Scott Whitlock is the associate editor for the Media Research Center's NewsBusters.org site.
Scott Whitlock is the associate editor for the Media Research Center's NewsBusters.org website. Previously, he was a contributing editor and the MRC's senior news analyst. Scott's work has been published in The Washington Times (here as well), National Review Online and other outlets. He has been cited in publications such as The Washington Post, Red State, to name a few. Scott's articles have also repeatedly been linked to on the Drudge Report.
Scott is a graduate of George Mason University and grew up in Northern Virginia. He can be contacted at SWhitlock@MRC.org. You can also follow Scott on Twitter.
Latest from Scott Whitlock
The journalists at ABC on Monday made little effort to hide their contempt for “surreal” “instigator” Ken Starr as he lead part of the defense for Donald Trump during the impeachment trial. Stephanopoulos, who it must be reminded is a former Bill Clinton White House operative, sputtered, “I have to say it was breathtaking, maybe even a little surreal to see Ken Starr take on the age of impeachment comparing impeachment to war, calling it hell, when he was the chief instigator of President Clinton's impeachment.”
New York Times writer Ginger Thompson on January 25, 1999 went so far as to compare the Clinton impeachment — in the first sentence of a front page story — to Nazi Germany: “As she watches Republicans in Congress push ahead with impeachment proceedings against President Clinton, Ellen Mendel of Manhattan says she feels the same despair that she did as a girl in Nazi Germany when the efforts of a stubborn group of leaders snowballed, crushing the will of the people.”
“News analysis” is a euphemism in the New York Times (and other papers) for “editorial we want on the front page.” On Thursday, the paper echoed the hacky excitement shown by CNN and others over the Democratic impeachment managers. Here’s the headline from Thursday’s “news analysis”:
The new talking point for liberals in the media is that Senate Republicans just aren’t paying attention to the brilliance of the House impeachment managers. CNN and MSNBC pushed that on Wednesday and on Thursday, CBS This Morning co-hosts worried about lazy, sleepy GOP senators not following the case for removal.
The gushing over Adam Schiff continued on Wednesday. While CNN hailed the “Dazzling” and “remarkable” opening statements by the Democrat, ABC’s Terry Moran enthused over the “senatorial eloquence” of the “meticulous” Schiff. Regarding Schiff’s two and a half hour address, Moran extolled: “Adam Schiff addressing the Senate sitting as a court of impeachment with a proper legal argument. It was meticulous and well organized."
MSNBC’s unhinged coverage of the start of the Senate’s impeachment trial went into the early hours of Wednesday morning. If you thought they were unreasonable before, just wait until the clock edges past midnight. The cable channel’s journalists and guests hailed the “great performance” of House Manager Adam Schiff and called for the disbarring of White House Counsel Pat Cipollone.
Surprise! MSNBC thinks the Democrats are doing great during day one of the impeachment hearings. During the 6:30 PM break after hours of testimony, host Lawrence O’Donnell praised, “What we've seen so far is evidence versus rhetoric. The House managers showed up with evidence they have incorporated evidence into every bit of their argument to obtain further evidence. It seems like the Trump defense team showed up thinking this was just a procedural day.”
ABC offered long hours of coverage of the first day of impeachment, dissecting every moment of the effort to remove the President. At 3:05 PM, Melissa Murray fretted that making the wrong decisions during this trial could lead to the end of “democracy.” The ABC News analyst decided that the main focus is this: “This is the big question. Is the president going to be above the law? That's the whole point of this impeachment hearing.” Murray, contributor Kate Shaw and George Stephanopoulos were discussing witnesses and the various procedural motions. Murray warned of the possibility of democracy ending:
MSNBC on Tuesday kicked off impeachment with a movie trailer-style hype video and a Chris Matthews rant about dumb voters. Matthews attempted to compliment the legal strategy of Alan Dershowitz, who is arguing that no crime should equal no conviction. The Hardball host bashed the dummies he fears will find the strategy effective. Matthews spewed, “To the non-attentive voter — I think Trump always loves the low information guy, the Dancing with the Stars who cares more about Harry and Meghan or about Brad and Jennifer."
In theory, journalists would bristle at taking orders from a political campaign on how to report on something. But MSNBC on Monday has repeatedly embraced the “warning” from the Biden camp to not fall for the “debunked” “disinformation” by Senate Republicans. After Heidi Przybyla sounded like a Biden press secretary earlier in the day, host Katy Tur trumpeted, “Joe Biden’s warning to the media ahead of the President’s impeachment trial.” She seemed to appreciate the order: “In its most forceful push back yet, Joe Biden’s campaign has issued a warning to the media about disinformation on Ukraine and attacks on Hunter Biden.”
The journalists at CBS This Morning on Monday alternated between praising former Senator Jeff Flake for his current stand against Donald Trump and complaining that the Republican didn’t take the stand sooner. Talking to the guest, co-host Tony Dokoupil played the role of good cop. He quoted, “Republican Jeff Flake of Arizona served in the Senate from 2013 until last year. In September, he wrote in The Washington Post, ‘My fellow Republicans, it is time to risk your careers in favor of your principles. Whether you believe the President deserves impeachment you know he does not deserve re-election.’”
This week, CNN absolutely freaked out over Republican Senator Martha McSally calling one of their journalists a “liberal hack.” Hosts on the network raged over it as “indecent,” “disgraceful” and “hatred.” However one year ago this week, when it was revealed that Democratic Congresswoman Ilhan Omar had tweeting that Israel was “evil,” the cable network only mildly chided her.
If there’s one thing CBS This Morning journalists have been worried about during the 2020 Democratic primaries, it’s whether the various candidates are liberal enough. That trend continued on Friday as co-host Tony Dokoupil pressed Amy Klobuchar on whether she’s “progressive” enough for today’s Democratic voters. He also demanded the senator endorse a wealth tax. After noting that socialist Bernie Sanders is far to the left, Dokoupil lectured, “I was looking at a report just this morning that said that the average family, the typical family is poorer today than they were back in 2000. Life expectancy in this country is falling.” He worried:
In a rare moment of candor, MSNBC’s Lawrence O’Donnell admitted what the network has become: An echo chamber that won’t accept debate. Appearing Sunday on The Al Franken Podcast, O’Donnell disputed the idea that CNN “hates Trump.” The host contrasted, “On MSNBC there will be no one defending [Trump] because we don’t bring on liars. I don’t bring on a liar. I won’t do that.”
CBS This Morning on Thursday devoted an entire segment to pushing the revival of the long-dead Equal Rights Amendment. Though reporter Jan Crawford did highlight a bit of opposition to the effort, she left out key details, such as the amendment’s connection to supporting abortion. Co-host Tony Dokoupil described it as a move “that's intended to outlaw discrimination against women.” Also not mentioned in the segment? The fact that four of the states which passed the ERA have since rescinded their votes.
One of the weirdest moments in CNN’s debate on Tuesday came when one of the debate moderators completely disregarded Bernie Sanders’s denial of making a sexist remark. It was such a botched moment that even the liberal Mika Brzezinski mocked CNN as “bizarre.” The moment occurred when moderator Abby Phillip assumed Sanders guilty of telling Elizabeth Warren a woman couldn’t be elected President.
Apparently, cynicism is warranted for congressional leaders. Well, some of the time anyway. Nancy Pelosi fan Andrea Mitchell on Tuesday scoffed and laughed at Kevin McCarthy as the House Minority Leader suggested that Pelosi’s delaying of impeachment articles is nothing more than a transparent attempt at helping Joe Biden.
Despite polling at an average of 1.2 percent in the polls, CBS This Morning on Tuesday treated Cory Booker’s departure from the 2020 Democratic field as a major event, devoting almost 8 minutes to the news. Perhaps this might have something to do with the fact that co-host Gayle King is a supporter to the Democrat’s previous campaigns. She even admitted this at the start of the show’s long interview, saying, “Full disclosure, we've been friends for a very long time. I can't pretend like I don't know you.”
MSNBC host Joe Scarborough on Monday continued down his path to media redemption. The former Republican has already left the GOP and denounced the party. Now, he thinks that maybe liberals were “right” all along in thinking that Republicans were always “racist” and “rotten.” Talking to another ex-GOP, Rick Wilson, the MSNBC host noted that the left would say the “party was always corrupt, it was always rotten. It was always racist. You are now reaping what you sow.”
Now that the Democrats have impeached Donald Trump, journalists seem to think the process is a form of defending democracy. But that wasn’t always so. It used to make you something akin to the KKK. Eleven years ago this week, on January 9, 1999, McLaughlin Group panelist Eleanor Clift began slimed, linking the impeachment managers to a domestic terror group like the Klan: “And second of all, that herd of managers from the House, I mean frankly all they were missing was white sheets. They’re like night riders going over.”