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By Jack Coleman | | March 4, 2013 | 7:40 PM EST

I always look forward to Mike Papantonio's appearances on radio, since he invariably says something that leaves me shaking my head in bemusement and pity.

Papantonio, an attorney and co-host of the "Ring of Fire" radio show, was guest hosting on Ed Schultz's radio program Friday and talking about the legal challenge to the Voting Rights Act of 1965 before the Supreme Court. (audio clips after page break)

By Matt Hadro | | March 4, 2013 | 6:45 PM EST

CNN's Dana Bash fact-checked President Obama's falsehood about the sequester on Friday, but the major networks didn't exactly follow CNN's lead in reporting the distortion that Capitol Hill janitors and police would receive a pay cut because of the sequester.

In his Friday press conference, Obama claimed, "They're going to have less pay, the [Capitol Hill] janitors, the security guards. They just got a pay cut." Shortly after that, CNN's Bash obtained from the Senate Sergeant-at-Arms that the workers would not receive a pay cut, just a limit on overtime pay. NBC ignored the distortion on its weekend newscasts, while CBS and ABC reported it one time each.

By Tim Graham | | March 4, 2013 | 6:34 PM EST

There's an update in our report on the spokesman for the Wisconsin Democratic Party sending three tweets comparing Gov. Scott Walker to cannibalistic serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer.

The spokesman, Graeme Zielinski, has been dumped as the party spokesman and Democrat leaders also docked Zielinski a week's pay -- "a little more than $1,000." The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel added that Zielinski would stay on the payroll, but not on Twitter:

By Ken Shepherd | | March 4, 2013 | 6:24 PM EST

While we've shown how the media have studiously sought to blame congressional Republicans for the sequester and inoculate President Obama against any blame, it appears to not be working. We'll keep an eye out to see to what extent, if at all, the broadcast networks report on the dip in the president's job approval numbers.

As Politico's "44" blog noted this afternoon, the president has taken a hit this weekend in his job approval rating. Reported Donovan Slack (emphasis mine):

By Noel Sheppard | | March 4, 2013 | 5:35 PM EST

As NewsBusters reported, NBA Hall of Famer Dennis Rodman had a truly disastrous appearance on ABC's This Week Sunday.

According to TVNewser, this apparently has led the good friend of North Korean despot Kim Jong Un to cancel subsequent television interviews:

By Paul Bremmer | | March 4, 2013 | 5:28 PM EST

In the aftermath of the resignation of Pope Benedict XVI, CBS has made up its mind about Catholicism: the Church is in crisis and must be reformed! Whereas Martin Luther tacked his theses on the Wittenberg church door, however, CBS opted to ensure its stab at church reformation would go largely unnoticed by including the segment on Saturday's CBS This Morning. [Video below. MP3 audio here.]

To discuss this topic, CBS anchor Anthony Mason brought in three liberals: Jim Frederick of Time Magazine, the Rev. Paul Raushenbush of the Huffington Post -- the great-grandson of Baptist minister and Social Gospel champion Walter Rauschenbusch -- and Sister Maureen Fiedler, who hosts her own public radio show. All three agreed with the premise that the Catholic Church needs to change. If the message wasn’t clear enough, a screen behind the guests read “Catholic Church in Crisis” (with no question mark) and the chyron read “Catholic Church in Crisis: Is the Vatican Capable of Reform?”

By Kyle Drennen | | March 4, 2013 | 5:26 PM EST

Appearing on left-wing actor Alec Baldwin's weekly WNYC talk radio show, Here's The Thing, NBC Nightly News anchor Brian Williams laughably asserted that his reporting was void of any political bias: "My work has been so cleansed, as I see it, and as I've tried, of political opinions over 27 years....I can try to call it down the middle, and try to be fair about it, and do a 'just the facts'..." [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]

Throughout the interview, Baldwin gushed over how supposedly objective Williams was: "Although loud personalities with extreme views gobble up more air time, television news is an industry that still rewards unbiased, thoughtful, and direct reporting....many people in your business, you can feel little belches and little fissures of their opinions coming through, or a sense of that, and with you, there's none....I think that's what makes your program so successful. That's why I watch you."

By Matthew Balan | | March 4, 2013 | 3:41 PM EST

On Monday, CBS This Morning launched a week-long set of interviews for Women's History Month, but the majority of the women they picked for their list of "Eye Opening Women" are dedicated liberals, particularly on social issues. The morning newscast first conducted a fawning interview of former Justice Sandra Day O'Connor, who was part of the Supreme Court plurality that upheld the Roe v. Wade decision in 1992's Planned Parenthood v. Casey.

Five out of the eight remaining women featured for the series of interviews are all notables on the left side of the political spectrum. On Tuesday, anchors Charlie Rose and Norah O'Donnell will interview The Daily Beast's Tina Brown and Arianna Huffington, founder of far-left website The Huffington Post. Brown has a history of attacking conservatives. During a 2011 appearance on MSNBC's Morning Joe program, she likened tax hike opponents to terrorists:

By Clay Waters | | March 4, 2013 | 3:19 PM EST

The perils and victims of the round of the mandatory federal spending cuts known as sequestration led the New York Times' weekend coverage, with the 2.4% cut in annual federal spending that went into effect starting Friday labeled "austerity" and ushered in with headlines warning that "Poor May Be Hit Particularly Hard." Also: those who still approve of Congress tend to be "Obama haters," according to a news story.

Predictably, it was pro-Obama White House reporter Jackie Calmes' lead story in the Sunday edition that forecast the "new round of austerity" and predicted less economic growth as a result: "Cuts To Achieve Goal For Deficit, But Toll Is High – $4 Trillion In 10 Years – No 'Grand Bargain,' and a Drag on Jobs and Economic Growth."

By Howard Portnoy | | March 4, 2013 | 2:45 PM EST

An article in Monday’s U.S. News & World Report by Ken Walsh, a veteran journalist who covered five presidencies, notes a growing “unhealthy antagonism … between the West Wing and the mainstream media.” If the assessment is accurate, it could mean that the press, after four years of mindless obeisance to this administration, is finally ready to provide frank coverage, warts and all.

The sea change, if one is in the cards, started with the now-infamous brouhaha involving another old hand, Bob Woodward, and White House economic adviser Gene Sperling. Since Woodward publicly asserted that he was threatened by the administration, a number of White House correspondents have come forward to affirm that the press has long been expected to show deference and go with the administration-provided narrative or keep quiet.

By Ken Shepherd | | March 4, 2013 | 1:43 PM EST

"The Obama administration couldn’t have made its cheerleaders at ABC, CBS, and NBC look any more foolish," NewsBusters publisher Brent Bozell noted earlier today in reaction to a new study by the Media Research Center's (MRC) Geoff Dickens showing that 66 percent of the broadcast network news coverage of the budget sequestration that took effect on Friday advanced Obama White House talking points but failed to include any rebuttals from skeptics.

"Thanks to the bogus sequestration panic pushed by the administration and the liberal media, the American people recognize that the networks are nothing more than an adjunct of the Obama White House press office," the MRC founder added in a March 4 statement. “Like squawking parrots, ABC, CBS, and NBC mindlessly repeated the administration’s phony, over-hyped doomsday talking points during the two weeks leading up to sequestration. That a full two thirds of their stories didn’t include a shred of skepticism is an abomination."  Below are just some of the most outlandish claims made on the networks:

By Jeffrey Meyer | | March 4, 2013 | 1:02 PM EST

**UPDATE** Earlier version of blog incorrectly stated that Ron Fournier had deleted tweets in question when in fact they are still on his account.

It appears as though the days of civility and integrity in journalism are long gone.  On March 1, National Journal’s Ron Fournier, formerly the Washington bureau chief at the Associated Press, took to Twitter to express his dissatisfaction with government sequestration, suggesting that President Obama:

Can handle Bin laden, not Boehner?  He may be POTUS, but Obama incapable of “a Jedi mind meld.”

Fournier continued his violent rhetoric in a follow-up tweet, suggesting that, “Bin Laden didn’t compromise.  Handled him pretty well.”   

By Noel Sheppard | | March 4, 2013 | 12:59 PM EST

Michelle Obama participated in a Google+ Hangout Monday involving her “Let’s Move!” campaign.

In response to a question about what parents should do in unsafe areas, she advised that kids should exercise indoors:

By Ken Shepherd | | March 4, 2013 | 12:41 PM EST

What's the point of the Washington Post retaining a conservative blogger when the paper's editors will opt to highlight her posts critiquing other conservatives rather than printing ones critical of the president and his lapdog lackeys in the press? Once again the Washington Post's op-ed page editors chose to excerpt a Jennifer Rubin blog post critical of conservatives rather than one tough on Barack Obama and the liberal media.

In her 8-paragraph March 4 item headlined "Talking truth to CPAC" -- condensed from a 14-paragraph blog post by the same title published online on March 3--  Rubin criticized the conservative gathering as "creatures of the 1980s, when our problems, our country and the world were different." "Younger conservatives have to take the movement into their own hands, refurbish it, revitalize it, cast off what is not relevant and persuade others to join the movement," if American political conservatism is to survive, Rubin concluded. Yet an hour earlier on Sunday, Rubin had published to the Post website a 15-paragraph item headlined, "Will anyone police this White House?" wherein the conservative blogger argued that (emphasis mine):

By Matt Hadro | | March 4, 2013 | 12:36 PM EST

CNN's Howard Kurtz mocked the media – including his own network – on Sunday's Reliable Sources for uncritically channeling government hysteria over the sequester cuts.

"[I]f the press had put in, let's say, 10 percent of the effort that was devoted to investigating, I don't know, Beyonce's lip syncing into the actual measurable effects of these budget cuts, I think we would have seen a somewhat different picture," quipped Kurtz. [Video below. Audio here.]