As journalists rejoice over Republican defeats in New Jersey and Virginia, hyping them as a referendum on President Trump, we at the MRC dove into our archives to remind them that just 8 years ago they said the exact opposite when the exact same situation happened to President Obama. The comparison couldn’t get more apples-to-apples: in both 2009 and 2017, the governorships of Virginia and New Jersey were lost by the party that had just won the presidential election the year before.
After the first day of the trial of New Jersey Senator Bob Menendez on a dozen corruption charges, MSNBC's The Beat host Ari Melber expressed a dire perspective on Wednesday evening regarding the outcome of the proceedings: The evidence “looks overwhelming.” Melber, who also serves as the NBC News chief legal correspondent, stated that the Democratic official is facing charges ranging from bribery to promoting untrue conspiracy theories and lying about his relationship with Dr. Salomon Melgen, a wealthy ophthalmologist from Florida.
On Monday, CNN Politics's Chris Moody and Alexander Rosen promoted/paid tribute to President Obama's final State of the Union address by producing an online video in the style of movie director Wes Anderson. Moody narrated the video, which spotlighted a pro-ObamaCare moment from the President's 2015 speech to Congress, where Senator Marco Rubio and other Republicans refused to stand and applaud.
It was the best of coverage - it was the worst of coverage.
The soap opera that played out in Richmond these last weeks and ended with the convictions of former Gov. Bob McDonnell and his wife, Maureen, on multiple counts of fraud and conspiracy charges is a tragedy for them, their children and the voters of Virginia.
Less than 24-hours after former Governor Bob McDonnell (R-VA) was indicted on 14 charges including conspiracy and fraud, all three network morning shows immediately identified McDonnell as a Republican. While McDonnell’s potential crimes are serious, the media failed to uphold the same party ID standard when it involved a scandal plagued Democratic governor.
NBC led their January 22 coverage of the McDonnell scandal with Today host Savannah Guthrie introducing the segment by saying, “And now to that bombshell indictment of the former governor of Virginia, Bob McDonnell, a one-time rising star in the Republican Party.” ABC provided an on-screen graphic identifying McDonnell as a Republican and CBS This Morning’s Nancy Cordes said that “McDonnell was once considered a possible presidential contender for the GOP.”
On Thursday's PoliticsNation on MSNBC, host Al Sharpton touted the pro-abortion group NARAL's deceptive attacks on "crisis pregancy centers" in Virginia which try to encourage pregnant women not to have abortions, as NARAL accused these pro-life groups of "lying." Picking up on an article posted by the far left Think Progress, the MSNBC host gave NARAL President Ilyse Hogue a sympathetic forum to promote her agenda.
In trying to prove these pro-life groups wrong, Sharpton quoted the CDC's Web site in describing condoms as acting as an "impermeable barrier," although he ignored the first line of the CDC document which concedes that condoms merely "reduce the risk of STD transmission," as the site displays the words "though not elminate" in parentheses, as the MSNBC host gave the impression that condoms could be considered infallible.
Sharpton introduced the segment:
The situations involving disgraced and relapsed former Congressman Anthony Weiner and Ben Quayle, who hasn't been in politics for about a year, are very analogous. Just ask Katie Glueck at the Politico. Oh, and the the Weiner situation is also very analogous to that of Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell, who has returned $21,000 worth of gifts he should never have taken from a businessperson. Just ask Dana Milbank at the Washington Post.
There appears to be some kind of unwritten rule that you can't attempt to analyze a Democrats' scandalous involvement without dragging a Republican into the mix, no matter how distant or irrelevant the connection. First, let's look at Glueck with Quayle and Weiner (bolds are mine throughout this post):
In the liberal fantasyland that is the Associated Press, it's only Republican governors with an eye on 2016 that are fraught with potential problems that could end their campaigns before they begin. In their May 2 AP story, reporters Bob Lewis and Charles Babington sought to convince readers that the Republicans governors of Virginia, Louisiana, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, and Florida are all train wrecks.
Lewis and Babington focused in particular on Virginia's Bob McDonnell and Louisiana's Bobby Jindal, who are unpopular in no small part because of moves they made on tax policy. McDonnell signed off on massive tax increases for transportation, while Jindal’s failed attempt to reform his state tax code -- making the state income tax free but boosting some sales taxes to make up for lost revenue -- has eroded his once-stellar popularity. Of course, plenty of Democratic governors thinking about 2016 also hiked taxes, but they were curiously left out of the mix.
We've come to expect this sort of thing from MSNBC, but the Associated Press should be ashamed of itself. In a story about Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell (R) signing into law a new voter ID law requiring a photo ID to vote-- which may be provided free-of-charge to indigent Virginians, by the way -- the AP strongly suggested the bill is an attempt by Virginia Republicans to prevent a Democratic presidential candidate from winning the state in 2016.
"Republican majorities in the Virginia House and Senate pushed the bill to passage one year after a more modest GOP-sponsored voter identification law failed to prevent President Barack Obama from winning Virginia for the second presidential election in a row and a Democratic U.S. Senate victory," the AP noted in the fourth paragraph of their March 27 story. As you can see in the full story pasted below, this was in the context of hyping a liberal Democrat's charge that requiring voter ID is akin to Jim Crow-era disenfranchisement efforts (story accessed via FoxNews.com, emphases mine):
[UPDATED BELOW] CNN's Soledad O'Brien showed her glaring liberal double standard on Thursday, citing a liberal source to debunk Mitt Romney's tax plan while casting its supporters as either "completely partisan" or unworthy sources.
Her source, the Tax Policy Center, is the joint venture of two liberal think tanks, but since the American Enterprise Institute is a "conservative think tank" O'Brien threw water on the credibility of its support for Romney's tax plan. And she herself cited a TPC blog post attacking Romney's plan, but wouldn't accept a defense of the plan because it was a "blog post."
For years I have heard abortion enthusiasts contort themselves in knots to avoid saying "baby" when talking about abortion.
Leave it to MSNBC's plucky Rachel Maddow to go where few liberals dare -- acknowledging, albeit indirectly, that abortion involves killing human life at its most vulnerable. (video after page break)