For much of Thursday, a number of CNN and MSNBC hosts predictably reacted to the quick enaction of new gun restrictions in New Zealand by lamenting the fact that U.S. political leaders are not so willing to restrict the rights of its citizens to own guns, and mostly had guests who bolstered their left-leaning views.
After initially ignoring the controversy surrounding Virginia Democratic Governor Ralph Northam suggesting it would be both legal and acceptable under a proposed new abortion law if a baby were delivered and then allowed to die outside the mother's body, CNN finally ran a few briefs on Thursday morning, and MSNBC ran one. But the reports provided cover for Northam, with CNN host Dave Briggs in particular suggesting conservatives might have misunderstood him even though the Democratic governor clearly stated that not resuscitating a newborn baby would be an allowed option.
If you were watching one of the Friday morning cable or broadcast networks, chances were you didn’t hear about news late Thursday into Friday that the North Koreans handed over what purported to be remains of U.S. soldiers who went Missing In Action (MIA) during the Korean War. A NewsBusters analysis found that 16 times more coverage was dedicated to former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen’s unverified allegation that then-candidate Trump knew in advance about the infamous June 9, 2016 Trump Tower meeting.
After the Associated Press published an article that misleadingly gave the impression that the U.S. military may be kicking out large numbers of non-citizens, several MSNBC hosts freaked out over the hyped news, using words like "startling," "shocking," and "yet another low." MSNBC contributor and Washington Post deputy editorial page editor Ruth Marcus even suggested that "you have to hate immigrants" to make such a move.
For this installment of if the parties were reversed, the Thursday evening and Friday morning broadcast network newscasts refused to cover possible 2020 presidential candidate and Democratic Senator Kamala Harris (Calif.) joking on The Ellen Show about killing President Trump, Vice President Pence, and Attorney General Jeff Sessions. The Fox News Channel’s Hannity naturally covered it, but the other mention of this sick joke was MSNBC’s First Look, which airs in the 5:00 a.m. Eastern hour prior to Morning Joe.
Wednesday’s Morning Joe devoted a significant portion of its broadcast to covering President Trump’s upcoming speech that will officially recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. In response to reports that the Palestinian Authority is reacting to this development by calling for potentially violent protests and a “day of anger,” MSNBC’s top liberal pundits knew precisely where the blame for any resultant violence should fall – Trump, of course.
The Big Three networks' morning newscasts on Tuesday all failed to cover the Associated Press's early Tuesday report that revealed the 72 mass graves inside current or former ISIS territory. Instead of spotlighting ISIS's mass murder, ABC's GMA aired a 50-second news brief on a unicyclist's stunt on top of a 840-foot tower in Romania. CBS This Morning set aside 43 seconds of air time to a race car in Bolivia jumping over a dog that wandered into the road. NBC's Today devoted 38 seconds to a Colorado teen soccer player's running flip over a goalie.
Joe Scarborough on Monday continued to spin for Barack Obama, this time defending the President’s war strategy in Afghanistan and placing blame on the American people. Citing a New York Times columnist, the Morning Joe host complained, "And as Frank Rich said, the President's best political ally on Afghanistan is apathy. Americans don't care that their sons and daughters are going off to fight and die for a war that really has no end game."
Co-host Mika Brzezinski agreed. She derided, "Maybe if most Americans actually cared beyond the ones that have to go and serve we would have different outcomes.”
While Scarborough reacted with some criticism, he was empathetic with the President because, “If Barack Obama takes the troops out and does what I'm saying he should do, Republicans will kill him. Every time a poppy is grown in Afghanistan, they will blame Barack Obama. Every time a woman is tortured in Afghanistan, they will blame Barack Obama. Every time anything goes wrong, they will blame Barack Obama."
MSNBC’s David Shuster on Friday slammed conservatives such as Rush Limbaugh and RNC Chairman Michael Steele as "un-American" and "extreme" for criticizing Barack Obama’s Nobel Peace Prize win. The liberal co-host of News Live applauded the President’s speech on the award and asserted, "...It makes the harsh comments from Michael Steele, from Rush Limbaugh, the rest, seem even more extreme and, as some would argue, un-American." (Audio available here.)
Arguing that Obama came across as humble for stating that he’s not worthy to be in the same category as some of the other nominees, Shuster told co-anchor Tamron Hall that the remarks "made some of the conservatives look silly." Hall herself found the President’s reaction to be "incredible" and unquestioningly cooed, "...The President started out his speech, or address this morning, saying that his daughter Malia walked in and said, ‘Dad, you won the Nobel Peace Prize. And, by the way, it is our dog's first birthday.’"
File this one under the "no duh" department. On tonight's Hardball, Chris Matthews attempted to outline his stance on illegal immigration but prefaced it by declaring: "I don’t want to be the conservative here. I’m not comfortable playing that role."
Matthews uttered what has to be the Understatement of the Week, during an exchange with Ron Reagan Jr. and former John McCain spokesman Todd Harris, on the June 12th edition of MSNBC's Hardball.
View video here.
MSNBC HOST CHRIS MATTHEWS: Last night in Columbia, South Carolina, the two GOP frontrunners showed profiles in courage: McCain opposing torture, Giuliani defending abortion rights. . . Here's Senator McCain on the issue of torture last night; I was very taken with these words . . . You know, I don't offer strong opinions all the time on this show [of course not], I usually bow to the guests. But I am so taken with that . . . I know he scored, Chuck [NBC political director Todd] no points last night but he scored one with me . . . Anybody's who's ever been in uniform is against torture, and it's the pencil necks, if you will, the armchair generals who always like wars a lot except when they or their family members might be in those wars.
The MRC has been following the media’s reaction to the death of terrorist mastermind Abu Musab al Zarqawi all day. Much of the coverage has been focused on downplaying the significance of the event. Now we have a new angle. MSNBC anchor Milissa Rehberger hosted First Look, the early morning coverage of Zarqawi’s death.