While liberal journalists are pooh-poohing in advance any sort of success Donald Trump may have with his summit with North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un, that wasn’t the case back in 1994 when Bill Clinton struck a that would have supposedly resolved the nuclear threat from North Korea.



Liberal actor Alec Baldwin is very impressed with himself, touting his Donald Trump impersonation as comparable to Jonas Salk “curing polio.” CBS Sunday Morning journalist Rita Braver on April 2 stood aside as heaped praise on his own Saturday Night Live appearances. After wondering if Trump has “gotten mostly positive responses,” Baldwin cheered, “60 to 75 percent of the people I encounter treat me like I was Jonas Salk and I cured polio.” 



Daniel Halper at the New York Post reported on the close ties between the Democrats and CBS News as we near the vice presidential debate on October 4, moderated by CBS correspondent Elaine Quijano:

Hillary Clinton’s running mate, Sen. Tim Kaine, is being prepped for the vice presidential debate by Bob Barnett, the husband of CBS correspondent Rita Braver — just as another CBS correspondent and anchor prepares to moderate the high-stakes debate in Farmville, Virginia.



Rita Braver badgered former Defense Secretary Robert Gates on the January 12, 2013 edition of CBS's Sunday Morning over his new memoir which, in her words, "has created such turmoil in Washington." Braver even used Gates's own words against him: "In your book, you say that one of your favorite adages is, never miss a good chance to shut up. And I wonder if you think, maybe, you violated your own advice here."

The correspondent's hardball treatment of the former Obama cabinet official contrasts with her kid glove treatment of Attorney General Eric Holder during a September 12, 2010 interview for the morning show: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]



ABC, CBS, and NBC ballyhooed former Defense Secretary Robert Gates's attacks on President Obama and other high government officials on their Tuesday evening and Wednesday morning newscasts. NBC's Brian Williams and CBS's Norah O'Donnell also trumpeted the former Cabinet official's "devastating critique" of the President in his upcoming memoir. All three networks also played up Gates's self-identification as a Republican.

NBC's Today and CBS This Morning brought on former Obama administration officials on Wednesday morning. Both guests did their best to counter their former colleague. Matt Lauer touted David Axelrod's "important perspective" on the issue, and asked, "Did you get a sense that he was a guy who...was disgruntled in any way?" The CBS morning show turned to former chief of staff Bill Daley, who slammed Gates for going public: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]



One day before Election Day, the MRC has a fresh new edition of Notable Quotables posted over at MRC.org. Topics this week include: the liberal media’s pre-election meltdown, with MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann frothing that the election of “unqualified, unstable” Tea Party Republicans “would destroy America from within,” and Newsweek’s Jonathan Alter engaging in open electioneering: “The GOP’s agenda has to be stopped.”

To read it online, posted with five videos with matching MP3 audio, plus a sixth quote with a matching audio clip, go to www.MRC.org.

For NewsBuster’s readers, here are some of the choicer quotes from the last couple of weeks, reflecting liberals’ increasing desperation as the election clock ticks down:



On CBS's Sunday Morning, correspondent Rita Braver conducted a fawning interview with Nancy Pelosi, portraying the widely unpopular Speaker of the House as a strong leader taking on her opponents: "Nancy Pelosi is considered one of the most effective speakers in congressional history....Believe it or not, Republicans are out to fire Pelosi and Madam Speaker is firing back."

Braver began the segment by declaring: "Speaker Nancy Pelosi is all business. Whether it's on her morning walk along the Potomac....Or showing off the private balcony outside her Capitol office." She then lobbed this softball to the "all business" Speaker: "Do you ever let yourself relax and just do nothing? Loaf a little?" Pelosi replied: "I think I may take that up, but not until after the election."



In a puff piece on Attorney General Eric Holder on CBS's Sunday Morning, correspondent Rita Braver praised his professionalism: "...ignoring political pressure is Holder's constant message as he talks to Justice Department lawyers....Though he was a key advisor to the Obama campaign and considers the President a friend, Holder says he now keeps it purely professional." [Audio available here]

Throughout the interview, Braver portrayed Holder as lacking any political agenda: "And when he took office last February, he got a hero's welcome. It was in part, he believes, a reaction to cronyism and questionable policies advocated in the Bush-era Justice Department." As Braver mentioned Bush "cronyism," a photo of former Attorney General Alberto Gonzales appeared on screen. Holder proclaimed: "Waterboarding, things like that, from my perspective, inconsistent with the great traditions of this department."

Braver began with some gentle criticism of Holder: "And with controversies over everything –  from his pushing to quickly close the U.S. prison at Guantanamo to his very public condemnation of the new Arizona law that cracks down on undocumented immigrants – even some Holder fans are saying, 'he's honest, he's smart but sometimes he can be a little tone deaf about how things play out in public.'" That gave Holder the opportunity to declare: "I don't have the same latitude that other politicians might have to put my finger up to the wind and figure out what's going to be popular....So it's not tone deafness. It's a commitment to justice and a commitment to the law." Braver then touted Holder "ignoring political pressure."


Thursday night, as my colleague Brent Baker noted, ABC and NBC fretted that Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor might not adhere to a strict liberal orthodoxy on abortion. NBC reporter Pete Williams said Sotomayor’s views on abortion were a “mystery,” while ABC’s Jan Crawford Greenburg declared “both sides in the contentious debate want to know more.”

On Wednesday’s CBS Evening News, correspondent Wyatt Andrews sounded the same alarm: “Pro-abortion rights groups worried aloud today that the President — who promised an abortion rights nominee — never asked Sotomayor, who is Catholic, where she stands.”

On Thursday’s Today, co-host Matt Lauer opened the show by demanding to know “Where does she stand? Liberal activists voicing concerns over Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor and her stance on abortion. This morning, they’re demanding to know if she’s pro-choice or pro-life — and why President Obama never asked.”

But this isn’t the first time the networks have channeled the worries of liberal pro-abortion groups about a Democratic President’s Supreme Court nominee.


Many liberal media outlets have reported the Kennedy Center birthday party Sunday night for Sen. Ted Kennedy. Few have mentioned the media turnout. Al Hunt of Bloomberg News, the former Executive Washington Editor of the Wall Street Journal, joined Caroline Kennedy in awarding Sen. Kennedy the Kennedy Library’s "Profile in Courage" Award. Frank Mankiewicz, the former president of National Public Radio and Robert F.



Charles Osgood, CBS CBS’s Sunday Morning celebrated the 30th anniversary of its first broadcast in 1979 with host Charles Osgood citing CBS/New York Times poll numbers to demonstrate how American attitudes have changed over the past 30 years: "The majority of us now think homosexual relations between adults aren't wrong. That's a reversal from 30 years ago. As for sexual relations before marriage, the minority who disapprove is growing smaller. More people now support the legalization of marijuana than did 30 years ago. But still short of a majority. Views on abortion have hardly changed at all."

In addition to cultural issues, Osgood also explained how Americans are now ready for socialized medicine: "On the matter of health insurance, nearly half of all Americans now want the government to provide it for all problems. That's up from just over a quarter of us in 1979." Osgood also claimed: "Just one American in eight thinks the nation is more powerful today than it was ten years ago. In 1979, it was one in five." Apparently Americans were more optimistic about American power at the end of the Jimmy Carter era than at the end of the Bush era.

At the top of the show, correspondent Rita Braver did a similar look back at the last 30 years: "Three decades of change in our culture. Our communications, our politics." At that moment, a video clip of a gay marriage ceremony appeared on screen. After describing the end of apartheid in South Africa, Braver declared: "And the social order changed in this country, too." Braver spoke with Harvard history and economics professor Niall Ferguson and asked: "It does seem that white men are no longer calling all the shots." Ferguson replied: "Well, you're asking a white man if America-" Braver interrupted: " I know that, I'm asking you to fess up."



New York Times media reporter Jacques Steinberg picked up criticism of CBS reporter Rita Braver’s Sunday Morning interview on October 7 with vice presidential wife Lynne Cheney and her continuous conflict of interest with super-lawyer husband Bob Barnett in Thursday’s newspaper. But Steinberg allowed Braver to suggest something untrue: that she’s "stayed away" from Clinton interviews after her husband’s legal work for the Clintons in the White House years:

From September 1993 to August 1997, for example, Ms. Braver covered the Clinton White House; Mr. Barnett recused himself from any legal work related to the Clintons. Since then, Ms. Braver said yesterday, she had "sort of stayed away from the Clintons" in her coverage.

In fact, Rita Braver interviewed Hillary Clinton on November 30, 2003, a few months after her Barnett-negotiated memoir hit the bookstores. Here’s where the Steinberg story gets interesting: