On Tuesday night, CNN’s Oliver Darcy broke the news that the White House was sending a public letter to the media demanding they “ramp up the scrutiny” on the House Republicans for their Biden impeachment inquiry. The letter, scripted by spokesman Ian Sams, was jam-packed with all the usual garbage about “no evidence” of Biden doing anything wrong.
The PBS NewsHour response? Let’s put Ian Sams on taxpayer-funded TV to repeat all this garbage. Their headline, online? “White House responds to House Republicans’ impeachment inquiry against Biden.”
This wasn’t hostile. Co-anchor Amna Nawaz put the softball on the tee: “So you have heard the Republican justification for this inquiry. Despite a lack of public evidence and no floor vote, as Speaker McCarthy had promised, they say this allows committees to coordinate investigations, gives them greater standing to get documents that they are seeking, and they're using it as an investigative tool. So what does the White House say to that?”
Sams uncorked an 84-second answer chock full of “far right” and “no evidence” and most bizarrely, the old Clinton playbook of “we care about real issues like money for cancer research,” as if Democrats aren’t thriving and dunking on four Trump indictments right now.
Nawaz never specifically presented Sams with any of the evidence of Joe Biden’s involvement with Hunter’s clients – attending dinners and appearing on phone calls, just for starters – and her toughest question was just making Sams look at public opinion:
Biden aide Ian Sams: All you media outlets are hereby ordered to "ramp up scrutiny" on those lying House Republicans seeking to impeach Biden.— Tim Graham (@TimJGraham) September 14, 2023
State-Run PBS: How high do we jump? (Puts Sams on TV to spout his ridiculous "no evidence" spin.) pic.twitter.com/uPWqUQAtJo
NAWAZ: I do want to ask, though, because these concerns, the issues they're raising, there are Americans who have expressed some of these same concerns. I mean, you have seen these numbers. You have seen the polls when people are asked about the president's involvement in his son Hunter Biden's business dealings. A recent CNN poll showed some 61 percent of people said that then-Vice President Biden had — quote, unquote — "some involvement" in Hunter Biden's business dealings in Ukraine and China.
That's what they believed. And it's not just Republicans, right? It was 64 percent of independents who believe that. Among those independents, 61 percent also believed the actions were illegal; 37 percent of independents think the actions were unethical, but not illegal. So how do Americans go about getting those concerns addressed?
IAN SAMS: I think that things like what you just said really show that there's a real premium that's put on the truth. I think it's incumbent upon the independent media, it's incumbent upon us to explain to the public the truth. And the truth is that the president was never in business with his family and that these lies and false attacks that are coming from Republicans, with no evidence, no evidence to back them up, are in fact lies.
And the public needs to understand that. I think that there needs to be more scrutiny on these claims that are being made by House Republicans that are feeding this perception, which is driven by conservatives and Republicans. As you mentioned, in that poll, when Republicans in that poll, 90 percent of them express a belief in something, it raises questions about where they're getting their information from and what information they're getting...
Nawaz presented no pushback on the bizarre notion that “the president was never in business with his family” and it’s all “lies.” She changed the subject to whether the White House has reached out to moderate Republicans to inhibit the impeachment drive.