CBS Touts Dems Beating Back GOP, ABC Fears ‘Moderate’ Dems

Listen to the Article!

There were two distinct angles of impeachment being covered by ABC’s World News Tonight and the CBS Evening News on Thursday. While the later was boasting about how “Democrats have beaten back repeated Republican attempts” to oppose the Articles of Impeachment against President Trump, the former was worried about the “moderate Democrats” in swing districts who might vote against their party.

“As we come on the air tonight, the House of Representatives is moving toward impeaching a president for only the third time in U.S. history,” hyped CBS anchor Norah O’Donnell. “It has been a day of passionate debate in the Judiciary Committee, and Democrats have beaten back repeated Republican attempts to throw out those articles of impeachment.”

Speaking from outside the hearing room (as the debate continued to drag on), CBS congressional correspondent Nancy Cordes huffed that “Republicans are trying to change these articles of impeachment or strip them out altogether, but the two sides could not be further apart.”

“As the party in power, Democrats blocked every effort today to pare down their charges,” she added during that video portion of the report. A short time later, she suggested the battle between both sides, “highlights the almost surreal divide over basic facts.” Of course, the Republicans were in the wrong according to the narrative.

To her credit, Cordes did press Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) on why no bribery charges were included in the Articles when Democrats insisted that was Trump’s alleged crime:

 

 

CORDES: But Madam speaker, you yourself accused him of bribery. Why did you decide not to make bribery one of the articles of impeachment?

PELOSI: I myself am not a lawyer. Sometimes I act like one. This is a decision that was recommended by our working together with our committee chairs, our attorneys, and the rest. So the articles are what they are. They're very powerful.

Cordes briefly noted that “there will be a few Democratic defections when this is voted on by the entire House next week.

Meanwhile, ABC anchor David Muir and senior congressional correspondent Mary Bruce seemed to really worry about those defections. “Tonight, Republicans are united in the House against impeachment. But some Democrats, we've learned, are wavering,” Muir announced at the top of the show.

Bruce questioned New Jersey Congressman Josh Gottheimer on his undecided position, while bemoaning how “several moderate Democrats in swing districts are skittish. Some opposed. Others on the fence.” “Because I made a commitment to my district from the moment that this began that I'm going to focus on all the facts,” he explained.

Of course, though, the fear of those Democrats wasn't about them ending the impeachment push in the House. Democrats have more than enough votes to send the Articles of Impeachment to the Senate for trial. The fear was that it would prove there was bi-partisan opposition to impeachment. And the media can’t have that.

The transcripts are below, click "expand" to read:

ABC’s World News Tonight
December 12, 2019
6:32:09 p.m. Eastern

DAVID MUIR: And we begin tonight with the fiery last stand in the House Judiciary Committee before the first official vote on impeaching President Trump. The House Judiciary Committee in a marathon debate on the two articles brought against the President. Their vote tonight. A partisan divide over the charges, abuse of power and obstruction of Congress. Democrats claiming the President violated his oath of office. Republicans say there is no crime. Tonight, Republicans are united in the House against impeachment. But some Democrats, we've learned, are wavering. ABC's Mary Bruce leads us off tonight from the hill.

[Cuts to video]

MARY BRUCE: After months of investigations and weeks of hearings, tonight on Capitol Hill, a marathon final push.

(…)

BRUCE: Democrats argue President Trump abused his office to gain an advantage in the 2020 election and they say he'll do it again.

(…)

BRUCE: Republicans insist Democrats are putting politics above principle.

(…)

BRUCE: Tonight's vote in the Judiciary Committee, the last legislative hurdle before the House votes to impeach. Republicans with a warning.

(…)

BRUCE: And several moderate Democrats in swing districts are skittish. Some opposed. Others on the fence.

Can you explain your current thinking? Why undecided right now?

REP. JOSH GOTTHEIMER (D-NJ): Because I made a commitment to my district from the moment that this began that I'm going to focus on all the facts.

BRUCE: Today, we asked Speaker Pelosi.

What is your message to those moderate Democrats who are undecided and who are concerned that a vote for impeachment could backfire on them politically?

SPEAKER NANCY PELOSI (D-CA): I have no message to them. [Transition] People have to come to their own conclusions.

(…)

 

CBS Evening News
December 12, 2019
6:31:55 p.m. Eastern

NORAH O’DONNELL: As we come on the air tonight, the House of Representatives is moving toward impeaching a president for only the third time in U.S. history. It has been a day of passionate debate in the Judiciary Committee, and Democrats have beaten back repeated Republican attempts to throw out those articles of impeachment. They have been at it for hours, and it has been a battle every inch of the way. Nancy Cordes leads off our coverage tonight as she is outside the hearing room. Nancy, what's the latest?

NANCY CORDES: Norah, we are more than nine hours in, and this debate is still raging. Republicans are trying to change these articles of impeachment or strip them out altogether, but the two sides could not be further apart.

[Cuts to video]

(…)

CORDES: As the party in power, Democrats blocked every effort today to pare down their charges.

REP. DOUG COLLINS (R-GA): This is a travesty and sham from day one.

REP. TED DEUTCH (D-FL): No president has ever, ever, ever obstructed Congress in the manner that we have seen from President Trump.

CORDES: This fight over two articles of impeachment--

(…)

CORDES: -- highlights the almost surreal divide over basic facts.

(…)

CORDES: President Trump is accused of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress. He calls it "Impeachment-lite."

SPEAKER NANCY PELOSI (D-CA): The President is wrong.

CORDES: But Madam speaker, you yourself accused him of bribery. Why did you decide not to make bribery one of the articles of impeachment?

PELOSI: I myself am not a lawyer. Sometimes I act like one. This is a decision that was recommended by our working together with our committee chairs, our attorneys, and the rest. So the articles are what they are. They're very powerful.

[Cuts back to live]

CORDES: Speaker Pelosi said today that on an issue this momentous, she is not pushing her members to vote one way or the other, and we do expect, Norah, that there will be a few Democratic defections when this is voted on by the entire House next week.

(...)

NB Daily Congress Events Trump Impeachment Political Groups Conservatives & Republicans Liberals & Democrats Broadcast Television ABC World News Tonight CBS CBS Evening News Video Mary Bruce Norah O'Donnell Nancy Cordes David Muir Donald Trump

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