Throughout NBC Nightly News’s two-week-long propaganda project for the 2020 Democratic field ahead of the first debate, a couple of the candidates actually suggested some half decent and probably generally supported ideas: fighting drug addiction and ending the practice of regime change overseas. These ideas tend to transcend party. So much so that these were actually ideas that President Trump supported.
Back on June 19, NBC correspondent Harry Smith sat down with Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar to discuss her “Big Idea”. “Klobuchar wants $100 billion over ten years. In part for more beds and treatment centers. And early intervention for mental health disorders,” he reported. “She'll fund her plan with taxes on and lawsuits against opioid manufacturers.”
Smith also noted that “addiction and mental health, for her, are issues that hit home” because her father struggled to overcome his alcoholism. “He went to treatment and in his words, he was pursued by grace. That was his faith and that was the treatment. That was the community, his friends, his family surrounding him and saying you've got to and he did,” Klobuchar explained.
Fighting the opioid epidemic was also something President Trump had made a priority for his administration. According to a White House website, “In 2018, President Trump worked with Congress to pass the SUPPORT Act, the single largest legislative package addressing a single drug crisis in history.” That’s not to mention that the President had lost his brother to alcoholism, which was why he didn’t drink.
“Almost a year after declaring the opioid epidemic a public health emergency, President Donald Trump on Wednesday signed into law a sweeping legislative package that lawmakers and public health experts believe will help curb the growing crisis in the United States,” NBC reported at the time.
The other shared “Big Idea” was Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard’s pledge “to bring peace and prosperity to this country by ending these wasteful regime change wars.”
“Gabbard wants to end U.S. overseas effort at regime change. For instance, she opposes the U.S. arming of Syrian rebels. She wants to put more money toward health care, a green economy, and social programs by clawing back trillions of dollars from defense spending,” Smith touted on Saturday.
She didn’t want to arm the Syrian rebels, but when President Trump wanted to withdraw U.S. troops from Syria AND Afghanistan the liberal media threw their hands up in outrage. When Trump first made the Syria announcement over a year ago, NBC suggested it was his “mission accomplished” moment. And suggested, “military advisers [were] scrambling to prevent the President from ceding the battlefield to Russia and Iran”.
A month after Trump won the 2016 presidential election, Trump delivered a speech where he declared: “We will stop racing to topple foreign regimes”. And just last month, he said his administration was not looking for “regime change” in Iran.
According to NBC’s narrative, these were fantastic “Big Ideas” being put forward by the 2020 Democratic field. When in reality they were also a part of the current administration.
The transcripts are below, click "expand" to read:
NBC Nightly News
June 19, 2019
7:14:42 p.m. Eastern
LESTER HOLT: Just a week until the first Democratic debate here on NBC and tonight in our series My Big Idea, Senator Amy Klobuchar tells Harry Smith about an issue that hits close to home for her.
[Cuts to video]
HARRY SMITH: And what's your big idea?
SEN. AMY KLOBUCHAR: My big idea is that we need to really do something about treating mental health and fighting addiction.
SMITH: When Amy Klobuchar runs for office, she wins big. Elected to the U.S. Senate three times by margins of 20 points or more. She is both Minnesota nice and a former prosecutor.
KLOBUCHAR: I will focus on getting things done. That's what I've done my whole life.
SMITH: It was the first day of this year's Des Moines farmer's market when we caught up with Klobuchar at the downtown coffee shop, Java joes. Addiction and mental health for her are issues that hit home.
KLOBUCHAR: My dad struggled with alcoholism his whole life. He went to treatment and in his words, he was pursued by grace. That was his faith and that was the treatment. That was the community, his friends, his family surrounding him and saying you've got to and he did.
SMITH: Klobuchar wants $100 billion over ten years. In part for more beds and treatment centers. And early intervention for mental health disorders. She'll fund her plan with taxes on and lawsuits against opioid manufacturers.
KLOBUCHAR: We have the resources in this country. We do. And we have to take them from the pockets of the people that have been profiting on the addiction and the help people get off these drugs.
SMITH: Fighting addiction, treating mental health. That's Amy Klobuchar's big idea. Harry Smith, NBC News, Des Moines.
NBC Nightly News
June 22, 2019
6:43:40 p.m. Eastern
JOSE DIAZ-BALART: They include Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii who has served in the House since 2013. What would she do differently if elected president? Harry Smith sat down with her for our series My Big Idea.
[Cuts to video]
HARRY SMITH: What's your big idea?
REP. TULSI GABBARD: My big idea is to bring peace and prosperity to this country by ending these wasteful regime change wars.
SMITH: In a crowded Democratic field Tulsi Gabbard stands out. The Hawaiian Congresswoman is Polynesian, born in American Samoa.
SMITH: And she's an Iraq War veteran. We met her on the Mall in Washington, D.C.
People may not know that you've been in the reserves for years, that you did two tours of duty in the Middle East. How did that shape your views vis-a-vis what you're talking about now?
GABBARD: Immensely. Every single day I was confronted with the high human cost of war.
SMITH: Gabbard wants to end U.S. overseas effort at regime change. For instance, she opposes the U.S. arming of Syrian rebels. She wants to put more money toward health care, a green economy, and social programs by clawing back trillions of dollars from defense spending.
So I'm just imagining the pushback from all the lobbyists and all the industries that are out there that benefit from the amount of money that we spend on defense. How are you going to tame that pushback?
GABBARD: The power of our democracy and the American people standing up and just saying we are sick and tired of the military industrial complex and self-serving politicians in Washington who have beaten these war drums for so long when they're not the ones paying the price, we are.
SMITH: Aloha, peace, and prosperity. That's Tulsi Gabbard's big idea. Harry Smith, NBC News, Washington.