| Screencap of from April 2, 2009"Iowa Gives Gay Marriage a Thumbs Up," trumpets the front page teaser headline on But, the subhead explains, it was "Iowa's Supreme Court" not the people via their legislature or direct referendum that opened the door to same-sex marriage by finding the state's ban on the ceremony "violates [the state] Constitution."

The smart folks soberly support Barack Obama, while the ridiculous-looking rednecks love Sarah Palin. That's the subtext of the New York Times coverage on Wednesday. Jennifer Steinhauer was watching the second presidential debate with Obama fans at a Mexican restaurant in Des Moines, "Where He First Got Going, Cheering Obama On."

Debate watchers at Dos Rios -- the sort of crowd that can cite chapter and verse of Medicaid waivers without notes -- watched intensely, taking their eyes off the television only to grab a Corona.

Strangely, one of the self-evident geniuses in attendance thinks Barack Obama wants universal health care, despite the Times' desperate insistence that that's just one of the McCain campaign's many lies:

Health care was clearly a big issue in this crowd, and Mr. Obama's statement that health care was a "right" got a big round, too. "I like the fact that he is taking steps toward universal health care," said Mr. Matson, an osteopath.

In contrast, a Republican rally in Florida featuring Sarah Palin is painted in threatening terms by the Times. In her Wednesday story, "Palin Plays to Conservative Base in Florida Rallies," Julie Bosman seems perturbed at the sight of conservative Republicans in their natural element.

Now that whiter-than-Wonder-bread Iowa has punched Barack Obama a first-class ticket to New Hampshire, can the mainstream media, particularly the New York Times, shut up about whether America is ready for a black president? That's what Michelle Malkin rhetorically asked on her blog before giving readers the answer.

Sure they will. Instead, they'll whine about how white Iowa is hardly reflective of the nation as a large. Gotta give Hillary a fightin' chance, I guess:

Well, it looks like the answer is no. No, the MSM won’t stop yammering about un-diverse white voters. Here’s the NYTimes editorial this morning, right on cue as I predicted, clamoring for an end to the Iowa caucuses and New Hampshire primary by zeroing in on its lack of, you guessed it, racial diversity:

The Federation for American Immigration Reform, or FAIR, issued a press release announcing that their cost study on immigration will be released tomorrow during a news conference at Iowa's 2007 Talk Radio Row.  

FAIR's press release states that “previous state and private studies over-estimated tax receipts and under-estimated costs.”

Worst job in America this morning: Clinton campaign staffer assigned to inform Hillary of her treatment at the hands of ABC's "This Week" panel.

From moderator George Stephanopoulos to former Gore campaign manager Donna Brazile, to the husband-wife tandem of Jay Carney of Time and Claire Shipman of ABC, to conservative sage George Will, it was a decidedly downbeat take on Hillary's fortunes.

View video here.

Des Moines Register Editor Carolyn Washburn takes a shot at Republicans with an obviously false statement in her piece summarizing the recent Iowa debates which she moderated:

By and large, the Republicans say they can get us to smaller government and lower taxes with economic growth and government efficiency. They don't ask Americans to make terrible sacrifices. About half wanted to tackle global warming and about half chose not to talk about it. They want local control and choice in education.

Chose not to talk about it!?! Not only did one Republican ask to talk about it, as opposed to raising his hand, Washburn wouldn't let them talk about anything other than what she had pre-scripted in her mind. From the transcript: see rest of pertinent part below the fold. Everyone there that was permitted to talked about it until she changed the subject. She also defends inviting Keyes and not Kucinich using criteria that's been pretty much debunked.

"Don't quit your day job, boss."

Well, he didn't put it that way exactly, but the Des Moines Register's David Yepsen was not too impressed with editor Carolyn Washburn's job as moderator in the December 12 debate: - Media Research CenterFollowing up on Al Gore’s reception of the Nobel Peace Prize, Carolyn Washburn of the Des Moines Register asked the Republican candidates several questions on the issue of "global climate change" and related topics. At the beginning of the debate, Washburn stated "we won't talk a lot about issues like Iraq or immigration. They're important issues, no doubt, but Iowans say they know where the candidates are coming from on those." But Washburn gave no indication that Iowans actually wanted to hear more about the Republican candidates’ stance on climate change.

This is the political urban legend that just won't die.

Last week, I described Gail Collins' condescension to what she sees as the bumpkins of Middle America. The New York Times columnist is back at it again this morning, suggesting that illegal immigration is not so much a problem as an issue exploited by Republican candidates to stir the passions of gullible Republican rubes. And yes, to Collins' ear, "sanctuary city" has a nice ring.

The jumping-off point for Collins' [p.p.v.] Of Mitt, Monks, and Mowers is the criticism Mitt Romney has levelled at Rudy Giuliani for the latter's embrace of New York's status as a sanctuary city for illegal immigrants when he was Big Apple mayor. Note that Rudy has since toughened his stance, vowing to end illegal immigration.

In Collins' eyes, telling police and others to ignore the fact that people they encounter in the course of their duties are in the country illegally is "a perfectly rational position."

Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney (R) recently told an Illinois woman that while his grown sons have never served in the military, they are displaying their patriotism by campaigning heavily for their father's nomination for the presidency.

On Monday’s "Good Morning America," guest host George Stephanopoulos pressed 2008 Republican candidate Mitt Romney over whether he will "do more to address" the issue of his Mormon faith.

This is the same ABC program that has repeatedly raised questions about whether the former Massachusetts governor’s religion could damage his ‘08 chances. In June, reporter Dan Harris speculated on how "uncomfortable questions" about Mormonism could harm the campaign.

In contrast, GMA gushed over a CNN sponsored event in June where Democratic candidates discussed their faith. An onscreen graphic wondered, "Are evangelicals embracing Democrats? New party of God?" For that segment, co-host Robin Roberts marveled, "...Senator Obama out on the campaign trail has, has freely talked about his faith." She also played an extended clip of Hillary Clinton discussing the important role faith played in her life.