It comes down to two possibilities, neither appealing -- Bill Press is either completely clueless or inclined to deliberately parrot an obviously dishonest political narrative. Then again, it could be both.
Perhaps you've seen the video of rising leftist kommissar Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez dancing on a rooftop when she was a student at Boston University in homage to the '80s coming-of-age screen classic The Breakfast Club.
If you're like me, you first saw this footage on Facebook as produced by Huffington Post offshoot NowThis News, which touts itself as "the #1 video news brand in social media today." The video, titled "Conservatives Try to Shame Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez for Dancing Video from College," features clips of Ocasio-Cortez and college chums deftly emulating dance moves from the film. Never let it be said that the woman's appalling ignorance of history and economics keeps her from cutting a rug when the mood strikes.
Problem is, the video also shows a pronounced lack of conservatives, shaming or otherwise. Fellow NewsBuster Clay Waters deftly skewered this phony controversy by pointing out how the video contains predictable praise from besotten left-wingers -- while the sole apparent criticism from a conservative comes from an anonymous Twitter account, since deleted. Even worse, Newsweek's coverage of the fake controversy is laughably bad, as Waters outlined in withering detail.
The liberal inanities kept coming Tuesday, this time from radio host, author, and syndicated columnist Bill Press on his radio show/podcast, with Roll Call reporter Jennifer Shutt going along for the ride:
PRESS: I want to talk about, a little bit, not much time left here, about the new members of Congress. What are you seeing about, from these freshmen in Congress? I mean, they're dancing in the halls! How dare they! A member of Congress, dance?!
SHUTT: I mean, all politics aside ---
PRESS (still clutching his pearls): God!
SHUTT: --- as a millennial I don't find dancing that scandalous ---
SHUTT: --- watched that and I was sort of really surprised. I thought, we're supposed to be scandalized that she is fully-clothed dancing on a roof?! Like, that's, I don't know anyone who made it through college without doing something similar! (chuckles)
Hold on a sec -- is Shutt actually suggesting this might be scandalous had Ocasio-Cortez not been wearing clothes ...?
And "we're supposed to be scandalized", a clearly non scandalized Shutt asks -- in response to straw-man claims in the NowThis video that were dutifully peddled by other liberal media. Come to think of it, isn't this what the Russians are alleged to have done on social media during the 2016 campaign? Birds of a feather indeed.
A clearly smitten Peter Ogburn, Press's producer and chatty sidekick, just can't contain himself --
OGBURN: I have to say, I watched the video and I, uh, really need to just say that, uh, she is awesome!
PRESS (seconds that emotion): Yes!
OGBURN (continues hyperventilating): She's awesome!
OGBURN: Like, she's so great!
PRESS: And so, her response is not to, oh, I'm sorry I was so unladylike, I'm sorry I did something ...
SHUTT: It's not unladylike, first of all!
PRESS (backpedals): No, exactly.
OGBURN (covering for Press): Right, yes, exactly.
PRESS: So then she just dances in front of her office, right, on the Hill and puts out that video. She is one savvy person, she really is. But then this idea that Republicans would make a big deal of that, right?
Right -- the "idea" put in your head by other liberals in media, which you then dutifully parrot. Let us know when you find a Republican outraged over this. Take all the time you need, seeing how it will be drawn-out and futile.
Shutt discerned a possible motive for the non-existent anger among conservatives: "After the past couple of years in covering and watching the ethical issues that some Republicans have had with respect to sexual harassment."
Translation: Just when you thought they couldn't sink any lower.
Doing her part to perpetuate the fraud, Ocasio-Cortez told The Hill she finds it funny that the video is "considered to be disqualifying" (uh, by whom ...?) and "it is unsurprising to me that Republicans would think having fun should be disqualifying or illegal." This from a politician who told 60 Minutes that it is more important to be "morally right" than to be "precisely, factually, and semantically correct." Is it morally right to make demonstrable falsehoods?