MSNBC's Roberts Marks 'Super Tuesday' by Boosting Unions, Bashing Miss. Personhood, Voter ID Initiatives

November 8th, 2011 1:09 PM

“There are several battles that are playing out across this country” today, MSNBC anchor Thomas Roberts noted as he opened the 11 a.m. Eastern hour of live coverage on what the network is calling this year's "Super Tuesday."

Roberts quickly established that he and his network were in the trenches with liberals on every one of those "battles":

This hour we look at all the issues that Americans are voting on right now that could decide where the nation is headed come 2012. Will the unions score a big victory in Ohio? Will reproductive rights get a major setback in Mississippi? And what kind of impact will voter ID laws have across this country?

The MSNBC anchor was joined the entire hour by left-wing magazine columnist Melissa Harris-Perry, who weighed in on the aforementioned issues from a liberal perspective. What’s more, Roberts failed to bring any conservatives on to discuss or debate the merits of the ballot initiatives mentioned at the top of the hour.

On the Ohio collective bargaining issue, Roberts started by insisting that former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee (R) was “encouraging deception as a way to suppress the vote,” playing a soundbite that was clearly a jokey exchange about how Ohio conservatives should tell their family and friends who are for repealing the new law to “tell them the election has been moved to a different date.”

Roberts was joined by former Gov. Ted Strickland (D-Ohio) -- whom Gov. Kasich (R-Ohio) defeated in 2010 -- as well as Harris-Perry and union leader Larry Hanley. For his part, Strickland ran with Roberts’s charge of GOP efforts at suppressing voters.

On the personhood initiative question in Mississippi, Roberts discussed the controversy with Harris-Perry and fertility specialist Dr. John Isaacs, who of course has a vested interest in the personhood amendment failing. No pro-life activist was included in the discussion.

Finally, closing out the hour, Roberts turned to Harris-Perry and Marc Morial of the National Urban League to dismiss voter ID laws as “unnecessary” at best and a form of “poll tax” and back-door disenfranchisement at worst.

Harris-Perry and Morial were particularly concerned with Initiative 27 in Mississippi, which would enshrine a photo ID requirement in the Magnolia State’s constitution.

"Make sure you log on and read's special look at how Mississippi's voter ID law could set the clock back on African-American voters," Roberts directed viewers at the close of that segment.

Left unnoted by Roberts, however, was that a recent poll by the liberal Pubic Policy Polling firm finds 64 percent of Mississippians favor Initiative 27. What’s more, the constitutional amendment allows for certain exemptions for “residents of state-licensed care facilities” as well as “religious objectors.” Additionally, the constitutional amendment would require that voters may “obtain photo identification without charge” from the state government.