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NBC: 'No Coincidence' Lincoln Film Debuts After Obama Re-Election

Eager to draw a comparison between Barack Obama and Abraham Lincoln during a report for Saturday's NBC Nightly News, correspondent Kevin Tibbles observed of the new film about the nation's 16th president: "No coincidence, perhaps, the film opens the week America's 21st century President won re-election in difficult times fraught with partisan bickering. Times in which many ask, what would Lincoln do?" [Listen to the audio]

Tibbles suggested the similarity immediately following a sound bite from director Steven Spielberg: "Lincoln advocated things we hold dear today. He advocated that government can be a positive force for the good of all people."

On Monday, MSNBC host Chris Jansing made a more blatant comparison between the current and past presidents: "But I don't know that even he could have predicted that at this moment when it's being released, there were these parallels, that you have a president who is newly elected, who faces a divided Congress and a divided country."

On Friday's Today, author Jon Meacham compared Obama to Thomas Jefferson.

Here is a portion of Tibbles' November 10 report:

LESTER HOLT: Finally tonight, days after our nation's 44th president was re-elected to a second term, this weekend the spotlight turns to America's 16th president – at the movies at least. Abraham Lincoln getting the big screen treatment courtesy of Steven Spielberg.

(...)

KEVIN TIBBLES: The film has been a decade-long labor of love for director Steven Spielberg.

STEVEN SPIELBERG: Lincoln advocated things we hold dear today. He advocated that government can be a positive force for the good of all people.

TIBBLES: No coincidence, perhaps, the film opens the week America's 21st century President won re-election in difficult times fraught with partisan bickering. Times in which many ask what would Lincoln do?

MICHAEL BESCHLOSS: Well, in Lincoln you had a president who was very eager to unify the country, dealing with a congress that had all sorts of acrimonious factions. Somehow Lincoln had the genius to get everyone to work together.

(...)