CBS was the only network on Wednesday evening to report President
Obama's plan to bypass Congress and force businesses to pay management employees
extra for overtime work. NBC and ABC both ignored the news.
Yet CBS reported the news in a positive manner, noting how "an estimated 10 million workers stand to benefit from the President's plan." White House correspondent Major Garrett said it was "part of President Obama's push to reduce income inequality."
Garrett did provide both sides of the story, quoting "business groups" who opposed the move saying it would limit job creation. However, the overall tone of the story was positive, refusing to call Obama's move a "bypass" or an "end-around" of Congress.
On Wednesday morning, both CBS and NBC touted Obama going shopping to promote his new push for the overtime wage.
And CBS's Gayle King was jubilant on Wednesday morning over Obama's mock-interview with comedian Zach Galifianakis, cheering "Bravo to the President!"
Below is a transcript of the March 12 segment:
CBS Evening News
SCOTT PELLEY: Tomorrow the President will expand overtime pay to millions of Americans who aren't currently getting it. Under federal labor rules, businesses can avoid paying overtime by declaring certain employees managers or professionals. Mr. Obama intends to use his executive authority to change those rules without going through Congress. Major Garrett's at the White House for us tonight. Major?
MAJOR GARRETT: (on camera) Scott, this is part of President Obama's push to reduce income inequality by boosting wages for lower income workers.
(Voice over) An estimated 10 million workers stand to benefit from the President's plan, including supervisors at fast-food restaurants, department store managers, and computer technicians. Right now under federal law, businesses can deny overtime wages, that's time-and-a-half, to any manager or supervisor who earns more than $455 a week, or $23,600 per year. That salary is slightly above the poverty line for a family of four. President Obama will raise that threshold above $455 to anywhere between $550 and $970 per week.
(On camera) Business groups argue this will drive up labor costs, reduce profits and limit new job creation. White house economists conceded that point ever so slightly today, Scott, admitting they held this policy back for five years because the economy was too weak.