On Tuesday’s CBS This Morning, co-host Charlie Rose led off the broadcast by triumphantly announcing: “Protesters demand Michigan's governor resign over a toxic war crisis. He admits it is his Hurricane Katrina."
Kyle Drennen is the Media Research Center's Senior News Analyst and a Contributing Editor to NewsBusters. He is the co-author of the 2014 Media Reality Check study, TV News Blacks Out This Year’s Bad Election News for Democrats. His media analysis has been routinely cited by nationally syndicated radio hosts Rush Limbaugh and Mark Levin, as well as on Fox News and The Wall Street Journal’s WSJ.com website. He joined the MRC in 2007 after graduating from Providence College with a Bachelor of Arts degree in history and political science.
Appearing on Tuesday’s NBC Today to promote her new documentary series on Netflix, left-wing comedian and talk show host Chelsea Handler highlighted the topic of one episode: “...you think you know about racism and then you delve into it and you kind of realize how little you do know and then how embarrassed you are about how little you know. And how embarrassing people in this country are when you talk to them.”
On Monday, CBS This Morning devoted a nearly three-minute-long report to Democratic presidential candidates and left-wing activists denouncing Michigan’s Republican Governor Rick Snyder over the Flint water crisis. Correspondent Adrianna Diaz began the one-sided segment by declaring: “Frustration over Flint's tainted water supply is spilling over.” A soundbite followed of Jesse Jackson telling a group of protesters: “Flint is now a crime scene.”
On Monday’s NBC Today, chief foreign correspondent Richard Engel reported live from Tehran on the lifting of sanctions on Iran and sounded like an anchor on Iranian state television as he touted the authoritarian regime celebrating the development: “Well, this is an extraordinary time to be here in Tehran. The mood is one of expectation and optimism. People are encouraged by the deal. They think they got the better half of the deal, and they are looking forward to a better economy.”
Appearing on Friday’s NBC Today, Meet the Press moderator Chuck Todd hyped the birther attacks on Ted Cruz as damaging to the Texas Senator’s campaign: “...it has unnerved Cruz. You saw him. What got him to attack Trump? He avoided it for six months....This has rattled him. We're now on day seven where every day he has had to answer questions about this.”
Hours before the first Republican debate of 2016 on Thursday, NBC’s Today and ABC’s Good Morning America both eagerly hyped a report in The New York Times that Ted Cruz failed to disclose a loan from Goldman Sachs to help fund his 2012 Senate campaign.
In an interview conducted with House Speaker Paul Ryan on Tuesday and aired on Wednesday’s NBC Today, co-host Matt Lauer derided Republican attempts to repeal ObamaCare: “The House and the Senate last week passed a bill that would have repealed the Affordable Care Act. I think it's the 62nd time that's happened, and obviously the President vetoed it. Did you put out what you consider to be any kind of alternative?”
On Wednesday, all three network morning shows offered rave reviews of President Obama’s final State of the Union address, applauding the “passionate defense of his record” and his repeated attacks on Republicans. Leading off NBC’s Today, co-host Matt Lauer announced: “Return to hope and change....President Obama uses his last State of the Union address to tout his accomplishments, set some lofty goals, and take a veiled shot at Donald Trump.”
Despite most of South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley’s response to the State of the Union being a takedown of President Obama, during interviews with the Republican on Wednesday, NBC’s Today and CBS This Morning focused exclusively on her warning against the “angriest voices” in the GOP.
During Tuesday’s fawning Today show special at the White House, President Obama’s chief digital officer Jason Goldman appeared on the broadcast and congratulated the hosts for serving as a propaganda tool for the administration: “I think you guys do this really well with the Today show. You know, the stuff you've been doing this morning, showing stuff behind the scenes is really great...and I think it’s the kind of thing that people look for.”
During a lengthy interview with President Obama conducted on Monday and aired on Tuesday’s NBC Today, co-host Matt Lauer worried about Republican presidential candidates playing on the “fear” of the American people: “That fear, though, is still incredibly real....And in some ways, it's driving the current presidential campaign. You've got a guy like Donald Trump and others who have recognized and identified that fear....And in some ways, they’re running on it.”
On Tuesday’s NBC Today – aired live from the White House to promote President Obama’s final State of the Union – the morning shows hosts could not contain their glee at being there. At the top of the show, co-host Savannah Guthrie proclaimed: “And a morning show first....an unprecedented morning live at the White House....a moment of history for us, for this show, and where so much history has been made.”
On her MSNBC show on Monday, host Andrea Mitchell derided the film 13 Hours, opening in theaters nationwide on Friday: “That new film about Benghazi coming out this week could give wider circulation to conspiracy theories, despite denials, that CIA operatives were told to stand down and not rescue four Americans, including an ambassador, who died in that assault.”
Just weeks before the Iowa Caucus, talk show host Ellen DeGeneres again gave Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton a softball platform to promote her candidacy. At one point, DeGeneres reiterated her endorsement of Clinton: “And you know what a supporter I am. I think that you’re as smart as can be, I think you are qualified, I think you stand for everything that I want in a president.”
Wrapping up an interview with left-wing music mogul Russell Simmons on Monday’s CBS This Morning, co-host Charlie Rose wondered: “Are you ready for President Trump?” Simmons sarcastically replied: “No. I think I'm ready for him to win the Republican primary. That’d be good.”
The latest gushing edition of Politico Magazine released on Wednesday entitled “The Obama Issue: A Special Report on a Historic Presidency,” was loaded with one article after another largely celebrating the impact of President Obama’s waning administration.
In an interview with House Speaker Paul Ryan on Thursday, Yahoo! News anchor Katie Couric grilled the Republican leader on gun control: “Let’s talk about President Obama’s executive action on guns. What did you think when the President cried?...Were you affected by it?” Couric demanded Ryan put “aside” the Constitution: “And I know you vehemently oppose the President’s use of executive actions, but Constitutional issues aside, Mr. Speaker, do you still believe closing the gun show loophole is reasonable?”
On Friday, all three network morning shows promoted CNN’s Thursday night gun control town hall event with President Obama and highlighted the commander-in-chief smearing gun rights supporters as conspiracy theorists. In a news brief on ABC’s Good Morning America, anchor Amy Robach declared: “President Obama is defending his executive actions on gun control. During a town hall meeting in Virginia, he denied any suggestion of a conspiracy against gun owners' rights and he said he's willing to meet with the NRA.”
On Thursday, NBC’s Today and CBS This Morning joined ABC’s Good Morning America in promoting Donald Trump questioning Ted Cruz being a natural born U.S. citizen. On Today, co-host Savannah Guthrie proclaimed: “Donald Trump is escalating his attacks on Republican rival Ted Cruz, reiterating questions about the Texas senator's eligibility to run for president. And now another prominent Republican is suggesting the issue is worth looking into.”
At the top of Wednesday’s NBC Today, co-host Matt Lauer teased an “exciting” announcement about the morning show preparing to broadcast from a new location far from its New York studio. Fellow co-host Savannah Guthrie added: “Yeah, the whole show is headed somewhere. We’ll have more on that in a minute.”