Sunday night, National Geographic Channel played a two hour special on President Obama called “The Price of Hope.” What was the “price” of “hope” exactly? Apparently Obama not getting his way 100% of the time because of those evil Tea Party Republicans in Congress,(or at least that’s how the documentary spins it.) The entire documentary sets up the President as some kind of untainted Savior who struggled to achieve his dreams for a better America because “extremist” Republicans were too partisan to be reasonable.
President Obama’s farewell address wasn’t ominous enough, believes The Nation’s Walsh. “It didn’t quite rise to the present danger,” wrote Walsh late Tuesday night, not long after Obama left the stage in Chicago. “Generally, he directed his mild criticism at all of us, not at the white backlash that elected [Donald] Trump.” In fact, the speech “could have been delivered even if Hillary Clinton was the president-elect.” According to Walsh, as much as Obama “tried to change” America, it remains “inadequately changed,” which may explain why Hillary lost.
Fresh off her glowing column on Sunday polishing First Lady Michelle Obama’s apple, author and New York Times correspondent Jodi Kantor appeared on Monday’s CBS This Morning to similarly praise President Obama for being “a big believer in taking a kind of above the fray, unifying, nonpartisan tone.”
Like most observers, The Nation’s Walsh expected that the voters who backed Barack Obama in 2008 and 2012 would turn out for Hillary Clinton, whose presidency would safeguard Obama’s “political, social, and racial legacy.” Of course, countless expectations were dashed on November 8, when, as Walsh puts it, an “unexpected surge of white voters…took their country back from a black man [and] refused to hand it over to a liberal white woman.” In her piece, Walsh suggested that Obama hurt Hillary’s chances of winning pretty much by just being himself for eight years.
After news broke on Tuesday that former Texas Governor Rick Perry would be President-elect Donald Trump's choice to head the Energy Department, CNN anchors made sure to have fun reminding viewers of the infamous "oops moment" from October 2011 when Perry was unable to name during a debate the third department that he wished to eliminate if he were elected President -- which coincidentally was the Energy Department.
Considering that it's coming from the New York Times, reporter Sabrina Tavernise's account of what happened in Ohio to swing it from a close Obama win in 2012 to a near-blowout for Donald Trump in 2016 was reasonably well-done, but still had glaring flaws. Her story's human interest elements were strong, but the accompanying statistics provided were sparse, and really needed to be there to tell the full tale. Tavernise's biggest failures were first, not describing how historically large Trump's Buckeye State victory margin was, and second, neglecting to attribute a large portion of that margin to sharply lower overall turnout among Democrats. Those two elements enabled her to avoid entertaining the possibility that Ohio — but to be clear, not necessarily the rest of the nation, or even the Midwest — may have just experienced a potentially seismic electoral realignment.
On Wednesday’s The View two of the most liberal hosts, Whoopi Goldberg and Joy Behar, came up with their own completely original and unheard of reason as for why Donald Trump had so many supporters: Because a lot of Americans are racist. Whoopi made the point, to which Behar agreed, before making the claim that Trump supporters hated Hillary Clinton simply because she was a woman, as well. This kind of genius analysis from liberals isn’t, unfortunately, limited to the panelists at The View.
This is a volatile election year, to say the least. The two major-party candidates are far less than perfect, routinely commit gaffes (or perceived gaffes), and have been hurt by a variety of negative disclosures and actions. Two other challengers have gained a degree of attention and apparent support not seen since Ross Perot's presidential runs in the 1990s. Meanwhile, mistrust of the establishment press is at or near an all-time high, and several journalists have publicly decided that the idea of even trying (or pretending) to report in a fair and balanced manner is not appropriate this year.
Unlike a lot of his fellow liberals, Jonathan Chait doesn’t believe presidential-debate moderators should be on-camera fact-checkers, but Chait’s reason for opposing the idea is unambiguously anti-conservative. In an item posted a few hours prior to Monday night’s Clinton-Trump clash, Chait argued that the way Republicans dealt with Candy Crowley’s intervention in a 2012 Romney-Obama debate “suggests the party would never tolerate such a role by the media on an ongoing basis,” given that “the GOP exists within an epistemic bubble that creates its own reality and disregards the findings of mainstream experts in economics, science, and other fields…Conservatives created this alternate ecosystem precisely to insulate their side from scrutiny from journalists who were not working within the conservative movement. And the simple reality is that, if debates become forums for media to subject candidate claims to fact-checking by the standards of independent arbiters, Republicans will refuse to participate in them.”
With the first 2016 presidential debate approaching on Monday, a portion of Tuesday’s Hardball on MSNBC was dedicated to looking back at some iconic moments from past debates and host Chris Matthews used the time to express his sheer anger that still permeates four years later at Mitt Romney for his “terrible performance” in the first 2012 debate where he “walked in like he’s a better man” than President Obama.
Stephanie Cutter believes that Democratic Party presidential nominee Hillary Clinton really made a mistake in her Friday evening "basket of deplorables" statement about Republican nominee Donald Trump's supporters at a fundraiser in New York City when she limited the "basket" to "half" of them. On Sunday's Meet the Press on NBC, Cutter, the former 2012 Obama presidential campaign manager and short-lived cohost of CNN's failed attempt to revive Crossfire a couple of years ago, made it clear that she believes that far more than half, and perhaps all, of Trump's supporters belong in that "deplorables" basket containing people Mrs. Clinton described as "racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamophobic, you name it."