On Friday's CBS Evening News, anchor Scott Pelley tagged Rick Santorum as the "very conservative Pennsylvania Senator" as he introduced a full report on the GOP presidential candidate's views on gay rights, abortion, and contraception, with correspondent Dean Reynolds warning that the GOP candidate's views on social issues that helped him in Iowa "have energized his opponents here in New Hampshire."
After noting a recent poll shows Santorum "coming on strong" in the Granite State since his near win in the Iowa caucuses, Pelley, applied the "very conservative" label to the Pennsylvania Republican:
On Friday's CBS Evening News, as correspondent Sharyl Attkisson filed a report to inform viewers that the House of Representatives had approved the Senate plan for a two-month payroll tax cut extension, Attkisson included a clip of Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid directing a "lecture" at and blaming House Republican freshmen for the delay, as she recounted his hope that they had "learned a lesson."
While the report included two soundbites from Democrats that allowed them to put forth some of their message - in the form of one clip each from Reid and President Obama - the CBS correspondent only included a couple of brief non-political clips of House Speaker John Boehner as the only Republican afforded a soundbite. (Video below)
On Monday's The Ed Show, MSNBC host Ed Schultz accused Republican presidential candidates of "fearmongering" on the issue of the danger posed by a nuclear Iran, but, ironically, on the same day the CBS Evening News led its show with an interview with Obama administration Defense Secretary Leon Panetta who hinted at the possibility of a nuclear strike on Iran within the next year because the radical Islamic state is believed capable of assembling a nuclear bomb within that time.
As he interviewed Joe Cirincione of the Ploughshare Fund about the latest on North Korea, Schultz switched over to talking about Iran:
CBS Evening News on Wednesday hyped the "early success" of a provision of ObamaCare which allows young adults under the age of 26 to stay on their parents' health care. Correspondent Wyatt Andrews spotlighted a young woman afflicted with Crohn's disease as an example of this apparent success, all the while failing to mention the liberal agenda of a "patient rights advocate" featured in his report.
The first part of Andrews's report played as a human interest story, focusing on Caryn Powers, "one of those young adults who already benefits from the health care reform act." The journalist highlighted that "Caryn's medicine alone costs more than $3,000 a month. If she could not stay on her parents' health insurance, she says, she'd be bankrupt and unable to work as a nurse."
A few weeks ago, NewsBusters introduced readers to an amazing homeless girl in Florida with a truly inspiring view of life.
Her story, first told by CBS's 60 Minutes, touched so many Americans that Scott Pelley announced at the end of Sunday's program more than $1 million had been sent to various charities in Florida, and colleges have offered full scholarships to the main characters (video follows with transcript and commentary):
As the three broadcast network evening newscasts on Thursday reported former New Jersey Democratic Senator Jon Corzine's testimony before Congress on the billion dollars in investor money that went missing from the financial firm he once headed, only the NBC Nightly News took the time to label him as a Democrat.
“In the presidential campaign,” CBS anchor Scott Pelley announced Thursday night, “President Obama fired back today at Republican opponents who criticized his foreign policy using words like ‘timid,’ ‘weak’ and ‘appeasement.’”
Over on ABC, fill-in anchor David Muir trumpeted “a very pointed response from President Obama” to the charge he’s had a weak foreign policy as an admiring Muir maintained “you can almost see him choosing his words as the question is asked.” Both then played Obama’s response from a late morning news conference:
At the top of Wednesday's NBC Nightly News, anchor Brian Williams fretted: "The Obama administration blocks a plan to make the 'morning-after' pill more easily available to young girls. Is this about medicine, politics or something else?" Moments later, he proclaimed: "We begin tonight with this surprise decision that takes us right to the intersection of medicine, science and politics."
The CBS Evening News also lead with the decision as anchor Scott Pelley hyped: "No White House has ever overruled a safety recommendation by the Food and Drug Administration, but it happened today." In the report that followed, correspondent Wyatt Andrews announced that by overruling the FDA, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, "stunned many public health proponents."
Thursday's CBS Evening News ended with an uplifting report highlighting refugees from Burma who were resettled in the United States to escape ethnic persecution in their home country.
#From the December 18 Good Morning America on ABC:
DAN HARRIS: Good morning, America. This morning, the big endorsement. With little more than two weeks before the Iowa caucuses, Mitt Rommey gets a big boost overnight. with Newt Gingrich's momentum slowing, is this race about to be shaken up yet again?
HARRIS: Let's start with politics. It's "Your Voice, Your Vote." We're about two weeks away now from the Iowa caucuses, the first step on what could be a very, very long road to the Republican nomination. And this morning, one of the Republican candidates picking up a key endorsement. ABC's David Kerley following all the action story overnight. David, good morning to you.
DAVID KERLEY: Good morning, David. In fact, two big endorsements for Mitt Romney. Bob Dole says Romney is his pick. And the biggest newspaper in Iowa, the Des Moines Register, endorsed Romney when he wasn't even in the state. In fact, with this final sprint under way, two of the leading candidates are not in Iowa. Social conservatives in Iowa believe Mitt Romney has ignored their state, but that didn't stop the Democratic-leaning Des Moines Register from endorsing Romney, citing his, quote, "sobriety, wisdom, and judgment." Half a country away, Romney tweeted, quote, "Looking forward to being back in Iowa soon."
Gingrich continues to stir up some controversy. On that conference call yesterday, he said he would abolish some courts that are out of step with the country if he is Pesident.
#From the December 18 World News on ABC:
DAVID MUIR: The war is getting a lot of attention tonight on the campaign trail. With just two weeks till the Iowa caucuses, Mitt Romney criticized Obama for bringing the troops home now. It comes as Romney looks to regain his frontrunner status, and today, he got some help in Iowa. Here's ABC's David Kerley.
DAVID KERLEY: Mitt Romney has logged less time in Iowa than most candidates, but he nabbed the endorsement of the largest paper, which noted what it called his "sobrity, wisdom, and judgment." But it was a scathing review of Newt Gingrich by the Des Moines Register, "an undisciplined partisan who would "alienate not unite."
NEWT GINGRICH: I'm actually delighted because the Manchester Union Leader, which is a reliably conservative newspaper, endorsed me. The Des Moines Register, which is a solidly liberal newspaper, did not endorse me. I think that indicates who the conservative in this race is.
KERLEY: The former House Speaker still leads Iowa polls, but his opponents say he's slipping. Romney, buoyed by the endorsements, including South Carolina's governor, broke a two-year avoidance of the Sunday morning talk shows and showed a softer side when asked about his wife learning she has Multiple Sclerosis.
MITT ROMNEY CLIP #1: Probably the toughest time in my life was standing there with Ann as we hugged each other and the diagnosis came.
ROMNEY CLIP #2: And I said to her, "As long as it's not something fatal, I'm just fine. Look, I'm happy in life as long as I've got my soulmate with me."
KERLEY: Gingrich may be feeling the heat. He had intended to take this weekend off, and, at the last minute, he agreed to that national TV appearance today. David, the holiday dash in Iowa is under way tonight.
#From the December 18 Today show on NBC:
JENNA WOLF, IN OPENING TEASER: Advantage Romney? With just two weeks to go in the Iowa caucuses, Mitt Romney scores two key endorsements, but how much weight will they carry?
WOLF: Turning to politics now at home, the President is enjoying a small victory after the Senate on Saturday extended the payroll tax for two months, this as one Republican presidential candidate picks up what some call a key endorsement. NBC's Mike Viqueira joins us live from the White House with the latest. Mike, good morning.
MIKE VIQUEIRA: Good morning to you, Jenna. It's already been a big weekend in politics, both here in Washington and out on the campaign trail. There was a rare Saturday session of the Senate. The President appeared in the briefing room afterward, after fighting to a temporary standstill with Republicans on extending that payroll tax cut. And, meanwhile, out on the campaign trail, the man the Obama campaign still thinks it's most likely to face in elections next fall picked up some key endorsements.
With the Iowa caucus in a little more than two weeks, last night a major endorsement. The Des Moines Register, Iowa's largest paper, endorsed Mitt Romney, delivering a major boost.
LESTER HOLT: Mitt Romney, by design, did not put a lot of effort in Iowa. Now he's picked up this endorsement from the Des Moines Register. How big a deal is that for him?
DAVID GREGORY: Well, I think nationally it's big in terms of the overall narrative of how's he doing. I think within Iowa it may not have as much effect as it would for a Democratic primary. But it does help Romney begin to make the case here that Iowans should take a hard look at Newt Gingrich, who is still on top of the polls. I think if you're Romney, you may not be able to win Iowa, but what you hope to do is reduce the scale and the size of a Gingrich win in Iowa. And others can help him do that. If Ron Paul does well, if Bachmann gets a decent percentage of the vote, then that Gingrich win in Iowa, should that happen, could be seen as a smaller victory.
#From the December 18 NBC Nightly News:
LESTER HOLT: To presidential politics now, and a major endorsement today for Mitt Romney from Iowa's largest newspaper. It's a shot in the arm for the Romney campaign, hoping to stem the recent surge of Newt Gingrich. NBC's Mike Viqueira now with the latest.
MIKE VIQUEIRA: Entering the home stretch in Iowa, candidates in the back of the pack are racing to catch up. Both Rick Perry and Michele Bachmann are blanketing the state on bus tours, stopping to greet voters, and delivering attacks on frontrunner Newt Gingrich.
MICHELE BACHMANN: He's trying to sound like a conservative, but he's actually sounding more like a 30-year establishment Washington beat insider that he is.
VIQUEIRA: Today, Mitt Romney questioned Gingrich's ability to lead.
MITT ROMNEY: He has been unreliable in those settings and zany. I wouldn't think you'd call mirrors in space to light highways at night particularly practical or a lunar colony a practical idea, not at a stage like this.
VIQUEIRA: This as Gingrich invited more controversy, speaking out in favor of abolishing some courts, allowing presidents to ignore judicial rulings and empowering Congress to subpoena judges.
BOB SCHIEFFER, CBS NEWS: Would you send the Capitol Police now to arrest him?
NEWT GINGRICH: If you had to. Or you'd instruct the Justice Department to send U.S. marshals.
VIQUEIRA: In the past two days, Romney has scored a string of endorsements, including the Des Moines Register, though the paper's record of picking winners is mixed. John McCain was their choice in 2008 over the eventual caucus winner, conservative Mike Huckabee. The backing comes as a welcome boost for the Romney campaign.
RICK GREEN, DES MOINES REGISTER: Through all that we have seen and heard from Governor Romney, he was very measured, very focused on what we think is the most pressing issue in front of all of us, and that's the economy.
VIQUEIRA: And, Lester, you might be surprised to learn that Newt Gingrich pronounced himself delighted that the Des Moines Register endorsed his rival, Mitt Romney. He calls it a solidly liberal paper and points out New Hampshire's Manchester Union Leader, known to be much more conservative editorially, has endorsed him. Lester?
HOLT: Mike Viqueira at the White House. Mike, thanks.
After recounting the help Christian organizations in Kentucky have provided for refugees, correspondent Seth Doane concluded his report with a soundbite of Dr. Mahn Myint Saing, who runs a successful Thai restaurant in Louisville, Kentucky, as he declared that America is the "best place to live in the world."
Earlier in the report, referring to a teenage refugee, Doane had also related:
Eh-Nay-Thaw is among several hundred refugees from Burma who've been embraced by Crescent Hill Baptist Church. Officially resettled as refugees, they come here with full legal status, welcome to work, welcome to go to school, welcome to stay.
Below is a complete transcript of the report from the Thursday, December 1, CBS Evening News:
SCOTT PELLEY: Finally tonight, America has always been a beacon for those escaping persecution. Since 1990, 92,000 refugees have fled the brutal regime in Burma to settle right here. And we asked Seth Doane to introduce us.
SETH DOANE: A lot of folks think it's the best Thai restaurant in Louisville. Simply Thai gets terrific press, but the real story here is not the food. You were a physician in Burma. You run a restaurant here in the U.S. Was that difficult?
DR. MAHN MYINT SAING, REFUGEE FROM BURMAN: It needs a little bit of adjustment, but, no, it's not difficult.
DOANE: In 1988, Dr. Mahn Myint Saing found his clinic in the cross-fire of a brutal government crackdown in Burma - persecuted, he says, because he's part of the wrong ethnic group.
SAING: They shoot at the building. Boom, boom, boom, boom, boom, boom. Glass shattered.
DOANE: Your clinic was destroyed.
SAING: Yes, completely destroyed.
DOANE: Sang took up arms against the government but was eventually forced to flee with his family.
SAING: No human rights.
DOANE: In Myanmar, at all.
SAING: At all. No human rights.
DOANE: In the conflict, thousands fled into neighboring Thailand. For 23 years, 150,000 have been trapped, unable to go home, yet not permitted to leave the camps by the Thai government. Their best hope is an offer from the U.S. government to emigrate. That's what happened to 16-year-old Eh-Nay-Thaw, who spent 10 years in the camps before being resettled in Kentucky. When your mother tells you about those times, what does she tell you?
EH-NAY-THAW, REFUGEE FROM BURMA: Her house was burned. The only thing you see was ash, and the place, they destroyed everything.
DOANE: Your village where you were living was all destroyed?
EH-NAY-THAW: Yeah, yeah, ash.
DOANE: Eh-Nay-Thaw is among several hundred refugees from Burma who've been embraced by Crescent Hill Baptist Church. Officially resettled as refugees, they come here with full legal status, welcome to work, welcome to go to school, welcome to stay.
EH-NAY-THAW: God has sent a miracle for us, and we have chance to come here, which is real good.
DOANE: Groups like Kentucky Refugee Ministries provide support with English classes, assistance with government paperwork and job placement. Having started as a dish washer, Dr. Saing is something of a legend among the refugees.
SAING: America is not perfect, but in my mindset, it is the best place, bar none, it is the best place to live in this world.
DOANE: While they've lost their homeland, in Kentucky, they've found a home. Seth Doane, CBS News, Louisville.
PELLEY: The U.S. welcomes more refugees than any country on Earth. That's the CBS Evening News for tonight. For all of us at CBS News all around the world, good night.
60 Minutes on Sunday did an absolutely touching segment about homeless people living in cars and trucks in Florida.
One such unfortunate soul was Arielle Metzger, a 15-year-old girl with more self-confidence and pride than those carping and whining about what they're supposedly entitled to in Occupy encampments around the country (video follows with transcript and commentary):
On Wednesday's CBS Evening News, correspondent Chip Reid filed a report which took a sympathetic look at a family of illegal immigrants in Alabama who fear enforcement of the state's new law against illegal immigration. Reid also highlighted aspects of the law that even supporters consider to be flaws that should be fixed.
The CBS correspondent began the report by focusing on the "agonizing" plight of a 15-year-old illegal immigrant who fears separation from his parents:
On last night's CBS Evening News, correspondent Nancy Cordes listed one and only one sticking point in the failure of the so-called "supercommittee" to reach a deal, and that was, she said, how "Republicans on the supercommittee were pushing to make the Bush-era tax cuts permanent for everyone."
And only one politician, Democratic Senator and supercommitee member John Kerry, was permitted to frame the story for CBS viewers. "This is not a tax cutting committee. This is a deficit reduction committee," Kerry asserted. "And we do not believe that the wealthiest people in America should get another tax cut."
As reports started coming out on Wednesday on the search for White House shooting suspect Oscar Ramiro Ortega-Hernandez, one common detail was mentioned, including in The New York Times: "Late on Friday, the police searched the Occupy DC protest camp...after reports that the suspect might have spent time there." NBC, ABC, and CBS left that fact out of their evening and morning coverage of his arrest.
All three network evening news programs made the Wednesday afternoon arrest of Ortega-Hernandez their lead story. NBC Nightly News anchor Brian Williams proclaimed: "Shots fired at the White House, prompting an urgent manhunt for the gunman, now under arrest amid questions about his motive." ABC World News anchor Diane Sawyer declared: "Caught. The man accused of tiring an AK-47 at the White House, apprehended." On CBS's Evening News, anchor Scott Pelley reported: "Bullets strike the White House. Bob Orr on the man in custody."
During Saturday's Republican presidential debate in South Carolina, CBS Evening News anchor Scott Pelley arrogantly argued with former House Speaker Newt Gingrich about the "rule of law" concerning killing American born terrorists overseas.
By the end of the exchange, Pelley, with a smug, condescending expression on his face, looked quite foolish as the audience applauded and one of Gingrich's opponents on stage actually commented, "Well said. Well said" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
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.
NBC and ABC in their evening and morning newscasts completely ignored the grilling Eric Holder received on Capitol Hill on Tuesday, over his role in the Fast and Furious scandal. Senate Republicans forced Holder to admit his initial statements to Congress about his department’s role in gunwalking were "inaccurate," and that he never apologized to the family of a Border Agent killed by a Mexican drug cartel that used guns from the Fast and Furious operation. Only Sharyl Attkisson, in two full reports aired on Tuesday’s Evening News and Wednesday’s The Early Show, relayed the testimony that ABC and NBC blacked out on their broadcasts.
Attkisson, who was berated by the Obama White House and even momentarily benched by CBS, for her role in covering the story, ran down the pertinent details in the following story aired on the November 8 edition of CBS Evening News with Scott Pelley:
ABC's World News this week failed to mention the development that former New Jersey Democratic Senator and former Governor Jon Corzine is mired in a scandal involving $600 million in missing funds from the financial firm MF Global which he headed until today.
The CBS Evening News and the NBC Nightly News so far have not mentioned Corzine's Democratic Party affiliation as they ran full reports on Tuesday, and on Friday both shows updated viewers after Corzine's resignation.
On Friday, Brian Williams related that a "prominent criminal defense lawyer" had been hired by Corzine as the NBC anchor read a brief item:
Thursday's World News on ABC skipped the congressional decision to subpoena White House emails related to the Solyndra solar energy company that went into bankruptcy after receiving tax dollars. The CBS Evening News gave the story 22 seconds, while the NBC Nightly News included a 31-second news brief.
The liberal media have spent the month of October enthusing over the left-wing “Occupy” protests, richly rewarding the anti-capitalist movement with the oxygen of national publicity. The broadcast networks, in particular, have boosted the protests as “growing” and “resonating,” and cast the participants as more than just a radical fringe group, but drawn “from all walks of life, young and old, male and female.”
The MRC has pulled together quotes showing these trends, as documented in the October 17 and October 31 editions of our Notable Quotables newsletter (available in full at www.MRC.org). The most obnoxious examples:
Earlier today, Matthew Balan at NewsBusters noted how the "Big Three Nets Trumpet Wall Street Protesters 'Proclaiming Victory.'" HIs report concentrated on the morning shows, but a Media Research Center Reality Check showed the that the fawning has also been present in evening news coverage.
Evening show network executives, however, may be less than thrilled about the "Occupy Wall Street" crowd coverage, and secretly hoping for the whole thing to wind down. That's because their shows, which have generally seen their ratings rise during the past twelve months, saw their combined audience fall below 21 million during the week of October 3, with CBS suffering a particularly sharp drop (comparisons are to previous week):
The broadcast networks continued their enthusiastic coverage Friday night on behalf of the far-left Wall Street protesters, with NBC’s Brian Williams, again, the most excited while CBS anchor Scott Pelley, who has until now refrained from the hype delivered by ABC and NBC, jumped in by promising “a series of reports on the growing protests around the country.”
Williams led by touting how the protesters “are claiming victory tonight” by not getting removed from the Manhattan park. He then hailed their impact which he has helped fuel: “This protest movement is showing strength. It’s still growing, changing and spreading...”
But instead of highlighting the cover-up in the scandal of the $535 million federal loan trumpeted by the Obama administration to the solar panel manufacturer which went bankrupt, neither ABC nor NBC mentioned the development Friday night and CBS allocated a mere 25 seconds.
Andrew Petersen. That’s the last Republican to win New York’s 9th Congressional District. CBS Evening News anchor Scott Pelley provided that bit of trivia, and displayed a picture of him, on Wednesday night as he relayed how Petersen was “swept into office in the 1920 Republican landslide...”
Throughout coverage of President Obama's address to Congress Thursday night, anchors and correspondents on both CBS and NBC gave fawning reviews of the new jobs plan, in some cases, even before the speech began. In contrast, ABC took a much more skeptical tone, with a focus on the President's falling poll numbers.
Evening News anchor Scott Pelley opened CBS's coverage by proclaiming the President was "hanging out a 'help wanted' sign" for unemployed Americans, with chief White House correspondent Norah O'Donnell excitedly announcing moments later that Obama would put forward "an extraordinarily bold plan" to create jobs.
Just as criticism builds over President Barack Obama’s plan to spend the next week-and-a-half on Martha’s Vineyard while the economy flounders, the CBS Evening News came to his defense, suggesting he’s been a workaholic compared to his Republican predecessors.
While “Obama has taken 61 days of vacation so far,” anchor Scott Pelley noted over a photo montage of those he cited, “at this point in their presidencies, George W. Bush had spent 180 days at his ranch, where staff often joined him for meetings, and Ronald Reagan 112 days at his ranch. Among recent Presidents, Bill Clinton took the least time off -- 28 days.”
“Republican presidential contender Rick Perry rustles up a controversy when he appears to threaten the head of the Federal Reserve,”CBS Evening News anchor Scott Pelley teased Tuesday night in taking literally Perry’s remarks about Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke. CBS then played a clip of Perry: “We would treat him pretty ugly down in Texas.”
Brian Williams teased the NBC Nightly News by promoting President Obama’s scolding, in a CNN interview, of Perry: “On the broadcast tonight, fighting words. Rick Perry comes out swinging and talking and the White House tells him to watch what he says.”
“Billionaires on notice,” ABC anchor Diane Sawyer teased Monday’s World News in trumpeting, as did CBS and NBC, aNew York Times op-ed by liberal billionaire Warren Buffett. Sawyer heralded Buffett’s quest: “Is it time for the mega-rich to pay at least the same tax rate as their secretaries? And if they did pay their fair share, would it fix America's schools or roads?”
Sawyer soon ludicrously asserted “working men and women,” meaning the non-wealthy, “pay the most taxes.” In fact, as detailed by the Tax Foundation, “America's wealthiest taxpayers are paying a disproportionate share of the income tax burden” while half of all households pay no income taxes.
Friday night’s CBS Evening News examined Rick Perry’s record in Texas, citing his claims his policies led to job creation but then pivoting to how “Perry's bedrock pledge to never raise taxes also had a reckoning this year.”
Reporter Wyatt Andrews relayed liberal claims that “with taxes not an option, the state cut deeply into health care and so deeply into education, some 49,000 teachers are being laid off.” He prompted a teacher: “Do you see a Texas miracle?” She retorted, “No, I see a Texas tragedy” as Andrews related that she “calls her layoff the cost of low taxes.”