday, syndicated columnist Charles Krauthammer took issue with Issa saying, “I’ve argued here for months that Carney is majorly underpaid, and I think that really is the problem” (video follows with transcript and absolutely no need for additional commentary):
A classic case of MSM jujitsu. Yesterday, Darrell Issa called Jay Carney a "paid liar." So did Morning Joe today dig down to see if Issa was right? Of course not. Instead, its focus was on Issa--how he is "overreaching," "overplaying," etc. H/t NB reader Wayne T.
The quintessential statement came from Mika Brzezinski, who actually said that Issa's accusation "makes us all want to walk away and ignore" the White House scandals. It's not as if Mika & Co. needed much convincing! View the video after the jump, along with a medley of statements from Mika, Brian Shactman, Joe Scarborough, Jon Meacham, Chuck Todd and Robert Gibbs along similar lines.
The role of the White House press secretary is to disseminate information to the media, and that should be an especially important function when the president and his administration are plagued by several scandals.
However, Jay Carney has only held six press conferences in the past three weeks, far fewer than usual. In addition, the press secretary only held two brief “gaggles” during presidential trips to New Jersey and New York. Could this be happening because the people in the usually compliant media are actually asking tough questions and demanding clear answers?
Fox News senior White House correspondent Ed Henry said Friday that when he used to grill George W. Bush press secretaries Dana Perino and the late Tony Snow when he was working for CNN, his colleagues cheered him on in private.
"Then when I was at Fox covering the Obama administration," he told conservative radio host Laura Ingraham, "it can get a little bit lonely sometimes" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
The Washington Post carried a huge, almost life-size picture of Jay Carney’s head in the Style section on Friday. But it was designed as a pick-me-up for the embattled Obama spinner. It was a story about...Carney and his favorite rock band.
“Benghazi and the IRS have kept Carney scrambling, and he hasn’t had much time to listen to ‘English Little League,’ the latest album from the Ohio indie-rock band [Guided by Voices] he has affectionately name-dropped in more than one news briefing.” Critics want Carney canned, but the Post wants him to feel happy about the “beer-soaked brilliance” of his favorite rockers: