On Sunday’s Face the Nation on CBS, host Bob Schieffer twisted the meaning of a recent Washington Post poll on the election of Scott Brown in Massachusetts: “Three-fourths of those voters...said they wanted Brown to work with Democrats to get Republican ideas into legislation....the vote for Brown was not so much a vote for or against policy or party, as it was a vote against the process itself.”
Schieffer seemed to completely ignore the fact that the poll showed 65% of those who voted for Brown did so to “express opposition to the Democratic agenda in Washington.” Instead, Schieffer tried to spin the data as evidence that voters were upset with both parties: “People don’t like the political games....if the two sides could somehow pay less attention to the voices on the fringes of the Left and the Right, take the Massachusetts voters’ advice, sit down together and see what they can agree on, who knows? They might get something done.”
At the top of his commentary, Schieffer pretended that the meaning of Brown’s extraordinary win was uncertain, rather than a rebuke of the Democratic Party: “Figuring out what Scott Brown’s victory meant has set off a fiercer debate than trying to divine the meaning of the Book of Job. We were all certain it meant something profound, we just weren’t sure what.”
Not mentioned in the laundry list of accusations of "macho" politics: The womanizing and worse committed by the late liberal Sen. Ted Kennedy.
Imagine my non-surprise when I saw the results (graph follows the jump):
During Tuesday night's coverage of the Massachusetts special election, CNN and MSNBC aired only a fraction of the Republican candidate's speech. Fox News Channel aired both candidates' speeches in their entirety.
.... CNN only ran 26% of Brown's speech, while MSNBC aired 37%. Fox News Channel carried 100% of both speeches:
Democrats now routinely say Martha Coakley was a bad candidate who took too much for granted in Massachusetts, even taking a vacation after winning the nomination for Ted Kennedy’s place in the Senate. But would they say the bad candidate was also failed by bad reporters who took too much for granted? On Monday, Washington Post reporter Howard Kurtz found a bigwig at the Boston Globe who arrogantly dismissed the race and took a vacation. He wasn’t even apologetic about the arrogance:
Frank Phillips, the Globe's statehouse bureau chief, says he missed the last few days of the campaign by taking a personal trip with his wife that he finalized a couple of weeks earlier. "I made a decision at Christmas that this was not going to be an important race, others could handle it, I could be out of town," Phillips says.
But he says Brown was going nowhere earlier in the campaign: "What would you have written? 'Things were heating up'? Things weren't heating up. It would be unfair to say we had missed it, because it wasn't there."
Cokie Roberts and Sam Donaldson also contended people really want ObamaCare and so the White House, Donaldson asserted, should have pushed it more “vigorously” and he despaired that “Republicans were able the make the idea that being on a government health program is terrible. How absurd.”
ABC News veteran Roberts declared of Brown’s win: “I think it's much more the process than the substance” as voters said “‘a pox on both your houses. You know, we don't like any of you guys’” since “when you ask which party do you trust more with various issues, the Republicans do worse than the Democrats. So it's not a Republican tide, but it is a ‘throw the bums out’ tide.”
The retired ABC newsman Sam Donaldson echoed it was “throw the bums out” and “the bums at the moment happen to be in. They're the Democrats. And, therefore, I don't care what your name is, or how much experience you have or don't have, or what your positions are even. You're the other guy.” Former George W. Bush campaign chief Matthew Dowd agreed “it wasn't a Republican victory. It was a victory for an outsider.”
The president of NBC has officially responded to Joe Scarborough criticizing Keith Olbermann for his attacks on Scott Brown.
In a memo obtained by the Huffington Post, Phil Griffin told his on air staff: "We do not publicly criticize our colleagues. This kind of behavior is unprofessional and will not be tolerated."
Griffin was addressing comments made by MSNBC's Scarborough about Olbermann. As NewsBusters reported Monday, the "Morning Joe" host first tweeted his disapproval of the "Countdown" host's comments about Brown -- "How reckless and how sad" -- reiterating on his program Tuesday morning, "Sad and pathetic.
As a result, Griffin sent out the following memo Friday (h/t TVNewser):
Is there anything stranger than a liberal reporter being upset that a semi-nude picture from 1982 didn’t sink a political candidate? Washington Post reporter Monica Hesse stamped on the sour grapes on Wednesday with a temper tantrum of an article on the front page of the Style section headlined "It’s okay. Scott Brown was just being a man. Ah, gender equity. That Cosmo spread might have sunk a woman".
What a snide, opinionated headline! Hesse began by suggesting nude pics had surfaced of Martha Coakley, and then, surprise, it was the other way around. Hesse’s topic sentence: "The morning after the election, a student of gender politics might ask: How different would the story have looked if the shoe -- Lack of shoes? Lack of clothes? -- actually had been on the female body?"
She found an expert to endorse and repeat the complaint:
I guess it takes a liberal comedian to bring a liberal buffoon to his senses, for a day after Comedy Central's Jon Stewart scolded Keith Olbermann for his disgraceful rants against Senator-elect Scott Brown, the "Countdown" host apologized.
After showing the full clip of Stewart's fabulous smackdown on the previous night's "Daily Show," the MSNBCer said Friday:
"You're right. I have been a little over the top lately. Point taken. Sorry."
Unfortunately, the apology was to Stewart, not to the object of Olbermann's repeated attacks (video below the fold with partial transcript):
Barack Obama certainly didn't expect to receive as an anniversary gift a previously little-known Republican stealing Ted Kennedy's vacated Senate seat along with the President's precious filibuster-proof majority.
But with Scott Brown's surprising victory in Massachusetts Tuesday night, that's exactly what the chief executive got 364 days after putting his hand on the Bible swearing to protect and defend this great land.
As the Administration and its Party lick their wounds, the recriminations and finger-pointing have become almost as fun to watch as the returns were election night; the excuses for shoo-in Democrat Martha Coakley's colossal collapse comically traverse the political spectrum from the predictable to the theater of the absurd.
Take for example MSNBC's Keith Olbermann who actually smelled a touch of racism in the Massachusetts air Tuesday (videos embedded below the fold with partial transcripts):
Whatever version of healthcare reform President Obama gets from Congress will look nothing like the promises he made while campaigning.
According to NPR, it has nothing to do with Obama belting empty campaign slogans. Rather, NPR fired off a litany of conservative bogeymen, from Republicans to moderate Democrats to Sarah Palin's "death panels" to explain why Obama's campaign message has failed to materialize.
In an article printed Thursday called "Why Public Support For Health Care Faltered," NPR, in cooperation with Kaiser Health News, began with the assumption that President Obama really meant his dream of healthcare for all that would magically be free:
CNBC "Squawk Box" co-hosts Joe Kernen and Becky Quick get it. Unfortunately, their CNBC colleague that covers Washington, D.C. for the network doesn't.
On the Jan. 22 broadcast, Harwood appeared on the program to give a status report on the current version of health care reform being negotiated in Congress and what it means in the aftermath of Scott Brown's filibuster-proof busting election victory in Massachusetts on Jan. 20. Kernen suggested that the health care bill might have been forced through if not Brown's election and the public fervor it revealed.
"I think it's unbelievable that it would have gone through and they would have definitely jammed it through if this weird, serendipitous seat hadn't opened up and if there hadn't been a special election, 17 percent of the economy - based on what they wanted to do, based on what these elected officials wanted to do, against what the public wants - they would have just rammed it through, either way," Kernen said.
Comedian Jon Stewart Thursday absolutely tore Keith Olbermann apart for his disgraceful rants against Massachusetts Republican Scott Brown.
As NewsBusters reported here, here, and here, the "Countdown" host this week repeatedly attacked the Senator-elect as "an irresponsible, homophobic, racist, reactionary, ex-nude model, teabagging supporter of violence against woman and against politicians with whom he disagrees."
On Thursday, the "Daily Show" host scolded Olbermann for his atrocious behavior saying, "I think that's the harshest description of anyone I've ever heard uttered on MSNBC, and that includes descriptions of the guys that star in your weekend prison program."
Maybe even more shocking, Stewart ripped the MSNBCer for attacking other conservatives including Roger Ailes, the owner of Fox News.
Better still, the Comedy Central star surprisingly defended Michelle Malkin stating that Olbermann's October 13 comments regarding her sounded "a lot more like violence against women than anything Scott Brown ever said" (video embedded below the fold with transcribed highlights, h/t Story Balloon):