As anticipated by NewsBusters, the immediate reaction from the liberal media to Barack Obama’s selection of Merrick Garland was to go right to their playbook and sell the anti-gun justice as a “moderate” pick that liberals won’t be “happy” with and only unreasonable GOPers could oppose.
During live coverage of Obama’s announcement, on Wednesday, ABC’s George Stephanopoulos declared that Garland was “a moderate” that in “any other year” would be seen as a “safe pick.” The Good Morning America anchor then threw to his colleague Terry Moran who tried to downplay fears that he would be seen as too left as he proclaimed: “Liberals have not been happy with his name surfacing in previous vacancies. This is a nomination that President Obama is essentially saying to the Senate here is somebody that we can do business with. Take him and see him for what he is. The distinguished moderate judge. However, these are not reasonable times.”
Over on MSNBC, Brian Williams invited on SCOTUSblog’s Tom Goldstein to pronounce: “He is the exact opposite of what you would expect if you were saying that the President was trying to motivate Democrats to rally behind or try to help a Democrat in a presidential election because he is a 63-year-old white guy...and in some ways...slighty more conservative than Justice [Antonin] Scalia.”
In 2007, Garland voted to undo a D.C. Circuit court decision that struck down that city’s restrictive gun control policies but when CBS’s Jan Crawford was asked by This Morning co-anchor Gayle King if anything “works against” Garland “in terms of his positions or past record” Crawford responded: “I see nothing.”