On Friday's World News on ABC, correspondent Jonathan Karl informed viewers of Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid's unsubstantiated charge that Mitt Romney has not paid taxes in 10 years, with the ABC correspondent dismissing the accusation as "outrageous and apparently unfounded."
Brad Wilmouth is a former Media Research Center news analyst and an alumnus of the University of Virginia.
On Saturday's Good Morning America on ABC, co-host Bianna Golodryga seemed to admire Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid for making an unsubstantiated charge that Mitt Romney had not paid taxes in 10 years, as she ended a short discussion of the smear by gushing: "Harry Reid, always one to speak his mind," inspiring a chuckle from correspondent David Kerley.
On Friday's Inside Washington on PBS, regular panel member Evan Thomas dismissed media claims that Mitt Romney's recent trip abroad suffered from gaffes as the Politico correspondent asserted that the GOP presidential candidate spoke the truth about the Olympics in London and the social problems of the Palestinians.
On Tuesday's NBC Nightly News, anchor Brian Williams read a short item noting the decision of Ohio Republican Congressman Steve LaTourette to retire from the House of Representatives this year, noting that he is "one of the last GOP moderates in Congress."
The NBC anchor also relayed LaTourette's complaint that "compromise has now become a dirty word."
Sunday's CBS Evening News and the NBC Nightly News tried to spin negatively a vague statement by Mitt Romney advisor Dan Senor that the GOP presidential candidate would "respect" the Israeli government's decision if it chose to attack militarily Iran's nuclear capability, suggesting that the Romney campaign's words amounted to a criticism of the Obama administration, and thus a breach of protocol that American politicians in a foreign land should not criticize the U.S. government.
But the effort to paint the statement into a gaffe contrasts with the media silence in July 2008 when then-Senator Barack Obama, during a trip to Israel as he campaigned for the White House, claimed to be a member of a Senate committee on which he did not serve, in an effort to portray himself as tough on Iran, as he tried to take credit for the actions of the Senate Banking Committee.
As he hosted a debate on Piers Morgan Tonight on Monday, CNN's Piers Morgan repeatedly cut off conservative guest John Lott as the former University of Chicago professor tried to argue against imposing additional gun control.
At one point, as he grew impatient with Lott trying to explain that the overwhelming majority of guns - 86 percent - are "semi-automatic," and that an "assault weapon" is not as unusual a weapon as it might sound, Morgan lost control and started ranting:
Appearing as a guest on Monday's Piers Morgan Tonight, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg recommended that America's police officers should go on strike and refuse to protect people until gun control legislation which would allegedly make them safer is enacted. Bloomberg:
Appearing on the Saturday, July 21, Melissa Harris-Perry show on MSNBC, NBC correspondent Michael Isikoff - formerly of Newsweek - made a point of noting that one of the guns used in the Aurora theater massacre used to be illegal under the assault weapons ban, as if shooter James Holmes could not simply have purchased a different gun to assist in his murder spree.
Isikoff asserted that the assault weapons ban, which expired in 2004, "was lifted under President Bush," and noted that President Obama had "pledged during his campaign to restore it" but that "he has dropped that issue." Isikoff:
Appearing as a panel member on the Saturday, July 21, Melissa Harris-Perry show on MSNBC, liberal CBS contributor Nancy Giles complained about Republican efforts to discourage abortion, and insisted that there is a "war on women," as she seemed incredulous that Republicans do not view themselves as conducting such a war. Giles melodramatically exclaimed that, "It's you!" referring to Republicans, waging a "war on women." Giles began her rant:
Appearing as a panel member on the Sunday, July 22, Melissa Harris-Perry show, MSNBC political analyst Jonathan Alter - formerly of Newsweek - charged that the NRA has "imposed" a "gag order" that makes politicians afraid to discuss enacting more gun control.
He went on to advise that those who support more gun laws should say to the NRA that "We're not going to let you silence us."
On the July 22 CBS Sunday Morning show, correspondent Lee Cowan highlighted criticism of gun rights by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, using a soundbite of the liberal mayor scurrilously remarking that gun rights advocates "think that the right to bear arms allows you to go out and kill people at random," before adding, "And that's not overstating it very much."
The report, which focused primarily on details of the Aurora theater massacre and its victims, digressed for a moment into the gun control issue, but only included the side that supports more gun control:
On Saturday's Today show, as NBC correspondent Michael Isikoff - formelry of Newsweek - filed a report on the drive to make people safer at movie theaters after the Aurora massacre, heconcluded his report by suggesting that, because "the powerful National Rifle Association has blocked any move for stricter gun laws," people will have to settle for "beefed-up security and greater vigilance," as if the NRA were preventing people from being safer.
Toward the end of the report, Isikoff relayed the complaint of gun control activists that it is too easy to obtain certain types of guns. Isikoff:
CNN anchor Piers Morgan devoted a considerable portion of his Friday program to pushing for more gun control, breaking with those who have advised delaying such talk until after a period of mourning for shooting victims in Aurora, Colorado.
Morgan not only began Piers Morgan Tonight with a "Piers' Special Commentary" calling for more gun laws, but, later in the program, he included three guests who argued in favor of more gun control, with only one to argue against, with whom the CNN host ended up becoming agitated as Denver University Professor David Kopel scolded Morgan for not waiting longer before launching into a divisive political debate.
Shortly after beginning the show, Morgan played a clip of New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg advising the presidential candidates to talk about the gun control issue, and then began his commentary:
On Friday's Inside Washington on PBS, regular panel member Nina Totenberg - a correspondent for NPR - generalized that "bankers and business" are not only the "super-rich" but also the "super-crooked" as the panel discussed the issue of Mitt Romney's taxes and President Barack Obama's "you didn't build that" gaffe in which he dismissed the importance of individual effort in entrepreneurship while crediting government. Totenberg:
On Friday's Inside Washington on PBS, regular panel member and conservative columnist Charles Krauthammer chided host Gordon Peterson for leading the show with the story of Mitt Romney's tax returns as Krauthammer argued that the "gaffe of the year" was committed by President Barack Obama the same week.
After Peterson set up the discussion of Romney's tax returns, he turned to Krauthammer, who began:
In a pre-recorded interview which ran on Wednesday's Piers Morgan Tonight, CNN's Piers Morgan pressed Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia from the left on abortion rights and Scalia's views on Roe versus Wade.
After earlier articulating the argument that a Supreme Court should perhaps be flexible as times change, Morgan again brought up the issue of "changing times" and seemed to lump abortion in with other rights that women acquired in the 20th century, as he asserted, "Everybody believed that was the right thing to do."
Appearing as a panel member on Sunday's Melissa Harris-Perry show, syndicated columnist and former CNN correspondent Bob Franken obnoxiously accused Mitt Romney of trying to portray the NAACP audience he spoke to as "Willie Hortons" whom he could use to motivate his Republican base. He went on to claim that Rush Limbaugh, whom he called the "grand dragon of radio," represents people who wish to return to Jim Crow segregation in America.
After fellow panel member and MSNBC contributor Joy Reid charged that Romney attended the NAACP convention to impress moderate white voters and also to motivate his conservative base, Franken began:
On Sunday's Melissa Harris-Perry show, MSNBC host Harris-Perry went on a rant about Mitt Romney's speech to the NAACP as she accused the GOP presidential candidate of only attending the convention for the purpose using negative audience reaction as "red meat to feed to his base," making African-Americans into "props." She began:
Appearing as a panel member on Sunday's Face the Nation on CBS, Time magazine's Rana Foroohar - identified as assistant managing editor in charge of economics and business on Time's Web site - lamented that she was "sad" at how much taxes are being discussed as she asserted that "one thing that's not going to get us some kind of a growth boom is a tax cut," and then called for more government spending which she claimed would entice businesses into more economic activity.
Without clarifying that the recent political debate about taxes has been about preventing tax rates from increasing as the Bush tax cuts expire, Foroohar dismissed the effectiveness of tax cuts and explained her prescription for the economy:
On Sunday's NBC Nightly News, CNBC chief Washington correspondent John Harwood warned that, unless the Romney campaign succeeds in changing the campaign subject away from Bain Capital, he could be "left out in the political wilderness pretty quickly" if both the Obama campaign and the media press Romney on the subject persistently.
After host Lester Holt asked "why is the question of when" Romney "was actually running things" at Bain Capital "so key," Harwood responded: