Nets Cheer Gun Control Protest Becoming Get-Out-the-Vote Operation

Following adoring coverage of Saturday’s March for Our Lives gun control protest, on Monday, the broadcast networks were thrilled that the anti-gun movement was being turned into a liberal get-out-the-vote operation ahead of the 2018 midterm election. Journalists on the NBC, ABC, and CBS morning shows could barely contain their excitement at the prospect of the teenage activists “turning their attention to November’s elections” in an effort “to put many Republicans on defense.”

“Well, students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School are returning home this morning after flooding the nation’s capital over the weekend....And they are now turning their attention toward the elections in November,” proclaimed co-host Savannah Guthrie on NBC’s Today show. In the report that followed, correspondent Kerry Sanders eagerly touted: “[H]undreds of thousands of young voters and soon-to-be-young voters took to the streets here in Parkland, in Washington, and across the country, demanding a change to our nation’s gun laws.”

 

 

After playing a clip of protesters chanting, “Vote them out! Vote them out!,” Sanders declared: “This morning, organizers of the March for Our Lives are focusing on real change.” The headline on screen blared: “From March to November; Student Activists Now Look to Influence Election.”

A soundbite was featured of Stoneman Douglas senior David Hogg imploring: “You need to get out and vote in every election. None of this matters if they don’t do that.” Sanders highlighted: “During the rally, volunteers and organizers registering young people to vote.”

Wrapping up the fawning segment, the reporter wishfully observed: “If every graduating senior in this nation were to register to vote, that would be 3.6 million new voters. Something the student leaders here say they recognize will be their focus so they have power at the ballot box.”

On Friday, ahead of the march, Sanders enthusiastically announced that the liberal students would “teach the grown-ups a lesson.”

At the top of ABC’s Good Morning America, co-host Robin Roberts hailed the weekend demonstration: “Marching on. Hundreds of thousands of students and families demanding action on gun control, saying enough. What’s next for this massive movement as Congress is put on notice?”

Introducing a report on the topic minutes later, Roberts was giddy over the idea that the “huge March for Our Lives rallies all across the country and world” provided “challenging words for lawmakers.” Congressional Correspondent Mary Bruce agreed: “Survivors making passionate pleas and young activists sending a clear warning to politicians: Beware, the voters are coming.”

After Bruce lamented that “Republican leaders have little to no appetite to act on guns,” Roberts hopefully asked: “So the students and many are looking toward the midterm elections. Will we see a real impact come November?” Bruce assured her: “Yeah, Robin, there’s no question that this could be a really major issue in these elections. Which is something that we haven’t seen in decades and is likely to put many Republicans on defense.”

The reporter concluded: “But one thing is very clear. These young people are motivated, they’re registering people to vote, they’re going to keep the issue of gun control front and center.” Roberts added: “That is very, very clear.” Fellow co-host Michael Strahan chimed in: “They’re marching for change.” Roberts replied: “Yes, they are.”

“The Florida students behind the Never Again movement hope to build on the momentum created by their March for Our Lives protest over the weekend” asserted co-host Gayle King on CBS This Morning. Correspondent Adriana Diaz followed:

The Parkland students say their march here in Washington was just the beginning. And now they want to turn their voices into votes. At marches nationwide this weekend, nearly 5,000 people were registered to vote, many of them millennials.

The headline displayed on screen throughout the report promised: “Marching Forward; Parkland Students Vow to Keep Gun Control Fight Growing.”

Applauding how the “ocean of activists delivered their demands at top volume,” Diaz promoted more activism to come: “The group is already working on their next steps, including call for town halls nationwide on April 7th, a second national walkout on April 20th, and a voter registration campaign to register teens before November’s midterm election.”

To CBS’s credit, the segment briefly acknowledged that “not all students feel included in the movement.” Diaz noted that Marjory Stoneman Douglas student and Second Amendment supporter Kyle Kashuv appeared on Sunday’s Face the Nation to present a different perspective. A clip ran of Kashuv telling moderator Margaret Brennan: “I agree with them completely that this cannot happen ever again, but I differ with them on what policy needs to be made.”

However, such dissension was quickly brushed aside as Diaz moved back to the gun restriction narrative: “But Senator Tim Kaine said Congress is already building on the work of the movement.” Kaine insisted: “But the activism of these young people is actually changing the equation.”

While many in the liberal media have repeatedly attempted to portray the gun control push by the Parkland, FL students as nonpolitical, Monday’s coverage made it abundantly clear that the movement is actually quite partisan. The goal has now become the defeat of politicians that don’t support the anti-gun rights agenda and the press has vowed to keep the issue “front and center” through November.

Here is a full transcript of the March 26 report on NBC’s Today:

7:08 AM ET

SAVANNAH GUTHRIE: Well, students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School are returning home this morning after flooding the nation’s capital over the weekend, leading hundreds of thousands demanding gun reform in the March for our Lives. And they are now turning their attention toward the elections in November. NBC’s Kerry Sanders is in Parkland this morning, where the kids there are saying they’re just getting started. Kerry, good morning.

KERRY SANDERS: Well, good morning. The students are indeed back in town, but they’re on spring break, like so many kids across the country. This after hundreds of thousands of young voters and soon-to-be-young voters took to the streets here in Parkland, in Washington, and across the country, demanding a change to our nation’s gun laws.

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: From March to November; Student Activists Now Look to Influence Election]

PROTESTERS: Vote them out! Vote them out!

SANDERS: This morning, organizers of the March for our Lives are focusing on real change.

CAMERON KASKY: Welcome to the revolution. [Cheers]  

SANDERS: After inspiring an estimated 800,000 people to march on the nation’s capital, survivors of the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School are turning their attention to November’s elections.

DAVID HOGG: You need to get out and vote in every election. None of this matters if they don’t do that.

SANDERS: During the rally, volunteers and organizers registering young people to vote.

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN [MARCH FOR OUR LIVES VOLUNTEER]: Each person has a vote and you want to be heard.

SANDERS: In the crowd, victims and survivors watching impassioned speeches and politically-charged celebrity performances. With untold thousands more gathering in more than 800 cities in the United States and around the world. Beatle legend Paul McCartney speaking out decades after the assassination of John Lennon.

PAUL MCCARTNEY: One of my best friends was killed in gun violence right around here. So it’s important to me.

SANDERS: But some of the student activists have become victims of misinformation. This image of Parkland survivor Emma Gonzalez ripping up the Constitution going viral, but the picture was photo-shopped. She was actually ripping up a gun range target. And for those gathered this weekend, emotions ran high.

PROTESTERS: Never again! Never again! Never again!

SANDERS: With Gonzalez standing through an extended and powerful moment of silence, the time that it took the gunman to kill 17 on her campus.

EMMA GONZALES: Fight for your lives before it’s someone else’s job. [Cheers]

SANDERS: If every graduating senior in this nation were to register to vote, that would be 3.6 million new voters. Something the student leaders here say they recognize will be their focus so they have power at the ballot box. Savannah?

GUTHRIE: Kerry Sanders, thank you.

Here is a full transcript of the March 26 report on ABC’s GMA:

7:14 AM ET

ROBIN ROBERTS: We’re gonna move on now to those huge March for our Lives rallies all across the country and world over the weekend. Hundreds of thousands taking to the streets, calling for action to stop gun violence. The biggest rally there in D.C., where 11-year-old Naomi Wadler made a powerful speech about African-American women who are victims of gun violence, but their stories are not told. She had challenging words for lawmakers.

NAOMI WADLER: We know life isn’t equal for everyone. And we know what is right and wrong. [Cheers and applause] We also know that we stand in the shadow of the Capitol. And we know that we have seven short years until we, too, have the right to vote. [Cheers and applause]

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: Thousands Turn Out to “March for Our Lives”; Protesters Call for Action to Stop Gun Violence]   

ROBERTS: Just one of the many powerful speeches over the weekend. Our Senior Congressional Mary Bruce, she’s here in the studio with us for more on the movement. Good morning, Mary.

MARY BRUCE: Good morning, Robin. Well, in Washington and around the world we saw hundreds of thousands of protesters demand gun control. Survivors making passionate pleas and young activists sending a clear warning to politicians: Beware, the voters are coming.

Now, of course, what comes next is up to Congress. And right now, Republican leaders have little to no appetite to act on guns. Now, they have taken steps to shore up existing background checks, but it is highly unlikely we will see them take up any kind of sweeping new gun legislation. Florida Senator Marco Rubio, for instance, says he respects the views of the protesters, but that, quote, “Many other Americans do not support a gun ban.” And for his part, the President, this weekend, remained silent on this issue.

ROBERTS: So the students and many are looking toward the midterm elections. Will we see a real impact come November?

BRUCE: Yeah, Robin, there’s no question that this could be a really major issue in these elections. Which is something that we haven’t seen in decades and is likely to put many Republicans on defense. But one thing is very clear. These young people are motivated, they’re registering people to vote, they’re going to keep the issue of gun control front and center.

ROBERTS: That is very, very clear. It’s great to have you here in the studio.

BRUCE: Thank you, good to be here.

ROBERTS: Thank you.

MICHAEL STRAHAN: They’re marching for change.

ROBERTS: Yes, they are.

Here is a full transcript of the March 26 report on CBS This Morning:

7:16 AM ET

GAYLE KING: The Florida students behind the Never Again movement hope to build on the momentum created by their March for Our Lives protest over the weekend. Hundreds of thousands of people gathered Saturday in Washington and around the world to demonstrate against gun violence. Adriana Diaz has been following the Stoneman Douglas students. She’s on Capitol Hill now with the latest on their story. Adriana, good morning.

ADRIANA DIAZ: Good morning. The Parkland students say their march here in Washington was just the beginning. And now they want to turn their voices into votes. At marches nationwide this weekend, nearly 5,000 people were registered to vote, many of them millennials.

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: Marching Forward; Parkland Students Vow to Keep Gun Control Fight Growing]

DAVID HOGG: Who here is going to vote in the 2018 election? [Cheers]

DIAZ: An ocean of activists delivered their demands at top volume.

CHILDREN [MARCH FOR OUR LIVES]: Hey, hey, ho, ho, the NRA has got to go!

NATALIE PAVLUK [PROTESTER]: We’re just sick and tired of waking up every day scared to go to school.

DIAZ: The crowd was silenced for six minutes by Marjorie Stoneman Douglas student Emma Gonzalez.

EMMA GONZALES: In a little over six minutes, 17 of our friends were taken from us.

DIAZ: She and other core organizers from Parkland appeared on Face the Nation on Sunday.

GONZALES: We’re going to be revving up for the election. This is not the end. This was just the beginning.

DIAZ: The group is already working on their next steps, including call for town halls nationwide on April 7th, a second national walkout on April 20th, and a voter registration campaign to register teens before November’s midterm election.

But not all students feel included in the movement. Parkland student Kyle Kashuv.

KYLE KASHUV: I agree with them completely that this cannot happen ever again, but I differ with them on what policy needs to be made.

DIAZ: A host on NRATV also criticized the students, calling them hypocrites.

COLION NOIR: They hate machines that cause death except hold on, no, you ain’t never going to take their cars away.

DIAZ: But Senator Tim Kaine said Congress is already building on the work of the movement.

SEN. TIM KAINE [D-VA]: But the activism of these young people is actually changing the equation. Just the two things that we put into the budget bill the other night couldn’t have been done had these youngsters not advocated for them.

DIAZ: The spending bill passed this week does include minor improvements to background checks.

Now, the students held their march in the shadow of the Capitol, but with Congress in recess, lawmakers weren’t there. Still, this week, state lawmakers in New Jersey and Vermont will vote on tougher gun laws. Anthony?

ANTHONY MASON: Adriana Diaz. Thanks, Adriana.

NB Daily Campaigns & Elections 2018 Congressional Parkland School Shooting Guns March for Our Lives ABC Good Morning America CBS CBS This Morning NBC Today Video Mary Bruce Kerry Sanders Adriana Diaz

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