SHAMELESS: Sunday Shows Pull Reagan Appeal To Authority Card On Pro-Israel GOPs

May 12th, 2024 5:15 PM

Much has changed in America over the years, but one tradition remains; the use of hymnals on Sundays. Not in churches, though- but by the Regime Media who on the Lord’s Day will often squawk out the same talking point. Today’s media hymn: the clumsy appeal to authority citing Ronald Reagan, as justification for President Joe Biden’s decision to withhold munitions shipments to Israel in protest of the Rafah offensive.

Watch as Sen. Tom Cotton absolutely SHUTS DOWN Margaret Brennan’s attempt at an appeal to Reagan’s authority on CBS Face the Nation, as aired on Sunday, May 12th, 2024:

MARGARET BRENNAN: I want to ask you more broadly, because people like Senator van Hollen, who is going to be on here, will talk about the principle and the spirit and the meaning of U.S. law. And you know that past presidents have withheld military aid to Israel to force changes in behavior. President Reagan did that. President Bush did that. Why do you have a problem with President Biden doing that?

TOM COTTON: Well- first off, when you talk about the principle and the spirit of U.S. law, it seems to me like they're not talking about the letter of U.S. Law, because Tony Blinken's own report concluded they did not violate U.S. law. Ronald Reagan’s decision to pause the delivery of fighter jets in the '80s was totally different from what happens here- what’s happened here. Israel is fighting a war of survival against a terrorist group that committed the worst atrocity against Jews since World War II. In the 1980s, an Israeli ambassador had been targeted for assassination. Ronald Reagan knew that the pause of fighter jets would not interfere with Israel's fighting, because they had plenty of fighters. They did not pause munitions. Joe Biden is not sending munitions in the middle of a shooting war that’s a war of survival, and look at the broader context. Israel knew that Ronald Reagan had its back in the region. He sank half of Iran's navy. Joe Biden has consistently given Iran hundreds of billions of sanctions relief that exactly funded groups like Hamas and Hezbollah.

BRENNAN: And you know that they dispute that and they are still sending weapons.

The Regime Media are either disgusted by Ronald Reagan and hate everything he stands for, or too young to remember Reagan but know just enough to reflexively hate him because he is still revered by conservatives. Regardless of individual circumstance, the deployment of the appeal to Reagan’s authority is intended to serve the same purpose: to cow Republicans into compliance with whatever issue the Regime Media is advocating for on any given day: in this instance, Biden’s aforementioned hold on munitions transfers to Israel.

In Brennan’s case, her hollow attempt at an appeal to Reagan’s authority is so thoroughly shut down by Cotton that she has little choice but to revert to White House talking points.  

NBC’s Kristen Welker attempted the same tactic with Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) on NBC’s Meet the Depressed, with similar results:

So incensed is Graham at the empty appeal to authority that he stomps all over Welker’s use of a variant of “critics say”- “military officials say”. What military officials were these, precisely? And how were these unnamed military officials able to preemptively react to Graham’s answer on the decision to drop nuclear bombs on Japan? One suspects that Graham was knowingly addressing “General Tristan Melker” here. 

And on ABC This Week, we get Martha Raddatz using Reagan’s decision on fighter jets as an “aha” against House Foreign Affairs Committee Chair Rep. Michael McCaul (R-TX):

The media despise Ronald Reagan and everything he stood for, including and especially the principles of Peace through Strength as pertains to American foreign policy. But they are unafraid to use Reagan against today’s Republicans in an attempt to score points in support of the Biden administration. Remember Alinsky’s Rule Four: “Make the enemy live up to its own book of rules.” Today the Alinskyites in the media failed, and did so miserably.

Click "expand" to view transcripts of the aforementioned interview segments as aired on their respective programs on Sunday, May 12th, 2024:


KRISTEN WELKER: But let me ask it this way, because President Biden is not the first president to use armed shipments to try to influence Israeli policy. As you know former president Ronald Reagan on multiple occasions withheld weapons to impact Israel's military actions. Did President Reagan show that using U.S. military aid as leverage can actually be an effective way to rein in and impact Israel's policy?

LINDSEY GRAHAM: When you're telling the world you’re gonna restrict weapons delivery to the Jewish state who is fighting a three-front war for their survival, it embowdens Iran, it emboldens Hamas. (Yahya) Sinwar is probably juiced up on the idea there’s daylight between the United States and Israel. The hostage deal is harder. This the worst decision in the history of the U.S.- Israel relationship, to deny weapons at a time the Jewish state can be destroyed, so here's what I would say. There is some hope we can get over this. Non-negotiable, the destruction of Hamas. Nobody in Israel will allow Hamas to be standing militarily or politically when this is over. How we get there is subject to negotiation. My problem is not with the weapons that Israel is using. My problem is with the tactics that Hamas is using, and the idea that America would not send a nickel of aid echoed by a United States Senator when all of the Jews are trying to be killed by radical Islamic groups tells us where we are at as a nation. The Republican Party is with Israel without apology.

WELKER: But historians would say, “why is it OK for Reagan to do it and not President Biden, but let me ask you about the big deal”

GRAHAM: Well, why is it OK- can I say this? Why is it OK for America to not two- to drop two nuclear bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki to end their existential threat war? Why was it OK for us to do that? I thought it was OK. 

WELKER: Senator? 

GRAHAM: So Israel, do whatever you have to do to survive as a Jewish state. WHATEVER YOU HAVE TO DO.


WELKER: Senator- again, military officials say the technology has changed. But let me ask you about how all of this could impact the-- let me ask-- let me ask you something.

GRAHAM: Yeah, these military officials that you’re talking about are full of crap.


MARTHA RADDATZ: You regularly invoked- or invoke former President Ronald Reagan. You heard Senator Coons bring up the fact that he paused weapons to Israel as well. You constantly ask yourself, “what would Ronald Reagan do?” That’s what Ronald Reagan did.

MICHAEL MCCAUL: Well, I think- look. I think in this case to say, look. I'm all for the humanitarian piece here, and that can be done. But I am not for saying -- what the president said is different. He said, I- if they go into Rafah, I'm not supplying the weapons, period. He didn't say something else. That's what he said, and I have to go by his words because you know what? They're not giving us any information. The State Department, this administration, have been- not been transparent- they’ve been hiding the 8-ball, and that’s what he said.