Appearance Alert
MRC's Bozell to appear on Fox News' 'The Kelly File' at 9:40pm ET

CBS Fails to Note How Much Harry Reid's Plan Would Actually Cut from the Deficit

On Wednesday's CBS This Morning, national correspondent Chip Reid glossed over proposals in Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid's fiscal cliff plan that would add to the deficit.

"The bill would also extend long-term unemployment benefits, patch up the alternative minimum tax that threatens to hit even more middle class families and prevent a scheduled dropoff in Medicare reimbursement to doctors," Reid rattled off the proposals without noting whether they would add to or subtract from the deficit.

"[Senator] Reid's plan is expected to extend Bush-era tax cuts for households making less than $250,000 a year. It would also include short-term spending cuts instead of the massive cuts that would occur if there is no deal," Reid reported.

The goal of the fiscal cliff debates is to cut the deficit, but Reid provided no information on how much the "short-term spending cuts" and other proposals would actually reduce the mounting deficit.

"President Obama spent Christmas Day visiting with U.S. Troops in Hawaii," Reid claimed, painting a contrast between the President and a Congress that has a near record-low approval with Americans.

However, NBC's Kristen Welker reported on the Today show that the President didn't spend the whole day with the troops. "Now the President and First Lady spent part of their Christmas visiting with troops stationed here in Hawaii, thanking them for their service before they sat down and enjoyed a traditional Christmas dinner," Welker noted.

A transcript of the segment, which aired on CBS This Morning on December 26 at 7:07 a.m. EST, is as follows:

[7:07]

REBECCA JARVIS: We turn now to political turbulence as the fiscal cliff gets closer. Congress now has six days left to make a deal. Negotiators will be back on Capitol Hill tomorrow, and Chip Reid is in Washington. Chip, good morning.

CHIP REID: Well good morning, Rebecca. President Obama will fly home from his vacation in Hawaii tonight, arriving in Washington tomorrow, and both houses of Congress will also be in session tomorrow. By then, that will give them just five days before the end of the year deadline to put together a deal to avoid the massive automatic tax hikes and spending cuts known as the fiscal cliff.

(Video Clip)

REID: (voice-over) President Obama spent Christmas Day visiting with U.S. Troops in Hawaii.

BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States: Wonderful to see all of you. First of all, we want to say "Merry Christmas" to everybody.

REID: While back in Washington, uncertainty about the looming fiscal cliff continued. There has been no communication between the Republicans and Democrats about how to avoid going over the cliff. Before the Christmas break, Speaker John Boehner was unable to get enough support from Republicans to pass his plan. And he said it was up to the White House and Democratic-led Senate to avert the cliff. So now, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid is believed to be crafting a package of his own, a deal that he'll dare House Republicans not to pass with the end of the year deadline approaching.

Reid's plan is expected to extend Bush-era tax cuts for households making less than $250,000 a year. It would also include short-term spending cuts instead of the massive cuts that would occur if there is no deal. The bill would also extend long-term unemployment benefits, patch up the alternative minimum tax that threatens to hit even more middle class families and prevent a scheduled dropoff in Medicare reimbursement to doctors.

(End Video Clip)

REID: If Republicans do give in and support the deal being put together by Democratic Leader Harry Reid, that deal is expected to be far less favorable to Republicans than the potential deal they had been working on with President Obama.

-- Matt Hadro is a News Analyst at the Media Research Center