The Andrew Breitbart-hating media certainly got its comeuppance Monday when Congressman Anthony Weiner (D-N.Y.) finally admitted that he had indeed been sending lewd pictures to young women via his Twitter account.
Sensing that he was seated with one such press member, CNN's Howard Kurtz on Sunday's "Reliable Sources" told a mopey Dana Milbank of the Washington Post, "You're just annoyed because Breitbart, who doesn't like the liberal media, has actually gotten some credit on this story" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
To a liberal media member, politics means never having to say you were wrong.
On Tuesday's "The Ed Show," Salon's Joan Walsh said she looked "kind of stupid" for defending Congressman Anthony Weiner (D-N.Y.) last week, then went right on defending him (video follows with transcript and commentary):
The sounds of the slaps you hear are those of the DUers at the Democratic Underground and the Kossacks at the Daily Kos slapping themselves silly for ever believing Anthony Weiner's very obvious lies. The only thing that makes them angrier than their gullibility being publicly exposed is the fact that Weiner apologized to Andrew Breitbart. That really drove them over the edge and contributed greatly to their sudden disillusionment with the New York congressman.
To get a handle on the unbelievable extent of their gullibility, we need to take a short trip down memory lane to just over a week ago to May 29 when the DUers were completly buying into the assertion in the title of their thread, "Anthony Weiner: Hackers posted lewd photos on Twitter." A few choice tidbits of their outrage over the belief that it was Weiner who was hacked:
I knew those monsters would go after Weiner. They always attack the best of us. Psychopaths always attack your strengths. Grrrrr
They messed with the wrong person this time. Anthony Weiner is not going to be silent while they go after him. This could actually be a good thing.
On Tuesday's Early Show, CBS's Erica Hill pressed Andrew Breitbart over the Shirley Sherrod issue, highlighting how he "never apologized to her." Hill and reporter Joel Brown noted the "multi-million dollar defamation suit" Sherrod filed against Breitbart and turned to a journalist who touted how the blogger is "very defensive about his credibility and...realizes that he has these strikes against him."
Brown's report preceded the anchor's interview of the conservative at the bottom of the 7 am Eastern hour. The correspondent trumpeted how "right-wing commentator Andrew Breitbart has six political websites, whose goal is to quote, 'hold the mainstream media's feet to the fire.' He certainly got their attention when he posted this now-infamous picture of Congressman Weiner on BigGovernment.com seven days ago."
New York Times media reporters Jeremy Peters and Jennifer Preston recognized conservative journalist Andrew Breitbart (pictured below) for breaking the Weiner-gate scandal that resulted in a dramatic press conference Monday afternoon where both Brietbart and Rep. Weiner spoke. "Conservative Blogger, a Go-To Source for Political Scandal, Looks for Legitimacy" was printed in Tuesday's Metro section (Rep. Weiner represents parts of Brooklyn and Queens).
When Meagan Broussard asked one of her friends what she should do about an intimate online relationship she had been having with Representative Anthony D. Weiner, the friend, a Republican, told her to go to Andrew Breitbart.
Mr. Breitbart, a conservative blogger, has established his Web site, BigGovernment.com, as the place to go with tidbits of a scandal in the making. On Monday, he claimed a moral victory after Mr. Weiner admitted that he had indeed sent the suggestive photos posted earlier on his site. "I’m here for some vindication," Mr. Breitbart said as he took to the lectern at Mr. Weiner’s own news conference.
As NewsBusters' Lachlan Markay pointed out, the Weinergate scandal showcased a variety of liberal media conspiracy theories. One of the most prevalent theories focused on besmirching conservative blogger Andrew Breitbart, who broke the story wide open Monday with a series of posts on BigGovernment.com featuring lewd photos of Rep. Anthony Weiner.
"Look, Breitbart is a proven liar, okay?" bellowed MSNBC anchor Cenk Uygur on June 1. "He doctored the Shirley Sherrod tapes. He's done this over and over again. Why would anybody take this fool seriously?"
UPDATE: Check out reaction from some of the chief Weiner-defenders below the break.
The so-called Weinergate scandal provided a true spectacle of media bias and conspiracy theorizing. While there was certainly plenty of good reporting throughout, many opted to take Rep. Anthony Weiner's claims at face value and search for other culprits or scapegoats.
Others devised more malicious theories about why a lewd picture had appeared on the congressman's Twitter feed. It was Andrew Breitbart's attempt to gin up another bogus story, or a coordinated effort by conservatives to provide cover for Clarence Thomas. These wild theories actually gained quite a bit of traction among liberals online, and even a few mainstream personalities.
We know now, by Weiner's own admission, that they were all nonsense. So with the facts readily available, it's worth reviewing some of the dominant narratives that pervaded media coverage of the scandal.
In an interview with Andrew Breitbart on Tuesday's NBC Today, co-host Matt Lauer suggested the conservative blogger should not have broken news of the scandal involving Congressman Anthony Weiner: "Did you worry that – you know, as a conservative, you don't want government in people's bedrooms. And so did you stop and have a debate with yourself about that?"
Moments earlier, Breitbart had noted feeling some sympathy for Weiner during Monday's press conference: "I felt so unbelievably sad for this guy." Lauer responded by wondering why that sympathy didn't keep the BigGovernment.com creator from re-posting Weiner's racy tweet on the web site last week: "But if you're sad for the guy then, did you not consider that at some point you might be sad for him when you first posted that photo ten days ago?"
Old and new media clashed on CNN's "Reliable Sources" Sunday.
After CBS News Congressional correspondent Nancy Cordes blamed Andrew Breitbart for her network's slow response to the ongoing Weinergate scandal, Gawker staff writer Maureen O'Connor said, "I think even if that's the case, it was very quickly that you could have looked into this story and verified it for yourself" (video follows with trancript and commentary):
Both CNN's Anderson Cooper on Wednesday's AC360 and CBS's Nancy Cordes on Thursday's Early Show highlighted conservative blogger Andrew Breitbart's early part in spreading news of the lewd photo Tweeted from Rep. Andrew Weiner's Twitter account. Cooper played up Breitbart's supposedly "questionable credibility," while Cordes reported how "supporters of Weiner note that it was [the] right-wing blogger...who broke the story."
The CNN anchor raised Breitbart's involvement 15 minutes into the 10 pm Eastern hour as he introduced the second part of an interview of the New York Democrat conducted by his colleague Wolf Blitzer:
"Saturday Night Live's" Seth Meyers headlined Saturday's White House Correspondents' Association dinner, and somewhat surprisingly went after media outlets on both sides of the aisle.
Apart from jibes at Fox News, the New York Times, and NPR, Meyers said of MSNBC's event after party, "President Obama makes the Kool-Aid, and everyone there drinks it" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
If you're not familiar with GRITtv or Laura Flanders, you will be because her far-left, antagonistic, attack dog style is starting to become all the rage to liberal hosts especially on MSNBC.
On Friday, as part of the panel discussion on HBO's "Real Time," Flanders in her own aggressive style impolitely went after fellow guest conservative publisher Andrew Breitbart feeling the need to bring up last year's Shirley Sherrod affair after which she called him a con man (video follows with transcript and commentary):