AP's Werner Channels CBS's Cordes in Covering New 'Zealous' House Members

November 9th, 2014 10:40 AM

Saturday morning, Erica Werner at the Associated Press, aka the Administratino's Press, channeled her inner Nancy Cordes to play "gotcha" with Republicans who won election to the House on Tuesday.

Werner's report essentially regurgitated Cordes's petulance in the CBS reporter's question directed at House Speaker John Boehner on Thursday. Cordes identified supposedly stupid or ill-advised things some of the incoming freshmen have said in the past, while of course not identifying a single similar thing a sitting Democratic Party congressman has said on the floor of the House or in House committee hearings during their tenures. Excerpts follow the jump (bolds and numbered tags are mine):


... Republicans also are welcoming some vocal new members on the right; some are replacing more moderate GOP lawmakers who retired. These new members could increase the ranks of tea party conservatives who have created persistent trouble for House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, and give him fresh headaches just when he and other GOP leaders are determined to show they can deliver after taking back the Senate.

In North Carolina, Mark Walker is a pastor who suggested using fighter jets to deal with illegal immigration. [1] He says his comments were taken out of context and that he was talking about a way to oppose drug cartels.

In Wisconsin, a longtime and low-key Republican, Tom Petri, is being replaced by firebrand state lawmaker Glenn Grothman, who referred to protesters at the state Capitol in Madison as "a bunch of slobs" and has opposed equal-pay legislation because "you could argue that money is more important for men." [2]

In Georgia, Jody Hice, a Baptist minister and conservative talk show host, has said that being gay is a lifestyle that "enslaves" people [3] and that he doesn't have a problem with a woman being in politics as long as she's "within the authority of her husband." [4]

Ryan Zinke, a former Navy SEAL elected in Montana, has gotten attention for calling Hillary Rodham Clinton "the antichrist."

"Do I really believe that she is the antichrist? That answer would be `no,'" Zinke said in an interview. [5] "But I do get a little emotional about Benghazi, and I like the rest of America want answers."

... Some Republicans argue the U.S. military held back assets that could have saved lives and that President Barack Obama and Clinton lied to the public about the nature of the attack. [5]

... The bigger numbers should give Boehner more room to maneuver as he tries to assemble the 218 votes needed to pass legislation. But it's clear that the most zealous wing of the party - sometimes called the "hell no caucus" - that repeatedly has forced Boehner to pull legislation such as a farm bill from the floor, toughen immigration policy or force a government shutdown over the president's health law will still be a force to reckon with. [6]

... "Yes, we have some new members who've made some statements, I'll give you that," he (Boehner) told reporters on Capitol Hill this past week. "But when you look at the vast majority of the new members that are coming in here, they're really solid members. ... We've done a very good job of recruiting good candidates, and we're going to have a very good crop of good members."

Notes —

[1] — If someone, in this case members of the Mexican drug cartels or perhaps even Mexican soldiers acting on their behalf, invades your country by crossing its border with weapons, killing American citizens while doing so, it is not unreasonable to suggest that crossing the border into Mexico with troops or air power may be an appropriate response. What's unreasonable and outrageous is that parts of the Southwest have at times been, and perhaps still are, "no go" zones because of cartel activity.

[2] — Ah yes, it's a sin against political correctness to identify any differences in gender tendencies. Unfortunately for the PC crowd, it is indisputable that there are "hardwired difference(s) between male and female brains." The hardwired differences would explain why we would expect men and women not to have identical attitudes towards money. That opens up the potential reasonableness of Petri's contention that "money is more important to men" — if for no other reason than the fact that they are more likely than women to spend their entire working lives earning it, therefore thinking about it, and therefore placing a higher priority on it. One could argue quite reasonably that society has naturally organized itself that way around the world and throughout otherwise highly diverse cultures because of those hardwired differences. Werner wants to treat Petri's assertion as an obviously wrong contention, with the implicit assumption that there can't possibly be any difference between the two gender outlooks. Her take is the one that is clearly unreasonable.

[3] — The Catholic Church and many other mainstream churches consider homosexual acts sins (Catechism 2357). They also consider sin a form of enslavement. Ergo, they believe that being gay and acting out homosexual impulses "enslaves" people. That may seem extreme to Erica Werner, but it's clearly not.

[4] — There are plenty of married couples who interpret the Bible as calling them to what Werner would likely describe as a "submissive" relationship, with the husband having "authority," and who freely and happily conduct their lives within that structure. Of course, the PC crowd conveniently forgets that husbands are called to "love your wives," and to use that "authority" in accordance with God's law. New Congresswoman Hice is entitled to her opinion. As a preacher, if she believes that others should follow that route, it's certainly her right to say so from the pulpit and in carrying out her daily ministry. None of this demonstrates that she would attempt to proactively enforce this viewpoint on others through federal legislation. Werner failed to demonstrate why we should care at all about what Hice has said.

[5] — It isn't just "some Republicans" arguing that the Obama administration, of which Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton were of course both menbers at the time, "lied to the public about the nature of the attack." It's the mainstream opinion among the American people. Additionally, more military and civilian security personnel than I can count, i.e., not just "some Republicans," have said that "the U.S. military held back assets that could have saved lives." They believe that U.S. ambassador Christopher Stevens and the other Americans who perished with him did not have to die.

[6] — Werner lifted the "hell no caucus" tage directly from Cordes's question to Boehner on Thursday. So let's remind Werner, Cordes, and all the others where the "hell no" actually originated.

It was October 8, 2010. The Speaker was ... House Minority Leader John Boehner:


Ladies and gentlemen, your government hasn’t been listening.

Your government is disrespecting you, your family, your job, your children.

Your government is out of control.

Do you have to accept it? Do you have to take it? (audience says "NO!")


You see, Erica, Nancy, and you other Beltway elitsts, we (the “you” Mr. Boehner was addressing) are sick and tired of a government which hasn’t been listening for almost six years now, has been disrespecting everything we hold dear, and remains out of control.

Mr. Boehner was telling us that "Hell no" we don't have to accept that, and "Hell no" we don't have to take it. That's still the case.

The so-called "hell no" caucus is simply doing what their constituents — who have clearly said "hell no" to, among other things, expanding government, shrinking freedoms, and impending fiscal bankuptcy, open borders — want. That's how the system is supposed to work, Erica, Nancy, et al.

Werner also obtained a tired quote from a Democratic congressmen who went through the "They're the crowd that shut down the government" schtick. The House passed several bills which would have kept the government running in September 2013. Harry Reid's Senate would not consider them. It is not arguable that Harry Reid, with Barack Obama's blessing, is the person who decided that shutting down the government would be a politically viable strategy, and who pulled to trigger to make it happen.

As I noted yesterday, Werner is one of two AP reporters who pretended that President Obama went to lunch with the majority and minority leaders of the House and Senate on Friday interested in "cooperation" with Republican leaders. Obama's threat that he will act unilaterlly if the lame-duck Congress, whose Senate is still run by Harry Reid, doesn't pass an immigration "reform" bill by the end of the year shows that he was only interested in capitulation, not cooperation.

As with yesterday's report, today's whining from Werner is a likely preview of the two years of incessant journalistic malpractice we're likely to see from the self-described "the essential global news netoork."

Cross-posted at BizzyBlog.com.