ABC and NBC Move on from Perry’s 2016 Launch; Mock Him on Late Night Shows Instead

After providing minimal coverage of former Texas Republican Governor Rick Perry’s 2016 announcement on Thursday night, ABC and NBC moved on from the story all together with zero mentions of Perry or the 2016 campaign on their Friday morning newscasts. 

While those network programs failed to cover Perry, their late night comedy shows from the night before didn’t as they spent plenty of time mocking Perry over his intelligence and eating of a corn dog back in 2011.

With the Friday edition of ABC’s Good Morning America showing no interest in providing any political news to its viewers, Jimmy Kimmel Live stood in for them by going after Perry’s intelligence and Texas roots. Following a clip from Perry’s announcement, host Jimmy Kimmel observed that Perry was “sweating like a big” and that “he’s wearing glasses now, which means he's smarter than the last time [in 2012].”

Kimmel continued by opining that “Rick Perry isn’t known for his intellect” and thus “makes George W. Bush look like George H.W. Bush, but he's at it again and why not?” Before shifting to another topic, Kimmel took one last dig at the former Texas governor: “I mean, there are only so many coyotes you can shoot on your ranch and what else does he have to do?”

Just as ABC did, NBC’s Today failed to mention Perry on Friday while Thursday’s Tonight Show did. Host Jimmy Fallon made plenty of room for Perry in his opening monologue and first joked that, “luckily for us, now he wants to be in charge of people” after Perry admitted that he wasn’t able to become a veterinarian when he was growing up because “his grades weren’t good enough.”

By emphasizing that this second bid signals that Perry “seems dead set on winning” and is “serious,” Fallon read three “quotes” (two real and one fake) from Perry that were placed on-screen with a picture of Perry eating a massive corn dog in Iowa from 2011. 

Once they were all read, Fallon griped that Perry should not have done that and pointed out how “[t]here’s plenty of other things to eat at the fair” that would not have produced photos that could be taken the wrong way.

Along with Perry, Fallon also had a few quips to make about Democratic presidential candidate and former Rhode Island Governor Lincoln Chafee concerning his campaign promise to fully implement the metrics system:

Actually, during his announcement, Chafee said, “it would help our economy if we embraced the metric system.” Finally answering the question, what's the world's worst campaign slogan?  [LAUGHTER] It's like, bring back the metric system! [APPLAUSE] Right? Bring it back. Kilograms! Bring back the Dewey decimal system – oh we never lost it – oh, never mind. Doesn't matter!

With ABC and NBC on the sidelines, Friday’s CBS This Morning offered a full segment on the 2016 campaign with new Face the Nation host John Dickerson that dove into Perry’s announcement and his chances for success against the rest of the field.

A partial transcript from ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel Live on June 5 is transcribed below.

ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel Live
June 5, 2015
12:34 a.m. Eastern

JIMMY KIMMEL: Hey, there's a new – we have a new Republican candidate for president who also happens to be an old Republican candidate for president, former Texas Governor Rick Perry. You remember Rick Perry? [CHEERS AND APPLAUSE] He was hoping you wouldn't. Rick Perry, you may recall, ran for president in 2012 and that went over so well that today, he announced he's doing it again. 

PERRY: Let's give them a president who leads us in the direction of our highest dreams, our best dreams, our highest hopes and our greatest promise. 

KIMMEL: Boy, is he sweating like a pig. I mean, if he’s going to be president, give him some air conditioning and you may notice he's wearing glasses now, which means he's smarter than the last time. [LAUGHTER] Rick Perry isn't known for his intellect. Rick Perry makes George W. Bush look like George H.W. Bush, but he's at it again and why not? [LAUGHTER] I mean, there are only so many coyotes you can shoot on your ranch and what else does he have to do?

The relevant portions of the transcript from NBC’s The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon on June 5 can be found below.

NBC’s The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon
June 4, 2015
11:38 p.m. Eastern

JIMMY FALLON: Actually, during his announcement, Chafee said, “it would help our economy if we embraced the metric system.” Finally answering the question, what's the world's worst campaign slogan?  [LAUGHTER] It's like, bring back the metric system! [APPLAUSE] Right? Bring it back. Kilograms! Bring back the Dewey decimal system – oh we never lost it – oh, never mind. Doesn't matter!

(....)

FALLON: And over on the Republican side today, former Texas Governor Rick Perry announced that he is running for president and I read that growing up, he wanted to be a veterinarian, but his grades weren't good enough. [LAUGHTER] Luckily for us, now he wants to be in charge of people. [LAUGHTER] So that's great. [LAUGHTER AND APPLAUSE] That's right, four years after his first presidential campaign, Rick Perry has officially launched his second bid for the Republican nomination and this time, Perry seems dead set on winning. He's serious. Take a look at what he had to say. He said [WITH PICTURE OF PERRY EATING CORN DOG], “If we're going to revive this American dream again we need a president who provides leadership.” [LAUGHTER AND APPLAUSE] Perry went on to say [WITH PICTURE OF PERRY EATING CORN DOG]: “Someone who's been tested and a president who tells the American people the truth.” [LAUGHTER] And finally, Perry said, quote [WITH PICTURE OF PERRY EATING CORN DOG]: “Because it's important to be honest. Like, say, if you see one of your friends who's running for president start to shove a a corndog into his mouth with a a bunch of cameras around, then maybe say something, like, ‘Hey Rick, now's not a great time to eat a corndog. Put it down now.’” [LAUGHTER AND APPLAUSE] Don't do it. There's plenty of other things to eat at the fair.

NB Daily Campaigns & Elections 2016 Presidential Media Bias Debate Bias by Omission Conservatives & Republicans Liberals & Democrats ABC Good Morning America Jimmy Kimmel Live NBC Today Tonight Show Video Rick Perry John Dickerson Jimmy Kimmel Jimmy Fallon Lincoln Chafee
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