Since the 1980s, the well-worn liberal playbook is to claim that Republican appointees to the Supreme Court should be voted down as ideologues who are outside the judicial mainstream. The establishment media aids this tactic by often tagging GOP nominees as “conservative,” while ignoring — or even disputing — the liberal bent of Democratic nominees to the Court. True to form, ABC, CBS and NBC’s morning and evening broadcasts branded Judge Brett Kavanaugh a “conservative” a total of eleven times in the first 24 hours since his nomination by President Trump.
Amid CNN’s analysis of President Trump’s Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh on Monday night, their senior legal analyst, Jeffrey Toobin requested that the panel think about how Obama SCOTUS nominee Merrick Garland and Hillary Clinton must feel watching the announcement.
Now that Donald Trump seems ready to name another conservative to the Supreme Court, to replace retiring Justice Anthony Kennedy, the Times suddenly realizes the Court is “polarized” and politicized, and pleads for a court free from ideology. This after years of pushing to discover abortion, gay rights, and universal health care in the “terse, old” document. Chief Washington correspondent Carl Hulse lamented on Friday that “Political Polarization Takes Hold of the Supreme Court.” The text box: “A reputation for independence has faded, even before a new justice’s arrival.”
We are used to Matthew Dowd’s outrageous analogies and over-the-top rants against President Trump on Good Morning America, but today the ABC political analyst took to Twitter instead to share his absurd observations.
As two major Supreme Court decisions, on the travel ban and an abortion/free-speech question, were settled with 5-4 majorities, the New York Times devoted a front-page story to Trump’s selection of Supreme Court pick Neil Gorsuch, while anguishing over the Republican decision not to give then-President Obama’s nominee Merrick Garland a hearing in 2016, in “G.O.P. Tactics in 2016 Pay Off in Gorsuch, Who Proves Decisive Figure on Court.”
This is what having an awful, no good, very bad day looks like. MSNBC’s Hardball host Chris Matthews unleashed two separate tirades on Tuesday against the U.S. Supreme Court and decisions of theirs he doesn’t like in light of their decision to give President Trump “[t]he Good Housekeeping seal on his campaign to divide the country and approving his travel ban crudely aimed at Muslims.”
Appearing as a guest on Sunday's Fareed Zakaria GPS on CNN, former New York Times executive editor Jill Abramson blamed a Republican "rage machine" for the level of political polarization that currently exists, and complained about how congressional Republicans are conducting business. She also oddly claimed that Democrats were not partisan in their reaction to President Donald Trump's nomination of Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch -- even though Republicans had to change the filibuster rule to keep Democrats from blocking his confirmation to the Court.
On Friday's regular "Shields and Brooks" segment on PBS Newshour, New York Times columnist David Brooks -- the supposedly more right-leaning half of the pairing -- oddly seemed to wish for some sort of "apocalypse" to beset the Donald Trump administration as he theorized and predicted that some scandal or "grievous blow" to the White House might inspire more bipartisanship in the aftermath. After host Judy Woodruff was surprised by his prediction of an "apocalypse," he only walked back his bizarre choice of words slightly: "Well, I -- that word came out -- I should have stuck with 'acidity.' That would have been a better word."
In an act similar to that of a whining child, Senate Democrats attempted to block the President Trump’s Supreme Court nominee Judge Neil Gorsuch Thursday. Republicans, in turn, followed through on their promise to execute the so-called “nuclear option” to bring debate to a close and move the nomination forward. In response, ABC and NBC were up in arms that evening. “The Republican leader today emerged from the partisan battlefield with a thumbs up. The top Democrat, his head hung low in defeat,” bemoaned ABC’s Mary Bruce on World News Tonight.
In multiple appearances on CNN on Monday, CNN political commentator and Spectrum News political anchor Errol Louis fretted over the Republican effort to bar the filibuster of Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch. Louis called such a move "radical action" as he appeared on CNN's New Day, and, appearing later on CNN Newsroom, he worried that such an action would begin a precedent that would result in the Supreme Court "greatly denuded from what the Founders wanted," and becoming "just a branch of the Senate, in effect." Over the weekend on New Day Saturday, Louis was notably also still agitated over retired General Michael Flynn leading "lock her up" chants against Hillary Clinton during the presidential campaign as the CNN commentator declared that it was "one of the ugliest moments in politics I've ever seen in 30 years."
With the Senate’s Supreme Court confirmation vote for Judge Neil Gorsuch just days away and the possibly of Republicans nuking the filibuster looming, NBC’s Chuck Todd seemed as though he was in a near panic on Sunday’s Meet The Press. Besides his declarations of the GOP continuing the Senate’s decent down the “slippery slope” of removing the filibuster, Todd pestered Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell for the Senate to hold a vote for former President Barack Obama’s nominee, Judge Merrick Garland.
Thursday was the final day for the Senate Judiciary Committee to hear outside arguments for or against Supreme Court nominee Judge Neil Gorsuch. Despite his stellar qualifications, Senate Democrats vowed to throw a hissy-fit and filibuster the confirmation vote. The act is completely unprecedented and is clearly being done out of revenge. And even with that fact, the Big Three networks (ABC, CBS, and NBC) seemed to find little interest in the development and gave the story the bare minimum of a news brief.