NBC, CBS: Trump ‘Shattered Bipartisan’ Moment, ‘Stark Contrast’ to Clinton

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The CBS and NBC evening newscasts on Thursday complained about Donald Trump’s reaction to his impeachment acquittal. CBS called it a “stark contrast” to the allegedly dignified response by Bill Clinton. NBC fretted that the President “shattered the bipartisan tradition” of the National Prayer Breakfast. (Forgetting that Obama mixed politics too.) 

On the CBS Evening News, White House correspondent Ben Tracy fretted, “The President was not contrite. He did not apologize, except to his family.” He compared, “The hour-long, largely unscripted performance was a stark contrast to Bill Clinton's less-than-two-minute-long speech after his acquittal in 1999.” 

 

 

The reporter then played video of Clinton from 1999: “I want to say, again, to the American people how profoundly sorry I am.” Tracy chided, “Today was about presidential payback, aimed at Mr. Trump’s political opponents.” 

Over on the NBC Nightly News, Peter Alexander worried about the National Prayer Breakfast and the “shattering” of traditions: 

 

 

ALEXANDER: It wasn't the first time today the President attacked the only Republican who joined Democrats voting to remove him. Earlier, shattering the bipartisan tradition of the national prayer breakfast with swipes at both Romney and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. 

TRUMP:  I don't like people who use their faith as justification for doing what they know is wrong nor do I like people who say "I pray for you" when they know that that's not so. 

Of course, as NBCNews.com remembered in February of 2016, Obama used the breakfast for partisan ends. The February 4, 2016 headline read: “Obama Mixes Piety and Politics at National Prayer Breakfast.” Ron Allen explained: 

It was not difficult not to hear the undertones in the background.

The president echoed the administration’s persistent criticism of Republican candidates running for office, that they are playing on the nation’s fears to become their party’s nominee.

"Fear can lead us to lash out against those who are different or lead us to try to get some sinister 'other' under control," Obama said.

Transcripts are below. Click “expand” to read more: 

CBS Evening News
2/6/20
6:34:24 to

NORAH O’DONNELL: President Trump took a victory lap just one day aft his acquittal by the Senate, holding up headlines from newspapers whose subscriptions he said he would cancel and mixing shout-outs to supporters and put downs to his enemies. Ben Tracy reports tonight from the White House 

BEN TRACY: President Trump entered the East Room filled with his supporters and claimed victory, but also painted himself as a victim. 

DONALD TRUMP: We went through hell unfairly, did nothing wrong. 

TRACY: He then aired three years' worth of grievances. 

TRUMP: It was dirty cops. It was leakers and liars. Russia, Russia, Russia. It was all bull[bleeped]. 

TRACY: The President was not contrite. He did not apologize, except to his family.  

TRUMP: For having them have to go ro a phony, rotten deal by some very evil and sick people. 

TRACY: The hour-long, largely unscripted performance was a stark contrast to Bill Clinton's less-than-two-minute-long speech after his acquittal in 1999. 

BILL CLINTON: I want to say, again, to the American people how profoundly sorry I am. 

TRACY: Today was about presidential payback, aimed at Mr. Trump’s political opponents. 

TRUMP: Adam Schiff is a vicious, horrible person. Nancy Pelosi is a horrible person. 

TRACY: On the other end of Pennsylvania Avenue, the Speaker returned the favor.  

HOUSE SPEAKER NANCY PELOSI: He's impeached forever, no matter what he says or whatever headlines he wants to carry around. 

TRACY: President Trump is also not hiding his contempt for Mitt Romney, the only Republican Senator who voted to convict. 

MITT ROMNEY: My faith is at the heart of who I am. 

TRACY: This morning, President Trump questioned that at the national prayer breakfast. 

TRUMP: I don like people who use their faith as justification for doing what they know is wrong. 

TRACY: In his speech today, President Trump also railed against the investigations into his 2016 campaign. Attorney General Bill Barr was here at the White House for that speech. He now says any investigations into the 2020 candidates have to be approved by him. Norah? 

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NBC Nightly News
2/6/2020
7:05

PETER ALEXANDER: It wasn't the first time today the President attacked the only Republican who joined Democrats voting to remove him. Earlier, shattering the bipartisan tradition of the national prayer breakfast with swipes at both Romney and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. 

DONALD TRUMP:  I don't like people who use their faith as justification for doing what they know is wrong nor do I like people who say "I pray for you" when they know that that's not so. 

NB Daily Trump Impeachment CBS 60 Minutes NBC NBC Nightly News Video Ben Tracy Peter Alexander Donald Trump
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