It's irresistible to play the game of imagining the MSM response had a prominent Republican been caught saying of Barack Obama that "a few years ago this guy would have been carrying our bags." In the case of a Mitt Romney or Paul Ryan, calls for them to quit the campaign would be echoing from the halls of MSNBC to the shores of the New York Times.
But let a Democrat say it, in the person of The World's Greatest and Most Beloved Politician, AKA Bill Clinton, and well, no problem. The MSM reacts with a yawn. Take Ryan Lizza, the New Yorker correspondent who actually broke the story. Appearing on CNN this morning, Lizza assured host Soledad O'Brien that "I don't think it's racial. I don't think Bill Clinton has a racist bone in his body." View the video after the jump.
On his CNN program on Monday, John King pressed both Obama senior advisor David Axelrod and Democratic Rep. Joe Sestak on the latter's allegation that he was offered a job by the White House in exchange for getting out of the Pennsylvania Senate primary against Arlen Specter. Even though King pushed for an answer, Axelrod denied any wrongdoing on the White House's part and Sestak refused to explain further [audio available here; video below the jump].
The CNN anchor raised the controversy with Sestak 16 minutes into the 7 pm Eastern hour. Though King was late in pressing Sestak on the issue, given the politician made the allegation against the Obama White House in February, he tried hard to get the Pennsylvania Democrat to divulge further information. The congressman went beyond filibustering, rephrasing his vague answer and even trying to change the subject:
On CNN's American Morning today, White House correspondent Suzanne Malveaux reported on Barack Obama's campaigning in Virginia. Afterwards, anchor Kiran Chetry had a question:
CHETRY: All right. And Suzanne, what's on tap for the campaign today? And please tell me it's not lipstick again.
MALVEAUX: Let's hope not. He's going to be in Norfolk, Virginia. That is in southeast Virginia, and it's home to the world's largest Naval base. It's one of the most competitive areas that the Democrats and Republicans are fighting over. It's a critical piece of property, piece of land there with folks in Virginia, and they want those voters.
Appearing on Friday's "American Morning," Washington Post faith columnist Sally Quinn again attacked the choice of Alaska Governor Sarah Palin as Senator John McCain's vice presidential pick. During her interview with co-host Kiran Chetry, Quinn suggested Palin would not be able to balance her five children along with the duties of the vice presidency and potentially the presidency.
Chetry first asked Quinn if the questions she has raised about Palin, including her ability to be both a mother and a leader, would be questions that she would ask of a man. After firmly answering "yes," Quinn claimed that the "burden of raising children falls on the mother" and said that her questions about Palin are not sexist, they are about whether or not Palin can "do the job."
After bringing up the "country first" theme of the Republican National Convention, Quinn took a jab at McCain's age as well as Palin's ability to put country first as commander in chief: "And I think if you're talking about the commander in chief, and that is what she is likely to be given his age and his health, will she put her country first, or will she put her family first?"
Thursday's edition of CNN's "American Morning" featured a "fact checking" segment on the claims former President Bill Clinton made about his accomplishments as president during his speech to the Democratic National Convention. The segment wasn't much of a "fact check" as CNN Business Correspondent Christine Romans mostly reminisced about the "glory days" of the '90's. But what she did find was that the worst part of Clinton's presidency was one of his more conservative actions: "He also signed into law a historic deregulation of the financial system, dismantling laws from the Great Depression that many say would have protected us against the current mortgage crisis."
Other problems the correspondent found with Clinton's presidency include: "the go-go days of the '90s also gave us the dotcom boom. And when that went bust, Allan Greenspan and the Federal Reserve lowered the interest rates to ease the pain. Dropping them so low, many now see the roots of the current housing mess way back in the dotcom boom. Plus, the '90s gave us this obsession with record home ownership with Clinton as a principal cheerleader."
On CNN's Live at Daybreak this morning, anchor Carol Costello described a TV ad in New Jersey's governor race: "The ad highlights comments from Democratic Senator Jon Corzine's ex-wife. She says, 'When I saw the campaign ad where Andrea Forrester said, 'Doug never let his family down, and he won't let New Jersey down,' all I could think was, Jon let his family down, and he'll probably let down New Jersey, too.'"
This led to the following exchange with CNN meterologist Jaqui Jeras.
Supreme Court nominee Samuel Alito is conservative and all the television coverage Monday morning made that clear, but several reporters went further by either repeatedly applying the tag or by adding adjectives to suggest he's out of the mainstream.