While the media "are treating him as a serious and substantive person," they are erroneously tagging Romney running mate Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) "as a budget slasher," which is patently false, NewsBusters senior editor Tim Graham told Fox Business Network's Stuart Varney this morning.
"There isn't any slashing [in the Ryan plan]. There's a reduction in [the rate of] growth" of government, the Media Research Center director of media analysis noted. [watch the full segment below]
Earlier today (at NewsBusters; at BizzyBlog), I noted how the Associated Press's Steve Peoples and Politico's Juana Summers could only find hundreds of people attending GOP vice-presidential pick Paul Ryan's Wednesday appearance at Oxford, Ohio's Miami University. Perhaps even more troubling is how they somehow chose an odd angle for their coverage, namely that Ryan has supposedly avoiding talking about Medicare in his stump speeches -- and both wrote "that changed" in describing its first mention.
It seems more than a little odd that two establishment press reporters from supposedly separate and independent media outlets both apparently focused for four days on when Ryan would mention the word "Medicare" on the campaign trail. Summers even made it her headline, while Peoples seemed to want to convey the impression that Ryan has been afraid to mention the word:
UPDATE: In its video report, but not in its accompanying text, Cincinnati Local 12 News reported that the crowd was over 6,000, and that "a whole line of people were turned away, because there wasn't enough room."
It would appear that Politico's Juana Summers and the Associated Press's Steve Peoples have an unusual and nearly identical problem with math. Yesterday, they could have and should have gone to the Secret Service for help. (Also, go to this subsequent post about how the pair also played a very odd duet in supposedly independently written stories, both attempting to portray Republican vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan as avoiding the topic of Medicare on the campaign trail.)
Summers wrote that Ryan's appearance yesterday at Miami University drew "several hundred supporters gathered for an outdoor rally." Peoples claimed it was "hundreds of supporters." After the jump, I will note several media outlets which reported that the crowd numbered in the "thousands" -- including one which cited a Secret Service estimate of 5,500.
Comedy Central's Jon Stewart asked NBC Nightly News anchor Brian Williams the $64 trillion question on Wednesday's Daily Show.
"What is preventing the media from discussing more substantive issues before the introduction of Paul Ryan, and then since the introduction, and then, let's say, you know, after the election?" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
At least Barney didn't accuse Paul Ryan of going all Twilight on starving children, or of actually pouring kerosene on burning buildings.
No, appearing on Al Sharpton's MSNBC show today, the retiring Dem congressman contented himself by claiming that Ryan opposes people coming together to feed poor children or put out fires. View the video after the jump.
Mitt Romney has outdone himself in choosing Rep. Paul Ryan as his running mate. The conservative base is ecstatic, and that will translate into voter intensity and high turnout.
Our country faces an unprecedented debt crisis, primarily driven by our entitlement programs. We have more than $100 trillion of unfunded liabilities — a staggering, incomprehensible number — and we are on a collision course with national bankruptcy.
There were some stark contrasts on the campaign trail in Wednesday's New York Times. After Vice President Joe Biden warned a racially mixed south Virginia audience of the Republican ticket: "They're going to put y'all back in chains." A five-paragraph brief on Biden's comments by Rebecca Berg made page A14 Wednesday, including a brief quote of Mitt Romney's counterattack on the Obama camp in Chillicothe, Ohio, under the soporific headline "A Metaphor Draws Notice."
Berg helpfully corrected Biden's grammar by removing the veep's condescending second-person plural Southernism ("y'all"), replacing it with the more standard "you all." By contrast, the exchange was highlighted in a front-page Washington Post article, which retained Biden's contraction.
Beginning an otherwise positive story on Wednesday's NBC Today about vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan's intense exercise regimen, P90X, correspondent Kelly O'Donnell managed to work in this jab: "He's doing a workout you've probably seen all over late night TV. Call it extreme. And we're not talking about his politics here." [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
Was Soledad O'Brien borrowing from liberal Talking Points Memo again? She was caught red-handed doing so Monday night, and her challenge to Romney's budget on Wednesday's Starting Point seemed awfully similar to TPM's take on the matter.
O'Brien not only echoed TPM's liberal criticisms of Romney's budget, but featured a Fox News clip that TPM quoted from the heart of its piece titled "Paul Ryan Can't Escape Own Budget Package In Debut Solo Interview." [Video below the break.]
In an interview with Republican National Committee chair Reince Priebus on Wednesday's NBC Today, co-host Savannah Guthrie slammed Paul Ryan's proposed budget: "And the Ryan budget makes some very hard decisions and has some huge spending cuts....But how can you justify in the Ryan budget defense spending that stays flat and then giving a massive tax cut, which predominantly benefits the wealthy?" [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
In reality, Ryan's budget does not include "huge spending cuts," but simply slows the rate of growth of government spending. That was a "nuance" that NBC political director Chuck Todd made sure to point out on Monday as he attempted to diffuse Republican attacks on the President for taking Medicare funds to pay for ObamaCare.
Jesus Christ would favor a tax rate as little as 50 percent and as high as 100 percent. So really, President Obama's preferred tax rates are a bargain. That's one of the big "idea" of Erika Christakis's August 14 Time magazine Ideas blog post, "Is Paul Ryan's Budget 'Un-Christian'?"
Christakis has a master's in education but apparently hasn't a clue about exegeting Scripture, nor does she seem to care. Jesus is just a convenient figure to use to make a flawed political talking point:
Jay Leno took some cheap shots at America's leading Republicans Tuesday.
During his Tonight Show monologue filled with jokes about the GOP's presumptive presidential nominee, Leno said, "Ever since it was announced that Sarah Palin will not be speaking at the Republican convention the Romney campaign has been flooded with thousands of texts and emails demanding she be allowed to speak - all from President Obama" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Bill Maher made it clear Tuesday that when Real Time returns from vacation on HBO this Friday, Paul Ryan will be a prime target of his attacks.
Speaking with the Huffington Post, the typically stoned comedian said, "This is the intellectual?...Somehow he's the smartest guy in the Party and [Sarah Palin's] the stupidest woman on earth, but they agree on everything" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
On Saturday's World News, ABC correspondent Jonathan Karl informed viewers that former Democratic President Bill Clinton had spoken favorably to Republican Rep. Paul Ryan about his budget plan that is so unpopular with other Democrats.
After recounting President Barack Obama's history of clashing with Rep. Ryan, Karl continued:
Mitt Romney made a smart executive decision selecting Paul Ryan as his vice-presidential running mate. Ryan’s genial personality, serious policy wonkery, and political courage have dazzled conservatives and won respect even in a few liberal circles. Romney scores points for political courage as well. He knew liberal politicians and journalists would talk in punishing terms about Ryan’s budget ideas.
They did not disappoint. It took only minutes for the onslaught to begin. At the same time liberal media outlets acknowledge the country now faces two opposing visions of government, why is only the Romney-Ryan vision “polarizing” and “extreme”?
A cartoonish Chris Matthews on Tuesday managed to mangle a historical analogy and spew liberal propaganda at the same time as he offered this ridiculous assessment of Paul Ryan: "This guy could be worse than Quayle, more trouble than Tom Eagleton." [See video below. MP3 audio here.] Worse than Dan Quayle, who was successfully elected vice president in 1988? "More trouble" than Eagleton, the 1972 Democratic vice presidential candidate who was thrown off the ticket after 18 days? (Eagleton, in earlier years, had been treated for depression with electroshock therapy.)
Matthews' argument, history aside, ignores individuals such as John Edwards, who recently avoided going to jail and who cheated on his cancer-stricken, now-dead wife during a 2004 run for vice president. The current vice president is incredibly gaffe prone, a man who credited "President" Franklin Roosevelt for going on "television" after the stock market crashed. (FDR wasn't president and television hadn't been introduced to the public.)
Last Thursday's Wall Street Journal editorial "Why Not Paul Ryan?" made the case for his selection as the Republican vice-presidential nominee in this statement: "Romney can win a big election over big issues. He'll lose a small one."
After Ryan's serious proposal to restructure Medicare -- which virtually everyone knows must be reformed -- the response from Democrats was an unserious TV ad, which showed a Ryan look-alike pushing an old woman in a wheelchair over a cliff.
Rep. Paul Ryan's 100 percent rating by the pro-life National Right to Life Committee and his support of the "Protect Life Act" are evidence of the Wisconsin Republican's extremism on abortion and as such, should hurt the appeal of the Romney/Ryan ticket with women voters, MSNBC's Alex Wagner argued on the August 14 edition of her noon Eastern Now with Alex Wagner program.
Of course the 100 percent pro-choice record that Barack Obama has with NARAL Pro-Choice America might strike centrist voters as equally "extreme," but Wagner failed to note Obama has never deviated from the NARAL line. What's more, as a state senator, Barack Obama voted AGAINST an Illinois state version of the "Born-Alive Act" which was designed to punish abortionists who kill babies who were born before the abortion procedure was finished in utero. Nothing says pro-abortion extremist like voting against a bill to penalize infanticide, especially considering that a federal version of the bill passed the U.S. Congress in 2002 without any votes in the negative. [MP3 audio here; video follows page break]
The name James Holm -- not to be confused with accused Aurora gunman James Holmes -- might ring a bell for NewsBusters readers.
Holm first came to our attention back in December 2010 with his alarming suggestion that President Obama "put a gun" to the heads of CEOs sitting on $1.9 trillion in capital reserves. (audio clip after page break)
Leading off Monday's NBC Nightly News, anchor Brian Williams struck a patronizing tone as he noted "things get rough for the new guy on the trail" Paul Ryan, with "incoming fire on his own record and a not so warm welcome to the big leagues during his appearance today at the Iowa state fair."
In the report that followed, correspondent Peter Alexander seized on protestors showing up at a Ryan stump speech in the state: "Ryan campaigned on his first solo stop at the Iowa state fair, largely ignoring hecklers, several of whom rushed the stage."
Instead of fact-checking President Obama's dishonest attack on Paul Ryan for blocking a farm bill, CNN simply reported it three times on Tuesday morning. Correspondent Brianna Keilar actually repeated the false attack in her own words.
"[T]hey [the House] failed to pass a bill for drought relief, which as you know is huge right now because of all of the farmers, all of the cattle ranchers who are suffering through this terrible drought in the Midwest," Keilar said, ignoring that the House did pass a different drought relief bill and Ryan voted for it. [Video below the break.]
In September 2011, New York Times columnist Paul Krugman told CNN's Gloria Borger that Rep. Paul Ryan's Medicare voucher plan "would kill people, no question." As you can imagine, he's not terribly happy about Romney picking Ryan as his running mate.
Krugman can't even bear fellow liberals offering grudging praise to Ryan. discussing on a Monday morning blog post "a lamentable but revealing column by William Saletan, which illustrates perfectly how the essentially ludicrous Paul Ryan has gotten so far – namely, by playing to the gullibility of self-proclaimed centrists, who want to show their 'balance' by finding a conservative to praise."
When CNN isn't reading liberal talking points about the Romney-Ryan ticket, it's resorting to using conservative friendly fire against the Ryan budget, like Piers Morgan did on Monday.
Morgan baited Newt Gingrich by asking "it is a radical form of social engineering, isn't it?" after he played a clip of Gingrich ripping the Ryan budget as "radical change" – a statement Gingrich later recanted. It was also one Morgan happened to agree with. [Video below the break.]
In an interview with former House speaker Newt Gingrich on Tuesday's NBC Today, co-host Matt Lauer worried about vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan's commitment to conservative principles: "I've heard Paul Ryan described as a true conservative....Do you honestly think he is someone who will work and reach across the aisle to Democrats or will he be an immovable object on key social issues and issues of ideology?"
Less than twelve hours after getting caught reading from a liberal blog during a heated debate with a Romney adviser, CNN's Soledad O'Brien was back on the air Tuesday echoing Democrat talking points.
In fact, things got so hot with former New Hampshire Governor John Sununu (R) on CNN's Starting Point that he ended up saying, "Put an Obama bumper sticker on your forehead when you do this" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Former New York Times executive editor Bill Keller went after Republicans and the party's "disciplined conservative infrastructure" in his 1,200-word Monday column on Romney's vice presidential pick Paul Ryan – "The Romney Package." Pecking at a multitude of conservative targets, Keller also said Reagan conservative Supreme Court nominee Robert Bork was "attacked (with justification) as a radical," and accused the Swift Boat Veterans for truth of a "slander" against John Kerry in 2004.
Matthew Yglesias has been posting at Slate.com, supposedly a paragon of online establishment press journalism, as a business and economics correspondent since November of last year. His background is unmistakably leftist: ThinkProgress, the Atlantic, TPM Media, and the American Prospect.
On Saturday, a Yglesias found a blog post which was apparently too good to check at The Richmonder, a lefty enterprise run by Jerel Wilmore. The Richmonder's post claimed that "Paul Ryan traded on insider information to avoid 2008 crash" (post has been retracted; excerpt was obtained at democraticunderground.com; some of what follows is also here):
On Morning Joe today, Chris Matthews exposed the ugly face of class warfare politics at its most primal.
Matthews claimed that Paul Ryan wants to "give" money to rich people but "doesn't like" people who depend on government, and indeed, as a conservative, wants to "screw" them. As NewsBuster Brad Wilmouth earlier noted, this isn't the first time Matthews has resorted to this vulgar metaphor. View the video after the jump.
Less than 48 hours after Representative Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.) became GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney's running mate, the liberal group known as The Agenda Project released an updated version of its infamous advertisement showing a man in a suit pushing an elderly woman in a wheelchair off a cliff.
While this move came as no surprise, it's interesting to note that the original version was dubbed “the biggest lie of the year” for 2011 by the liberal PolitiFact Website, which called “the claim by many Democrats that the Republicans voted to end Medicare” as false since the House actually voted to protect Medicare for those 55 years of age and older while privatizing and restructuring it for people who are younger.