Media Meltdown: VA Dem Debacle Could Lead to ‘Conservative Republican’ Governor

As Virginia Democrats are imploding, the journalists on NBC, MSNBC, ABC and CBS have found the real disaster: It might result in a Republican governor. Scandals involving blackface, the KKK, and sexual assault have engulfed the Democratic Governor, Lieutenant Governor, and Attorney General.

On NBC’s Today, reporter Geoff Bennett fretted, “If the governor, lieutenant governor, and Attorney General all resign, or are forced out of office, the leadership of this state, the governorship, would go to the House Speaker. The House Speaker is a conservative Republican.” 

Being a conservative is apparently a huge red flag because Bennett repeatedly informed viewers of this fact. On MSNBC Live at 10:19 AM, he explained, “If the three of them were to resign, the governorship, the leadership of this state, would then be turned over, according to the line of succession, to the House Speaker who happens to be a conservative Republican.”

 

 

At 11:20 AM, he used nearly identical language to warn: “If the governor, lieutenant governor and Attorney General all resign, or are forced out of office, the leadership of this state, the governorship would go to the House Speaker. The House Speaker is a conservative Republican.” 

Over on ABC’s Good Morning America, reporter Tom Llamas dropped the “conservative” identifier, but still used similar language: “Now if all three men resign, the three men that are mired in scandals right now, then the Republican, who is the House Speaker, would be the next in line to take over the state.” 

On CBS This Morning, Ed O’Keefe echoed, “Democrats are worried that these scandals could spoil their chances of retaking legislature later this year. Now, after the top three scandalized leaders comes the Republican House Speaker.” 

(On Wednesday night, the networks ignored Lieutenant Governor Justin Fairfax allegedly saying of the woman who accused him of sexual assault: “F*** that b****.”) 

It sounds like Democrats aren’t the only people worried about this. Journalists are too. Back on MSNBC, Bennett reported live from Richmond, the state capital of Virginia. He summarized the problem: “The politicians in that building behind me, the Democratic ones anyway, they're really concerned this whole scandal could cost them in this upcoming election here in the state and then in the 2020 presidential election.” 

Partial transcripts are below. Click "expand" to read more. 

MSNBC Live
2/7/19
11:20am ET

GEOFF BENNETT: In a strange, roundabout way, the fact they're all now in different ways politically compromised — are all politically compromised —  that actually kind of insures their fate, at least for the short term. Because here's the deal, the way of line succession works here in Virginia, if the governor, lieutenant governor and Attorney General all resign, or are forced out of office, the leadership of this state, the governorship would go to the House Speaker. The House Speaker is a conservative Republican. So that is certainly complicating Democrats' calculations here as they figure out what to do, as they figure out their next steps. 

... 

BENNETT: The politicians in that building behind me, the Democratic ones anyway, they're really concerned this whole scandal could cost them in this upcoming election here in the state and then in the 2020 presidential election. Craig. 


MSNBC Live
2/7/19
10:19 AM

BENNETT: If the three of them were to resign, the governorship, the leadership of this state, would then be turned over, according to the line of succession, to the House Speaker who happens to be a conservative Republican. So the question that Democrats have to come up with is, do they want to keep their lock on power in this state or do they force these three men out of power? 

 

Today
2/7/19
7:05 AM

GEOFF BENNETT: If the Governor, Lieutenant Governor and Attorney General were all to resign, then the governorship would fall to the Virginia House Speaker who is a conservative Republican named Kirk Cox. He became House speaker, by the way, as a result of a close race that was determined by a name being pulled out of a bowl. 

 

CBS This Morning
2/7/19

7:06 AM

ED O’KEEFE: Democrats are worried that these scandals could spoil their chances of retaking legislature later this year. Now, after the top three scandalized leaders comes the Republican House Speaker. 

 

Good Morning America
2/7/19
7:04 AM

TOM LLAMAS: Now if all three men resign, the three men that are mired in scandals right now, then the Republican, who is the House Speaker, would be the next in line to take over the state. 

 

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