New York Senator Chuck Schumer was caught on tape Tuesday instructing his Democratic colleagues on how to spin the media with regard to “extreme” Republicans and their budget cuts. "I always use extreme...That is what the caucus instructed me to use,” Schumer blurted.
The liberal senator was apparently unaware his comments were being recorded (The remarks were made moments before a conference call with reporters began.) Tuesday’s nightly newscasts on NBC, ABC and CBS all skipped the story. On Wednesday, Good Morning America, Today and Early Show did the same.
The New York Times' Caucus blog explained:
After thanking his colleagues — Barbara Boxer of California, Benjamin L. Cardin of Maryland, Thomas R. Carper of Delaware and Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut — for doing the budget bidding for the Senate Democrats, who are facing off against the House Republicans over how to cut spending for the rest of the fiscal year, Mr. Schumer told them to portray John A. Boehner of Ohio, the speaker of the House, as painted into a box by the Tea Party, and to decry the spending cuts that he wants as extreme. “I always use the word extreme,” Mr. Schumer said. “That is what the caucus instructed me to use this week.”
Other journalists at the Times seemed to follow the proper wording. In a March 30 op-ed entitled "Why We're Fasting," food writer Mark Bittman portrayed the Republicans as willing to “starve” poor Americans “to death”:
"I stopped eating on Monday and joined around 4,000 other people in a fast to call attention to Congressional budget proposals that would make huge cuts in programs for the poor and hungry....These supposedly deficit-reducing cuts — they’d barely make a dent — will quite literally cause more people to starve to death, go to bed hungry or live more miserably than are doing so now. And: The bill would increase defense spending."
While ABC’s GMA found no time for Schumer and his planned spin for journalists, the ABC program did cover breast-feeding dolls and whether it’s “too much too soon.”
CBS’s Early Show featured a former girlfriend of the late JFK Jr. She informed viewers that kissing him was “magical.”
NBC’s Today covered a conversation between two babbling babies.
— Scott Whitlock is a news analyst for the Media Research Center. Click here to follow him on Twitter.