Tuesday’s Hardball on MSNBC featured textbook Chris Matthews with liberal spin (fretting over Donald Trump bringing up Clinton scandals in the debates), a decent segment (a touching tribute to the late John McLaughlin), and creepiness (uttering “what’s new, pussycat” to a female guest), but it also included a struggle with the facts as Matthews claimed that 2016 marks a chance for Democrats to control Congress and the White House for the first time since the Johnson administration.
The last two midterm elections have yielded big Republican congressional gains, yet most conservatives who cheered those developments now jeer at Donald Trump. That’s inconsistent thinking on their part, suggests Talking Points Memo editor and publisher Marshall.
“Trump is very little different from the average candidate Republicans elected in 2010 and 2014, in terms of radical views and extreme rhetoric,” wrote Marshall in a Saturday post. “All Trump's done is take the actual GOP issue package, turn it up to eleven and put it on a high speed collision course with RNC headquarters smack in the middle of presidential election year.” (Props to Marshall for that This Is Spinal Tap-Mad Max mixed metaphor.)
Instead of going on a tirade against Donald Trump or the horrors of ISIS, TBS’s Full Frontal host Samantha Bee chose to resume her vile attacks on conservatives with her latest show on Monday night featuring video of an elephant pooping to describe Republicans elected in the 2010 midterms. Specifically, Bee dubbed Republican Congressman Trey Gowdy (S.C.) as the “Benghazi queen” and the House Freedom Caucus as “wild-eyed tea party kamikazes” whose “mission” has been “to block the cock of democracy.”
Five years ago this month, a great many Tea Party Republicans took office in Congress. For some on the left, however, that may not have been the worst political development of January, 2011. This coming Thursday, notes The Washington Monthly's D.R. Tucker, “marks the fifth anniversary of the bitter night…when progressive Americans, and indeed Americans of all political persuasions who value honor, truth, respect, intelligence and decency, were shocked to learn that MSNBC had decided to end Countdown with Keith Olbermann.”
“What Keith Olbermann did for this country was profound,” declared Tucker in a post last Sunday. “He told the truth…He did more than just live up to the highest standards of American journalism. He did more than just stand up when so many around him stood down. Keith Olbermann kept our democracy safe.”
Discussing a focus group of Trump supporters convened by Frank Luntz that aired on Sunday’s Face the Nation, CBS News political analyst Jamelle Bouie promptly trashed them as representing the belief among social scientists (i.e. fellow liberals) that there’s been “a distinct rise in racial resentment and anti-black attitudes” in America resulting as a fact of the Obama presidency.
As CNN's John King made appearances on the news network on Thursday to discuss the race to replace House Speaker John Boehner, the CNN correspondent suggested that conservative Tea Party members lack understanding of Civics 101 in trying to press their agenda in the House. In a later appearance, after the announcement that Rep. Kevin McCarthy was dropping out of the race, King used the words "hostage crisis" to describe the situation.
So Harry Reid knew he was lying about Mitt Romney not paying taxes for ten years when he made the claim in 2012 from the lawsuit-free zone known as the floor of the U.S. Senate, but didn't care.
That's what one must conclude from Reid's response to CNN's Dana Bash about that statement. Asked on the network's New Day program if he regrets what he said, Reid responded: "Romney didn't win, did he?" Rather than question Reid's outrageously cynical "end justifies the means" mentality, Bash's edited interview moved on to another topic.
Mark Sumner contends that since the Reagan years, “conservatism has been more than just an argument about tax rates and regulat[ions]. It's become an open and honest war on the whole idea of governing.”
Saturday morning, Erica Werner at the Associated Press, aka the Administratino's Press, channeled her inner Nancy Cordes to play "gotcha" with Republicans who won election to the House on Tuesday.
Werner's report essentially regurgitated Cordes's petulance in the CBS reporter's question directed at House Speaker John Boehner on Thursday. Cordes identified supposedly stupid or ill-advised things some of the incoming freshmen have said in the past, while of course not identifying a single similar thing a sitting Democratic Party congressman has said on the floor of the House or in House committee hearings during their tenures. Excerpts follow the jump (bolds and numbered tags are mine):
In quite remarkable testimony on the day before the 13th anniversary of the 9/11 Islamist terrorist attacks on New York and Washington, the Washington Free Beacon's Adam Kredo reported today that "Francis Taylor, under secretary for intelligence and analysis at DHS, told senators during a hearing that ISIL supporters are known to be plotting ways to infiltrate the United States through the (nation's southern) border."
Predictably, Taylor's statements are getting very little other press attention.
On Friday, NPR political director Ron Elving asked in an online article “Is The Tea Party Finished?” Then he answered: “Yes, if you insist on calling it the Tea Party. Because that phrase implies the phenomenon is some sort of organized unit in the usual sense. And the Tea Party never really was one.” You might be able to read some delight between the lines, since the Tea Party wanted to defund public broadcasting.
Elving wrote like he was assembling an obituary: “the energy never really assumed the form of a conventional political party, and it did not build the machinery that could produce reliable candidates and campaigns.”
In the past two election cycles, the media have contorted themselves in spine-splitting fashion to feign collective outrage whenever a Republican candidate for anything anywhere - no matter how little-known or inconsequential - made an untoward off-the-cuff remark.
In 2012, this aided the White House in being able to fabricate a nonexistent "Republican War on Women."
With this in mind, will this same easily offended media report comments made by Kentucky's Democratic Speaker of the House Greg Stumbo who at a campaign event Thursday for senatorial candidate Alison Lundergan Grimes compared defeating Sen. Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) in 2014 to the allies liberating Europe from the Nazis at the end of World War II (video follows with transcript and commentary):