NBC Skips Obama’s Beer Gaffe on Washington; Spent Three Straight Nights on Palin’s Paul Revere Tale

During a live interview with NBC’s Savannah Guthrie on Sunday, President Obama told her how, at the White House, “[w]e make beer – The first president since George Washington to make some booze in the White House.” 

While it may be true that beer was brewed at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, the President’s statement about former President George Washington also making beer there was far from accurate. Washington did, in fact, brew his own beer, but not from the White House since he never lived there (as John Adams was the first president to occupy it in 1800).

In a move that was far from surprising, ABC and CBS joined with NBC in steering away from the President’s gaffe by giving it zero mentions on their morning and evening newscasts. Not even an acknowledgment that even the interview took place appeared on NBC Nightly News.

The Fox News Channel’s Special Report with Bret Baier did cover the gaffe, however, to the tune of one minute and 14 seconds during the show’s “Grapevine” segment. Anchor Bret Baier stated how:

[H]istorians were quick to point out our first President has been falsely accused. While he did make his own alcohol, he did so at his own home, Mt. Vernon. He never even lived in the White House. John Adams was its first occupant in 1800.

Seconds later, Baier read a portion of a statement from Brent Bozell, President and Founder of the Media Research Center (which is the parent company of NewsBusters):

The Media Research Center says if George W. Bush made that mistake it would have been a different story. Quote, “[t]he networks love mocking Republicans...for mangling American history. It underlines their certainty that Republicans just aren't very smart. Conversely, in their minds, Barack Obama is a genius...So they just pretend it never happened.”

When Sarah Palin recounted Paul Revere’s ride in June 2011, some questioned the accuracy of her retelling. From then on, NBC News was there to lead the way. Unlike President Obama’s gaffe, NBC Nightly News alone spent three straight nights on the subject from June 5-7 with two of those days featuring full reports from then-correspondent Lee Cowan.

The relevant portions of the transcript from FNC’s Special Report with Bret Baier on February 2 can be found below.

FNC’s Special Report with Bret Baier
February 2, 2015
6:25 p.m. Eastern [TEASE]

BRET BAIER: Next in the Grapevine, a beer and a history lesson with President Obama.

(....)

6:29 p.m. Eastern

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE CAPTION: Kitchen Confidential]

BAIER: The annual presidential interview before the Super Bowl got a little lively this year. Rather than sitting down for a hard news interview as is customary, NBC opted to put the tough questions on hold and instead interview the Commander-in-Chief in the White House kitchen.

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: Not a Wing Man] 

Among the information, the President divulged, he prefers enjoys chips and guacamole over wings, but the centerpiece of the interview, beer brewed at the White House. 

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: Home Brew] 

The accompanying history lesson, however, was not quite accurate. 

PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: We make beer. First President since George Washington to make some booze in the White House. 

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: Much A-Brew About Nothing]

BAIER: Well, historians were quick to point out our first President has been falsely accused. While he did make his own alcohol, he did so at his own home, Mt. Vernon. He never even lived in the White House. John Adams was its first occupant in 1800.

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: Brew-Ha-Ha]

The error went unreported this morning by the major networks. The Media Research Center says if George W. Bush made that mistake it would have been a different story. Quote, “[t]he networks love mocking Republicans...for mangling American history. It underlines their certainty that Republicans just aren't very smart. Conversely, in their minds, Barack Obama is a genius...So they just pretend it never happened.”

Media Bias Debate Bias by Omission Double Standards Conservatives & Republicans Liberals & Democrats ABC World News Tonight CBS CBS Evening News NBC NBC Nightly News Fox News Channel Special Report Video Press Release Government & Press President Barack Obama President Obama Brent Bozell Bret Baier Savannah Guthrie Barack Obama George Washington
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