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
What would MSNBC late night be without a Nazi reference? Earlier in the evening, Brian Williams assailed the State of the Union address as “dark” and “bizarre. In the early hours of Wednesday morning, Jonathan Alter saw shades of Joseph Goebbels and “the big lie.”
Of course, hard-left CNN journalist Jim Acosta couldn’t let a touching moment in Tuesday’s State of the Union go without injecting liberal spin onto it. Regarding the President’s awarding of the Medal of Freedom to Rush Limbaugh, Acosta smeared the radio star as a racist, claiming a “history of making derogatory comments about African-Americans.” I
Just seconds after Donald Trump ended his third State of the Union address on Tuesday, — a speech that saw tributes to the heroics of our military and awarding Rush Limbaugh the Presidential Medal of Freedom — MSNBC’s Brian Williams, immediately bashed it as “dark,” “bizarre” and “unusual.” Williams immediately launched into attack mode, decrying: “Hard to put how unusual this was from the Speaker of the House ending by pointedly ripping up the text of the speech, to the President here engaging for the second time the chief justice who is sitting as judge at his impeachment trial, which continues tomorrow.”
What was Chris Matthews thinking about in the moments before the State of the Union? Politics? Policy? Nope. He was explaining to the MSNBC audience how Donald Trump is like Satan and Americans are making a “deal with the devil” if they reelect him. Referencing the tempation of Christ by Satan, Matthews said of Americans: “[Trump] will tell us why we should love him. He will promise us the world if we only bow down and worship him. If this sounds familiar, it's happened before. You may have read about it before, probably in church. It's the classic deal with the devil.”
You know it’s bad when partisan Democrat James Carville has to be the one to call out the party’s far-left tilt. Appearing on MSNBC, Tuesday, the former Bill Clinton operative warned of a coming liberal “cult” and blasted the press for going “AOC crazy.” He repeatedly predicted that Democrats could turn into the deeply unpopular British Labour Party. Clearly, Carville isn’t a fan of socialism as a winning strategy. He told journalists Brian Williams and others: “The press corps went AOC crazy."
As the Democratic caucus in Iowa descended into chaos and mockery, Chris Matthews turned up just before midnight on Monday to trash the “three car funeral” and suggest it might be a preview of a coming Democratic disaster for the party. He also warned of a “historic loss for the country” if Democrats couldn’t get their act together. Matthews fumed, “The guy in the White House is chuckling all night here, showing the Democrats can't even get a three car funeral organized or whatever you want to call it. I would say to the people of Iowa, ‘Will the last person leaving Des Moines, please turn out the lights?’” This has not been a success.”
While waiting for the results in the Iowa caucus on Monday night, MSNBC turned into a fight between liberals as the network’s journalists and guests fought over “oligarch” Michael Bloomberg vs. Bernie Sanders. But it was former Republican Nicolle Wallace who provide the awkward moment of the early evening. She repeatedly referred to Donald Trump as the “enemy” and then made a political metaphor about how “a Republican would take Mike [Bloomberg's] money and say, ‘Help me kill Trump.’”
As impeachment and the Iowa caucus converge, some of the hosts on MSNBC were panicking that Bernie Sanders would lose to Donald Trump. On Monday afternoon, this fear prompted a historically bizarre rant from MSNBC analyst Steve Schmidt over how the “sociopath” Donald Trump would beat Bernie Sanders. He also insisted that Trump is now the most “powerful” president ever, beating out FDR and Lincoln.
Just prior to the Patriots facing off against the Rams in Super Bowl LIII, Donald Trump will talk to CBS journalist Margaret Brennan during the pregame show. It’s his second as President since talking to Fox's Bill O’Reilly for the 2017 Super Bowl (skipping it in 2018). For most of Barack Obama’s eight years, he had the luxury of softball interviews with liberal journalists. (Except in 2011 and 2014 when Fox had the game and O’Reilly got to offer questions.) Will Trump be given that same type of chummy, friendly interview? It’s not likely.
As it appears more and more likely that the Senate will be moving to exclude witnesses and acquit Donald Trump, the journalistic reaction has become frenzied. After MSNBC compared it to letting a wife beater go, NBC’s Jon Meacham on Friday fretted that the Senate is making Trump a “king” who is “above the law.” He warned, “President Trump is functionally a monarch at this point. If the king does it, it's okay.”
As Thursday turned into Friday and impeachment acquittal seemed more likely, the late night coverage on MSNBC devolved into hyperbolic claims of the end of “truth” and that Republican Senators are about to let go the equivalent of a wife beater. Host Ali Velshi turned to the liberal media’s voice of reason, Michael Moore.
Another media outlet seems to be souring on the Senate impeachment trial and the way the Democrats have handled it. As it appears more likely that there won’t be witnesses and that an acquittal could have some Democratic support, CBS’s Norah O’Donnell on Thursday predicted a coming “nightmare” for the left. Hillary Clinton’s former campaign manager suggested impeachment could have little impact on 2020 and a CBS voter group unanimously predicted a Trump win.
As Democrats become more glum about the possibility of getting witnesses and extending the impeachment trial, their counterparts in the media are sharpening criticism of how the whole thing has been handled. Over two hours on Thursday, Chuck Todd repeatedly lamented “missed opportunities” and failure to be “aggressive.”
The supposedly reasonable PBS on Tuesday abounded with dark conspiracy theories about the impeached Donald Trump fomenting violence in November after losing, as well as whether America is turning into Nazi Germany. Veteran journalist Ted Koppel shot down that theory, but engaged in the idea of mass violence by dejected Trump voters.
With witnesses in the House impeachment trial looking questionable, ABC on Tuesday lamented the Democratic strategy, lashing out at Nancy Pelosi and the House for botching the effort to remove Donald Trump. During a live interview, Senator Richard Blumenthal said of the move to not have witnesses: “They may have the votes at this moment.” An alert George Stephanopoulos noticed this and remarked that the Democrat “may have buried the lede,” adding, “He said about six sentences in they may have the votes at the moment.”
Given his tendency to just say whatever comes to mind, sometimes even the liberal Chris Matthews will float comments not considered acceptable to the official MSNBC line. On Tuesday, he blurted out that “I just don’t get that argument” that Joe and Hunter Biden should be ignored at the Senate impeachment trial.
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.