CNN’s Michelle Kosinski: ‘It Was Benjamin Netanyahu’s Turn to Get Schooled by the White House’

Leading off CNN’s coverage on New Day of the latest news concerning the relationship between the U.S. and Israel, White House correspondent Michelle Kosinski ruled that “it was Benjamin Netanyahu’s turn to get schooled by the White House” after the Obama administration responded to the Israeli Prime Minister’s reelection and feelings about a two-state solution.

Before tossing to Kosinski, co-host Alisyn Camerota reported that “there's a new complication in U.S./Israeli relations” after Obama called Netanyahu on Thursday “to congratulate him for winning reelection,” but also to send “a warning to the Prime Minister that the U.S. is now reassessing their relationship.”

Once Kosinski made her remark about Netanyahu being “schooled by the White House,” she promoted the White House’s response to the reelected Prime Minister: “[V]ery publicly, [it] said that words matter and that there are consequences.”

In a description that the liberal media would almost never use to describe Obama, she then took to following the narrative of regarding Netanyahu’s rhetoric “highly controversial” and noted that the White House has called his statements “divisive, saying that it erodes the shared values between the U.S. and Israel.”

After a soundbite from White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest, Kosinski mocked Netanyahu and any possible distrust or disapproval of the President’s decision to reassess their relationship: “If any of this upsets Netanyahu, well he always has House Speaker John Boehner to talk to. Who’s just announced he is going to go to Israel within the next two weeks, and meet with Netanyahu.”

Following that report during the 6:00 a.m. hour, a similar segment took place near the top of the 7:00 a.m. hour. It was then that substitute co-host John Berman stated that “President Obama finally did call” Netanyahu, but “let him know that” his reelection “comes with a big price” as “the U.S. is reassessing its relationship with Israel.”

Kosinski then returned with a similar report from the White House and led off this way:

Yeah, not the warmest congratulations ever. I mean, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu came here and, most uncomfortably, schooled the White House on how bad its negotiations with Iran are. Well now, it is the White House’s turn, very publicly blasting those two things that Netanyahu said in the lead-up to his election. First, that there would never be a two-state solution with Palestine while he's Prime Minister and that his supporters should try to counteract all the Arabs heading to the polls. The President brought this up in the phone call yesterday and the Press Secretary mentioned no fewer than 19 times in his press briefing yesterday that the U.S. is now reevaluating its position moving forward, even though Netanyahu has since tried to walk back everything he said. 

When it came to bringing up Boehner at the end of this report, Kosinski instead said that “the drama will continue here because, in the next couple of weeks, House Speaker John Boehner is going to travel to Israel and meet with Netanyahu.”

The relevant portions of the transcript from CNN’s New Day on March 20 are transcribed below.

CNN’s New Day
March 20, 2015
6:10 a.m. Eastern

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: Developing Story; Obama “Reassessing” Relationship with Israel]

ALISYN CAMEROTA: And there's a new complication in U.S./Israeli relations this morning. President Obama calling Benjamin Netanyahu yesterday, to congratulate him for winning reelection two days after the fact, but he also issued a warning to the Prime Minister that the U.S. is now reassessing their relationship. We have complete coverage beginning with CNN White House correspondent Michelle Kosinski. What’s the word there this morning, Michelle? 

MICHELLE KOSINSKI: Hey Alisyn, well, this time, it was Benjamin Netanyahu’s turn to get schooled by the White House which, very publicly, said that words matter and that there are consequences. I mean, the President has now called Netanyahu and there was a word of congratulations, but he also brought up these highly controversial things that Netanyahu said just before his reelection. Namely, that he said there would never be a two-state solution with Palestine while he was prime minister and that his supporters should counteract all of the Arabs going to the polls in droves, as he put it.

The White House calling this divisive, saying that it erodes the shared values between the U.S. and Israel. I mean, the Press Secretary mentioned no fewer than 19 times yesterday during the press briefing that, as a result, the U.S. is now re-evaluating its position, moving forward, even though Netanyahu has now walked back virtually everything he said.

(....)

KOSINSKI: And part of that reevaluation, the White House says, does include the U.S. constantly standing up for Israel in the U.N. If any of this upsets Netanyahu, well he always has House Speaker John Boehner to talk to. Who’s just announced he is going to go to Israel within the next two weeks, and meet with Netanyahu.

(....)

7:03 am. Eastern

JOHN BERMAN: President Obama finally did call Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to congratulate him on his election win and to let him know that it comes with a big price. The President warned Netanyahu that the U.S. is reassessing its relationship with Israel, mainly because of the Prime Minister's vow to never allow statehood for the Palestinians. Let's bring in CNN White House correspondent Michelle Kosinski. Good morning, Michelle. 

KOSINSKI: Hey John. Yeah, not the warmest congratulations ever. I mean, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu came here and, most uncomfortably, schooled the White House on how bad its negotiations with Iran are. Well now, it is the White House’s turn, very publicly blasting those two things that Netanyahu said in the lead-up to his election. First, that there would never be a two-state solution with Palestine while he's Prime Minister and that his supporters should try to counteract all the Arabs heading to the polls. The President brought this up in the phone call yesterday and the Press Secretary mentioned no fewer than 19 times in his press briefing yesterday that the U.S. is now reevaluating its position moving forward, even though Netanyahu has since tried to walk back everything he said. 

(....)

KOSINSKI: I mean, the White House has even spelled out that part of the reevaluation includes the U.S. constantly backing up Israel and standing up for it in the U.N., but don't worry, the drama will continue here because, in the next couple of weeks, House Speaker John Boehner is going to travel to Israel and meet with Netanyahu. Back to you guys. 

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: Developing Overnight; Speaker Boehner to Visit Israel]

CAMEROTA: Yes, the drama does continue it seems every day. Michelle, thanks so much.

NBDaily Foreign Policy Israel/Palestine Liberals & Democrats Judaism CNN New Day Video Government & Press President Barack Obama President Obama Alisyn Camerota John Berman Michelle Kosinski Benjamin Netanyahu Barack Obama
Curtis Houck's picture