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Can't Control Exhilaration Over 'World Stage' for 'Messiah' Obama --7/25/2008


1. Can't Control Exhilaration Over 'World Stage' for 'Messiah' Obama
Barack Obama's Magical Media Tour hit its high point Thursday night as the ABC, CBS and NBC evening newscasts all led with Barack Obama's speech in Berlin, with NBC's Brian Williams and Andrea Mitchell the most giddy, though ABC featured a German man who hailed Obama as "my new messiah." ABC and NBC saw Obama on a "world stage." Charles Gibson teased ABC's newscast: "In a city steeped in history, before a massive crowd, the candidate calls on the world to tear down this generation's walls." NBC anchor Brian Williams, in Berlin, trumpeted how "the first ever African-American running as presumptive nominee of the Democratic Party brought throngs of people into the center of Berlin, streaming into this city, surging to get close to him, to hear his message. And when it was all over, he talked to us." Viewers next heard a sycophantic Williams ooze to Obama: "When an American politician comes to Berlin, we've had some iconic utterances in the past. We've had 'ich bin ein.' We've had 'Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall.' Is the phraseology that you would like remembered, 'people of Berlin, people of the world, this is our moment, this is our time'?"

2. Chris Matthews: Obama's Berlin Speech Had 'Thrill Factor'
Barack Obama is still giving Chris Matthews thrills. On Thursday night's Hardball, before throwing to an Obama clip, Matthews gave the following rave review, on his July 24 show, to the Illinois Senator's speech in Germany: "What, what do you make of this? Let's take another bite here because it was quite a speech. You have to judge for yourself but the speech had its thrill factor, certainly once again. Here he was."

3. Amanpour 'Surprised' by Lack of 'Euphoria' After Obama Speech
CNN's chief international correspondent Christiane Amanpour, reporting on Barack Obama's speech in Berlin on Thursday's The Situation Room, expressed her shock that the European crowd didn't seem to have the same mania for the Democrat that the media have: "I did ask some people as they were leaving what they thought. Everybody said good, good. But I was surprised that there wasn't this sort of euphoria afterwards, given how many people had come to listen and how much it had been anticipated." She later stated in the segment that one unnamed political analyst talked about how "people [in Europe] want a political redeemer -- I mean, that's very specific language, and he said it's not really based on facts, the -- what they think about Obama, because they don't really know. It's based on expectations."

4. ABC's Tapper: Obama Thinks He's President; Denies Media Access
Not every reporter covering Barack Obama's world tour is entranced by the words and imagery of the Democratic candidate. On Thursday's Good Morning America, political correspondent Jake Tapper jabbed at Obama's overconfidence, describing the senator's July 24 speech in Berlin as "one the Obama campaign is billing at almost presidential. Even though he is not the President." Reporting from inside the Obama plane, Tapper complained in a snarky tone: "Inside, the plane has been redesigned to separate the senator and his staff from us lowly reporters." He added that Obama officials told journalists that they could brief reporters as anonymous officials. Tapper grumbled: "One of them said that's what we did at the White House during the Clinton years. We pointed out they don't work at the White House." Regarding the Obama plane, the ABC journalist also pointed out: "The American flag on the tail wing has been replaced by an enormous Obama O."

5. ABC's Cynthia McFadden: McCain Like Obama's Younger Brother
On Wednesday, Nightline co-host Cynthia McFadden and correspondent David Wright condescendingly reported on the disparity in the media's coverage of Barack Obama and John McCain. McFadden began a segment on the Arizona Senator by snidely asserting: "Now, if you have a younger sibling, you can probably relate to what Senator John McCain has been going through this week. Whatever he does, everybody seems to be talking about the new kid in town." Expanding on a report he filed for the July 23 World News, Wright, in an almost embarrassed tone, remarked: "Pity the poor Straight Talk Express. While, Barack Obama is off globe-trotting, grabbing all that high profile, high octane attention, we're here on the tarmac in Allentown, Pennsylvania." He also described the media's obsession with Obama in a passive tone, asking McCain: "Do you kind of feel like you're going to be stuck playing defense from now until November?" and stating, "...It seems like the narrative of this campaign is being driven by whatever Senator Obama does and you're left to kind of react to that."

6. Media's Campaign Donations Tilt 100-to-1 in Favor of Democrats
It's not just the thrills racing up and down Chris Matthews' leg. Writing in Thursday's Investor's Business Daily, author William Tate documented that donations from employees of big media companies are tilting 100-to-1 in favor of the Democrats so far this election cycle. That's right, 100-to-1. It's perhaps not a surprise that those working for NBC Universal are the most eager givers to the Democrats, racking up $104,184 in contributions this cycle, compared to just $3,150 to Republican candidates. Maybe more surprising is that those at Fox broadcasting and the Fox News Channel combined to give $41,853 to the Democrats, with no listed donations going to the Republicans. (Only $1,280 was listed as coming from Fox News employees.)

7. Fox Poll: Two-Thirds Recognize Journalists Want Obama to Win
Just days after a Rasmussen Reports survey was released showing more than three times as many likely voters "believe most reporters will try to help Obama with their coverage" than help John McCain, a Fox News/Opinion Dynamics poll taken July 22-23 of 900 registered voters discovered six times as many think "most member of the media" want Obama to win than wish for a McCain victory. On Thursday's Special Report, FNC's Brit Hume relayed: "67 percent of the respondents think most media members want Obama to win. Just 11 percent think most in the media are for McCain." A FoxNews.com article added this damning finding: "Only about 1 in 10 (11 percent) volunteers the belief that the media is neutral on the race to become the 44th President of the United States." Those polled recognize the tilt in action: "When asked to rate the objectivity of media coverage of the campaigns, Americans feel Obama gets more of a positive spin by a better than 7-to-1 margin (46 percent more positive toward Obama; 6 percent more positive toward McCain)."


Can't Control Exhilaration Over 'World
Stage' for 'Messiah' Obama

Barack Obama's Magical Media Tour hit its high point Thursday night as the ABC, CBS and NBC evening newscasts all led with Barack Obama's speech in Berlin, with NBC's Brian Williams and Andrea Mitchell the most giddy, though ABC featured a German man who hailed Obama as "my new messiah." ABC and NBC saw Obama on a "world stage." Charles Gibson teased ABC's newscast: "In a city steeped in history, before a massive crowd, the candidate calls on the world to tear down this generation's walls." NBC anchor Brian Williams, in Berlin, trumpeted how "the first ever African-American running as presumptive nominee of the Democratic Party brought throngs of people into the center of Berlin, streaming into this city, surging to get close to him, to hear his message. And when it was all over, he talked to us." Viewers next heard a sycophantic Williams ooze to Obama:
"When an American politician comes to Berlin, we've had some iconic utterances in the past. We've had 'ich bin ein.' We've had 'Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall.' Is the phraseology that you would like remembered, 'people of Berlin, people of the world, this is our moment, this is our time'?"

Talking with Andrea Mitchell, an impressed Williams marveled over how "I heard one American reporter tonight say it's hard to come up with a list of others who could draw such a crowd, but then again it's hard to know what we witnessed here today." An equally awed Mitchell gushed: "It's hard to figure out what the comparison is, what do you compare this with?" She soon asserted that in his speech Obama "acknowledged America's flaws."

CBS's Katie Couric teased: "Barack Obama extends the hand of friendship to Europe." Reporter Mark Phillips began: "They've been calling this the 'Obama Show' in Berlin. His appeal here: Part exotic politician, part rock star. And a rock festival-sized crowd of more than 200,000 gathered to see him."

Phillips concluded: "Barack Obama isn't running for office here, but if he were, opinion surveys show he would out-poll John McCain by as much as four to one."

ABC's Gibson was the only anchor to note in his introduction any detractors: "To his admirers, it was a soaring speech with a new vision. To his detractors, it was presumptuous that a candidate for President would deliver a speech as if he were President."

Jake Tapper highlighted: "As for the people who came here today, many of them gushed about his speech." After one man declared "I think he's the new President of America," Tapper segued: "And as if that weren't glowing enough." Viewers then heard from a second man: "I thought it was brilliant. My new messiah."

[This item, by the MRC's Brent Baker, was posted Thursday night on the MRC's blog, NewsBusters.org: newsbusters.org ]

Following Tapper's story, Gibson pointed out, over a matching graphic, how Obama drew many more people in Berlin than either President Kennedy or President Reagan:
"Jake mentioned today's crowd was estimated at 200,000. When John Kennedy in Berlin delivered his famous 'ich bin ein Berliner' speech, the BBC estimated the crowd at 120,000. And when Ronald Reagan stood at the Brandenburg gate and said, 'Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall,' ABC estimated the crowd at 40,000."

Coverage, of Obama's Berlin speech, on the NBC, CBS and ABC evening newscasts of Thursday, July 24:

# NBC Nightly News:

BRIAN WILLIAMS: Good evening from Berlin. As one local journalist put it, if the election were held today, Barack Obama could sail to victory by a margin of 70 percent or more as President of Germany. Perhaps even all of Europe. The only problem is Senator Obama is running for President of the United States. Still, here in Berlin today, not far from where the wall once stood, the man from Chicago, Illinois, the first ever African-American running as presumptive nominee of the Democratic Party, brought throngs of people into the center of Berlin, streaming into this city, surging to get close to him, to hear his message. And when it was all over, he talked to us.
WILLIAMS TO OBAMA AS BOTH WALK OUTDOORS: When an American politician comes to Berlin, we've had some iconic utterances in the past. We've had "Ich bin Ein." We've had "Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall."
OBAMA: I don't rate that high.
WILLIAMS: Is the phraseology that you would like remembered, "people of Berlin, people of the world, this is our moment, this is our time"?
OBAMA TO WILLIAMS: You know, I think that captures what I was trying to communicate, which is that here in Berlin where essentially the west was forged out of World War II, we have now have the opportunity to join not only with Germany, but with all of Europe. And countries of good will to try to reach out and do for the world what we did for Berlin.
WILLIAMS: That was Senator Obama with us immediately after he finished speaking to that crowd. We had a separate sit-down conversation with him earlier. More of that a bit later on in the broadcast.
But first, we're joined here in Berlin by our chief foreign affairs correspondent Andrea Mitchell, who's, of course, been traveling with the Senator. Andrea, I heard one American reporter tonight say it's hard to come up with a list of others who could draw such a crowd, but then again it's hard to know what we witnessed here today.
ANDREA MITCHELL: It's hard to figure out what the comparison is, what do you compare this with? It was his largest crowd ever. More than 200,000 people. And before this group he promised Europe that he would repair its strained relationship with the United States. Addressing a crowd that stretched for a mile to the historic Brandenburg gate.
OBAMA, IN SPEECH: Thank you to the citizens of Berlin. And thank you to the people of Germany.
MITCHELL: Barack Obama broke new barriers, becoming the first presidential candidate to introduce himself on a world stage.
OBAMA: I know that I don't look like the Americans who've previously spoken in this great city.
MITCHELL: Obama said he was speaking as a citizen, not as a candidate for President. But his soaring language and setting were designed to make him look presidential.
OBAMA: The walls between old allies on either side of the Atlantic cannot stand. The walls between races and tribes, natives and immigrants, Christians and Muslims and Jews cannot stand. These now are the walls we must tear down.
MITCHELL: In fact, aside from the brief time-out for exercise, his entire day, including meeting with Germany's leader Chancellor Angela Merkel made him look like a visiting head of state. Why is he getting so much attention so far from home?
OBAMA: I think the world is keenly interested in this election.
MITCHELL: On foreign soil, he acknowledged America's flaws.
OBAMA: We've made our share of mistakes. But I also know how much I love America.
MITCHELL: His message: That as President he would bring the U.S. and Europe together.
OBAMA: People of Berlin, people of the world, this is our moment. This is our time.
MITCHELL: And one discordant note tonight, tonight the Pentagon announced that Barack Obama was due to visit wounded troops in Germany but canceled it after the Pentagon told him that it would not be proper while on a political trip. The Obama campaign confirmed they had been planning to go but said they didn't think it would be appropriate but that he had visited injured troops while with the congressional delegation in Iraq earlier this week.


# CBS Evening News:

COURIC: Good evening, everyone. It was a highly unusual scene for a candidate, smack in the middle of an American presidential campaign. It was Barack Obama in Berlin today. He was there, he said, as a citizen, not a President. But clearly the goal was to look like one for voters back home. Mark Phillips is in Berlin.

MARK PHILLIPS: They've been calling this the "Obama Show" in Berlin. His appeal here, part exotic politician, part rock star. And a rock festival-sized crowd of more than 200,000 gathered to see him.
BARACK OBAMA, IN SPEECH: Tonight I speak to you not as a candidate for President but as a citizen.
PHILLIPS: But they had come to see the candidate, to see if an Obama presidency would, in fact, be different from the current one. He told them a lot of what they wanted to hear -- that Europe and the U.S. had drifted apart and that he would pull them back together.
OBAMA: In Europe, the view that America is part of what has gone wrong in our world rather than a force to help us make it right has become all too common. In America, there are voices that deride and deny the importance of Europe's role in our security and our future. Both views miss the truth.
PHILLIPS: The truth and the future, he said, lay in cooperation. This is the city known for the wall that once divided it. The wall Ronald Reagan famously said here should be leveled.
PRESIDENT RONALD REAGAN, JUNE 12, 1987: Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall.
PHILLIPS: Barack Obama said new walls now needed the same treatment.
OBAMA: The walls between the countries with the most and those with the least cannot stand. The walls between races and tribes, natives and immigrants, Christians and Muslims and Jews cannot stand. These now are the walls we must tear down. (Applause)
PHILLIPS: However warm the reception here, the real audience for the speech, of course, is at home. It's part of the Obama pitch that his approach can heal the rifts with America's allies in Europe and restore American prestige abroad. The speech is the first foreign test of that idea. And if the reaction was any indication, here, at least, the idea works. On all the hot-button issues, from climate change to trade protectionism, to the fight against terrorism, his "we're all in this together" approach won applause.
OBAMA: If we could win a battle of ideas against the communists, we can stand with the vast majority of Muslims who reject the extremism that leads to hate instead of hope. (Applause)
PHILLIPS: But there's a danger in all this cooperativeness, one seen even here.
CONSTANZE STELZENMUELLER, GERMAN MARSHALL FUND OF THE U.S.: He, obviously, can't afford back home to be seen as somebody who panders to Europeans.
PHILLIPS: Barack Obama isn't running for office here, but if he were, opinion surveys show he would out-poll John McCain by as much as four to one. Mark Phillips, CBS News, Berlin.


# ABC's World News:

CHARLES GIBSON, IN OPENING TEASER: Welcome to World News. Tonight, Barack Obama in Berlin: In a city steeped in history, before a massive crowd, the candidate calls on the world to tear down this generation's walls.

...

GIBSON: Good evening. Barack Obama stepped to the center of the world stage today. Speaking in Berlin before a sea of humanity, he called for the U.S. and Europe to tear down the walls between continents. "This is the moment," was his constant refrain. To his admirers, it was a soaring speech with a new vision. To his detractors, it was presumptuous that a candidate for President would deliver a speech as if he were President. Jake Tapper starts our coverage tonight from Berlin. Jake, good evening.

JAKE TAPPER: Good evening, Charlie. Well, it was, on its face, quite unusual. A Democratic presidential candidate coming to Germany to describe his vision of the world. Barack Obama spoke before his largest crowd ever, more than 200,000 people, almost none of whom could vote for him.
BARACK OBAMA: Not only have walls come down in Berlin-
TAPPER: In the shadow of the Victory Column celebrating a 19th century war, Senator Barack Obama today shared his vision for peace.
OBAMA: Tonight, I speak to you not as a candidate for President, but as a citizen. A proud citizen of the United States, and a fellow citizen of the world. I know that I don't look like the Americans who've preciously spoken in this great city.
TAPPER: But it isn't just that Obama does not look like the Presidents who have spoken here before him.
JOHN F. KENNEDY: Ich bin ein Berlinner.
RONALD REAGAN: Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall.
TAPPER: It was that they were Presidents, Obama a mere candidate. Today, Obama alluded to Ronald Reagan's speech and the fall of the Berlin Wall in his call to meet 21st century challenges.
OBAMA: The walls between the countries with the most and those with the least cannot stand. The walls between races and tribes, Christians and Muslims and Jews, cannot stand. These now are the walls we must tear down.
TAPPER: The crowd of more than 200,000 here in Berlin received Senator Obama's speech rather warmly. The bigger question, of course, how was it received on the other side of the Atlantic, in the United States, where Senator Obama has had trouble reaching that Commander-in-Chief threshold with many voters. Towards the end of his speech, Obama seemed almost apologetic about the last eight years.
OBAMA: I know my country has not perfected itself. And there are times when our actions around the world have not lived up to our best intentions. But I also know how much I love America. I know that for more than two centuries, we have strived, at great cost and great sacrifice, to form a more perfect union.
TAPPER: And as for the people who came here today, many of them gushed about his speech.
UNIDENTIFIED MAN #1: I think he's the new President of America.
TAPPER: And as if that weren't glowing enough-
UNIDENTIFIED MAN #2: I thought it was brilliant. My new messiah.
TAPPER: There was another message implicit in Senator Obama's speech today, Charlie. And that is, it might not be such a horrible thing for the United States to elect a President who is applauded by Europeans, not just protested. Of course, not every American thinks that the approval of the Europeans is to be desired.

Chris Matthews: Obama's Berlin Speech
Had 'Thrill Factor'

Barack Obama is still giving Chris Matthews thrills. On Thursday night's Hardball, before throwing to an Obama clip, Matthews gave the following rave review, on his July 24 show, to the Illinois Senator's speech in Germany: "What, what do you make of this? Let's take another bite here because it was quite a speech. You have to judge for yourself but the speech had its thrill factor, certainly once again. Here he was."

[This item, by the MRC's Geoffrey Dickens, was posted Thursday afternoon on the MRC's blog, NewsBusters.org: newsbusters.org ]

However Matthews wasn't in such a jovial mood near the end of the program. Looking over new battleground polls, showing Obama with a lead, Matthews joined guest Bob Herbert in fearing the "polls aren't as accurate as we'd like to think they are."

BOB HERBERT, NEW YORK TIMES COLUMNIST: Obama should be 15 or 20 or a Democrat should be 15 or 20 percent ahead in the poll, at this stage of the race. And the second thing is I don't trust these polls. I think Obama's numbers are a little bit lower than the polls show and I think McCain's numbers are a little bit higher.
MATTHEWS: That's my fear too. And looking at it I think these polls aren't as accurate as we'd like to think they are.

To read more about Obama thrilling Matthews, see: www.mrc.org

And: www.mrc.org

Amanpour 'Surprised' by Lack of 'Euphoria'
After Obama Speech

CNN's chief international correspondent Christiane Amanpour, reporting on Barack Obama's speech in Berlin on Thursday's The Situation Room, expressed her shock that the European crowd didn't seem to have the same mania for the Democrat that the media have: "I did ask some people as they were leaving what they thought. Everybody said good, good. But I was surprised that there wasn't this sort of euphoria afterwards, given how many people had come to listen and how much it had been anticipated." She later stated in the segment that one unnamed political analyst talked about how "people [in Europe] want a political redeemer -- I mean, that's very specific language, and he said it's not really based on facts, the -- what they think about Obama, because they don't really know. It's based on expectations."

During the segment, which began just after the top of the 5 pm Eastern hour of the CNN program, host Wolf Blitzer asked Amanpour, "why do they apparently like him so much, not only in Germany, but throughout Western Europe?" She gave the standard media talking point about Obama in general: "They like him, some people say, because he is something new, he is a new generation, he's promising change, and people here are desperate for change." Amanpour then reported on how Europeans apparently like Obama because "he is not President Bush, and they're slightly traumatized still from the last seven years of this 'go-it-alone' policy, which has seen so much war and has created so much division."

[This item, by the MRC's Matthew Balan, was posted Thursday evening on the MRC's blog, NewsBusters.org: newsbusters.org ]

They're traumatized by a non-existent reality? Of course, the U.S. did not "go it alone" against al Qaeda and the Taliban in Afghanistan, and despite the opposition from Western European counties like Germany and France, it did not "go it alone" into Iraq.

Earlier in the day, Amanpour appeared on American Morning at the beginning of the 6 am Eastern hour and used the same "go-it alone" term: "Would he return America to multilateral diplomacy, for instance, rather than the go-it-alone approach of the eight years of the President Bush administration?" She also compared the expected large turnout to a popular German festivity: "[Y]ou've heard of Oktoberfest in Germany. Well, this you might call 'Obamafest.' There's a great deal of excitement."

The full transcript of Amanpour's report from the Thursday, July 24 The Situation Room:

WOLF BLITZER: And let's go to Berlin right now. Our chief international correspondent Christiane Amanpour has been watching all of this unfold all day today. Christiane, why do they apparently like him so much, not only in Germany, but throughout Western Europe?

CHRISTIANE AMANPOUR: Well, they like him to the tune of some 200,000 people who came out here, according to police estimates now, which is a massive crowd. They like him, some people say, because he is something new, he is a new generation, he's promising change, and people here are desperate for change. They like him because he is not President Bush, and they're slightly traumatized still from the last seven years of this 'go-it-alone' policy, which has seen so much war and has created so much division. So, for all those reasons, they find him wildly attractive, but they also want to know about his policies, Wolf.
WOLF BLITZER: Did you get a sense, Christiane, that he actually delivered with his presentation, with his speech, his appearance in Berlin? Did people walk away seemingly satisfied or disappointed?
AMANPOUR: Well, I don't think they were disappointed, and I'm not sure that they were thoroughly satisfied. I did ask some people as they were leaving what they thought. Everybody said good, good. But I was surprised that there wasn't this sort of euphoria afterwards, given how many people had come to listen and how much it had been anticipated. To be sure, there were spikes during the speech which drew large cheers and applause, at least from the crowds immediately around him -- when he talked about removing the walls between various religions and ethnicities and other groups; when he talked about working together for new cooperation. By the way, you can hear now the sounds of people dismantling everything that was put up for this event. But, when he talked about a common destiny; when he talked about a partnership; when he talked, for instance, about a battle of ideas, referring to how the United States and its allies won the battle of idea over communism and saw the end of communism; surely, that we can win the battle of ideas and support the -- as he said, the vast majority of Muslims who are committed to peace and isolate them from the extremists. So, things like that drew big cheers.
BLITZER: It's clear they like Obama in Europe. What about John McCain? What do they think about the Republican candidate?
AMANPOUR: Well, you know, if you look at the polls, they speak very loudly, not that the people here are voting in the presidential election in the United States. But the poll numbers for Barack Obama are vastly higher than those for John McCain. I think it's because to them, he represents something totally new and they want something totally new. What -- what one political analyst here said to me is people want a political redeemer -- I mean, that's very specific language, and he said it's not really based on facts, the -- what they think about Obama, because they don't really know. It's based on expectations.
BLITZER: Christiane Amanpour in Berlin for us. Christiane, thanks.

ABC's Tapper: Obama Thinks He's President;
Denies Media Access

Not every reporter covering Barack Obama's world tour is entranced by the words and imagery of the Democratic candidate. On Thursday's Good Morning America, political correspondent Jake Tapper jabbed at Obama's overconfidence, describing the senator's July 24 speech in Berlin as "one the Obama campaign is billing at almost presidential. Even though he is not the President."

Reporting from inside the Obama plane, Tapper complained in a snarky tone: "Inside, the plane has been redesigned to separate the senator and his staff from us lowly reporters." He added that Obama officials told journalists that they could brief reporters as anonymous officials. Tapper grumbled: "One of them said that's what we did at the White House during the Clinton years. We pointed out they don't work at the White House." Regarding the Obama plane, the ABC journalist also pointed out: "The American flag on the tail wing has been replaced by an enormous Obama O."

[This item, by the MRC's Scott Whitlock, was posted Thursday afternoon on the MRC's blog, NewsBusters.org: newsbusters.org ]

Tapper's complaints about lack of access and campaign hubris sound like the type of typical gripes you would expect and hope to hear from journalists about all candidates. The fact that Tapper's statements are so rare shows just how deep the media love is for Obama.

A transcript of the July 24 segment, which aired at 7:08am:

DIANE SAWYER: We want to turn now to the race for '08. The new poll out showing Barack Obama leading 47 to 41 percent over John McCain and it comes as the candidates engage in two very different campaign schedules. Our correspondents are opening their notebooks this morning to take you behind the scenes and we'll get to ABC's David Wright for a look at John McCain in just a minute. But beginning with senior political correspondent Jake Tapper in Berlin with Barack Obama this morning. Jake?

JAKE TAPPER: Guten Tag, Diane. Well, we just arrived in Berlin a few hours ago. Everything about this trip has been choreographed to make Senator Obama appear like President Obama and that's certainly the case with the speech he's going to deliver later today here at the Victory Column in central Berlin. Senator Barack Obama and German Chancellor Angela Merkel met this morning, just a few hours after Obama's pre-dawn visit to Jerusalem's western wall, his last stop in Israel. For the first stop of his European swing, Obama's campaign has been pulling out all the stops, distributing these flyers in German to round up a huge crowd for his speech tonight, one the Obama campaign is billing at almost presidential. Even though he is not the president. From the scenic vistas in Jordan where local reporters clambered for his attention-
SENATOR BARACK OBAMA: Reporters are the same everywhere, aren't they?
TAPPER: -to his hobnobbing with world leaders, to his military exercises in Israel and Iraq, everything about this trip is meticulously designed to make you comfortable with Obama as commander in chief. That started with his newly retrofitted plane. The American flag on the tail wing has been replaced by an enormous Obama "O." And the slogan "change we can believe in" is on the sides. [Tapper is now inside the plane.] Inside, the plane has been redesigned to separate the senator and his staff from us lowly reporters. And this was the site of a big media mutiny the other day as Obama officials insisted they'd be able to brief us on background as anonymous officials. One of them said that's what we did at the White House during the Clinton years. We pointed out they don't work at the White House. Other flourishes, an Obama napkin holder after we refueled in Ireland.
OBAMA: The world is keenly interested in this election. And I think they're hungry for a sense of where America is going. So, you know, certainly there's a curiosity factor involved.
TAPPER: Some authorities are anticipating a crowd as big as one million, but Senator Obama said we should not set our expectations too high for the crowd. He expects it to be more like in the tens of thousands. Diane?
SAWYER: All right, Jake. I want to say, Jake, I don't want to be around if there's a media mutiny and you're one of the mutineers. I would be running for the hills. Okay. Thanks so much.

ABC's Cynthia McFadden: McCain Like Obama's
Younger Brother

On Wednesday, Nightline co-host Cynthia McFadden and correspondent David Wright condescendingly reported on the disparity in the media's coverage of Barack Obama and John McCain. McFadden began a segment on the Arizona Senator by snidely asserting: "Now, if you have a younger sibling, you can probably relate to what Senator John McCain has been going through this week. Whatever he does, everybody seems to be talking about the new kid in town."

Expanding on a report he filed for the July 23 World News, Wright, in an almost embarrassed tone, remarked: "Pity the poor Straight Talk Express. While, Barack Obama is off globe-trotting, grabbing all that high profile, high octane attention, we're here on the tarmac in Allentown, Pennsylvania." He also described the media's obsession with Obama in a passive tone, asking McCain: "Do you kind of feel like you're going to be stuck playing defense from now until November?" and stating, "...It seems like the narrative of this campaign is being driven by whatever Senator Obama does and you're left to kind of react to that." Wright confidently predicted that in the next few days, "What can you almost guarantee he [McCain] will be talking about? Obama." Something, one assumes, people like David Wright will make happen.

[This item, by the MRC's Scott Whitlock, was posted Thursday afternoon on the MRC's blog, NewsBusters.org: newsbusters.org ]

In a companion piece for Thursday's Good Morning America, Wright complained: "Columbus, Ohio doesn't have quite the same flair as a European jaunt. You might call it a meat and potatoes campaign stop." He also pointed out that McCain had planned on touring an oil well, but had to cancel due to Hurricane Dolly. Wright opined: "Worse than that, an oil spill closed 29 miles of the Mississippi River, not exactly the best visual for McCain to make the case that America needs to drill more oil wells."

Wright has developed a long history of pro-Obama bias. On February 19, 2008, he suggested Obama rallies are like "Springsteen concerts, but the tickets are free." On April 30, 2008, reporting on the senator's break with his incendiary pastor, Reverend Jeremiah Wright, David Wright (no relation) empathized: "For Obama, whose own father abandoned him as a child, this must have been another painful break." For more on Wright's Springsteen remark, see a February 21, 2008 CyberAlert: www.mrc.org

For more on his comments about Jeremiah Wright, see a May 1, 2008 CyberAlert item: www.mrc.org

A transcript of the July 23 Nightline segment:

CYNTHIA MCFADDEN: Now, if you have a younger sibling, you can probably relate to what Senator John McCain has been going through this week. Whatever he does, everybody seems to be talking about the new kid in town. With Barack Obama popping up in four international hot spots in as many days, with the press, including us at ABC News close behind, little wonder that the senator from Arizona has expressed a tad of frustration, as ABC's David Wright reports in tonight's "trail mix".

DAVID WRIGHT: Pity the poor Straight Talk Express. While, Barack Obama is off globe-trotting, grabbing all that high profile, high octane attention, we're here on the tarmac in Allentown, Pennsylvania, on our way to Columbus, Ohio, tonight. Well, the McCain campaign has printed out the new press credentials in English and French. They say, the "JV press squad." The varsity? Well, they are off on their grand tour. For Obama, it's a week of million dollar photo-ops. Meeting foreign dignitaries. Hobnobbing with generals. Shooting hoops with the grunts. It's easy to appear presidential when your chauffeur is a bona fide king. And McCain, well, he's touring the capitals of the rust belt.
SENATOR JOHN MCCAIN [talking to a voter]: And by the way I'll let you have the microphone again if you'd like. WRIGHT: Patiently answering voters' questions, trying to focus on the economy but everywhere he goes-
UNIDENTIFIED VOTER: Senator, your, your opponent, your theoretical opponent in the fall campaign, Barack Obama- WRIGHT: The JV press corps seems obsessed-
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE REPORTER: Apparently, just out of a meeting that Prime Minister Maliki had with Barack Obama-
WRIGHT: -it's all about him. Over there. Even Conan O'Brien won't leave it alone.
CONAN O'BRIEN: You have been critical of him because he hasn't been there before. Now he's been there, does that push this issue to rest?
MCCAIN: Well, I'm glad he's going.
WRIGHT: Do you kind of feel like you're going to be stuck playing defense from now until November?
MCCAIN: I'm happy with where we are, David. We are basically tied in the polls today, in every national poll or somewhat behind. I'm very happy with where we are. I'm playing offense throughout this thing.
WRIGHT: But I suppose what I meant by the question is that, you know, it seems like the narrative of this campaign is being driven by whatever Senator Obama does and you're left to kind of react to that.
MCCAIN: Well, it may seem like that to you. It doesn't seem like to me.
WRIGHT: What's maverick Republican to do? McCain had hoped to steal a little thunder from Obama by spending part of tomorrow on an oil rig off the coast of Louisiana.
SAM CHAMPION: This is what it looks like when a category two hurricane makes landfall.
WRIGHT: Mother Nature had other ideas. Real thunder stole his thunder. The trip was scrapped. So the McCain campaign is fighting back with another force of nature. Tour de France champion Lance Armstrong is expected to endorse him tomorrow night. We are told that Thursday is going to be a big show-stealing surprise. Are you going to name your vice president?
MCCAIN: We're not talking about it.
WRIGHT: Probably not?
MCCAIN: We're not talking about it.
WRIGHT: So that's not a denial?
MCCAIN: We're not talking about it. That's been my consistent statement throughout, David.
WRIGHT: What can you almost guarantee he will be talking about? Obama. I'm David Wright for "Nightline" in Allentown, Pennsylvania.
MCFADDEN: To add insult to injury, Barack Obama departs for Germany tomorrow where he will meet with Chancellor Angela Merkel and finishes his day with an outdoor speech that Berlin authorities could attract up to a million spectators.

Media's Campaign Donations Tilt 100-to-1
in Favor of Democrats

It's not just the thrills racing up and down Chris Matthews' leg. Writing in Thursday's Investor's Business Daily, author William Tate documented that donations from employees of big media companies are tilting 100-to-1 in favor of the Democrats so far this election cycle. That's right, 100-to-1.

[This item, by the MRC's Rich Noyes, was posted Thursday morning on the MRC's blog, NewsBusters.org: newsbusters.org ]

Tate's op-ed: www.ibdeditorials.com

It's perhaps not a surprise that those working for NBC Universal are the most eager givers to the Democrats, racking up $104,184 in contributions this cycle, compared to just $3,150 to Republican candidates. Maybe more surprising is that those at Fox broadcasting and the Fox News Channel combined to give $41,853 to the Democrats, with no listed donations going to the Republicans. (Only $1,280 was listed as coming from Fox News employees.)

Here's an excerpt from Tate's analysis, which also appeared at the American Thinker:

The New York Times' refusal to publish John McCain's rebuttal to Barack Obama's Iraq op-ed may be the most glaring example of liberal media bias this journalist has ever seen. But true proof of widespread media bias requires one to follow an old journalism maxim: Follow the money....

An analysis of federal records shows that the amount of money journalists contributed so far this election cycle favors Democrats by a 15:1 ratio over Republicans, with $225,563 going to Democrats, only $16,298 to Republicans.

Two-hundred thirty-five journalists donated to Democrats, just 20 gave to Republicans -- a margin greater than 10-to-1. An even greater disparity, 20-to-1, exists between the number of journalists who donated to Barack Obama and John McCain.

Searches for other newsroom categories (reporters, correspondents, news editors, anchors, newspaper editors and publishers) produces 311 donors to Democrats to 30 donors to Republicans, a ratio of just over 10-to-1. In terms of money, $279,266 went to Dems, $20,709 to Republicans, a 14-to-1 ratio.

END of Excerpt

As posted on the American Thinker: www.americanthinker.com

Because most news organizations ban contributions to political candidates, Tate warns, the numbers he presents are perhaps just the tip of the iceberg. But it's just another indication of how the media elite are at odds with mainstream America.

Fox Poll: Two-Thirds Recognize Journalists
Want Obama to Win

Just days after a Rasmussen Reports survey was released showing more than three times as many likely voters "believe most reporters will try to help Obama with their coverage" than help John McCain, a Fox News/Opinion Dynamics poll taken July 22-23 of 900 registered voters discovered six times as many think "most member of the media" want Obama to win than wish for a McCain victory. On Thursday's Special Report, FNC's Brit Hume relayed: "67 percent of the respondents think most media members want Obama to win. Just 11 percent think most in the media are for McCain."

A FoxNews.com article added this damning finding: "Only about 1 in 10 (11 percent) volunteers the belief that the media is neutral on the race to become the 44th President of the United States." Those polled recognize the tilt in action: "When asked to rate the objectivity of media coverage of the campaigns, Americans feel Obama gets more of a positive spin by a better than 7-to-1 margin (46 percent more positive toward Obama; 6 percent more positive toward McCain)." The online article: www.foxnews.com

[This item, by the MRC's Brent Baker, was posted late Thursday night on the MRC's blog, NewsBusters.org: newsbusters.org ]

Hume announced Thursday night, July 24, after a story which cited other findings from the poll:
"Most of the people who participated in that new Fox News poll think journalists want Obama to win and many believe they are giving him better coverage: 67 percent of the respondents think most media members want Obama to win. Just 11 percent think most in the media are for McCain. 46 percent believe Obama's campaign is receiving more positive coverage, just 6 percent say that about McCain. 36 percent believe the media have covered both objectively."

Even the overwhelming majority of Democrats assume journalists are pulling for Obama. A PDF of the full poll results shows that in response to the question, "Which presidential candidate -- Barack Obama or John McCain -- do you think most members of the media want to win the election?", 61 percent of Democrats said Obama, compared to 77 percent of Republicans and 63 percent of independents. A mere 14 percent of Democrats believe members of the media want McCain to win.

Back in September of 2004, 46 percent thought journalists wanted John Kerry to win compared to 26 percent who believed reporters preferred George Bush. The PDF: www.foxnews.com

The July 22 CyberAlert item, "Half See Pro-Obama Bias and Say Media Make Economy Seem Worse," recounted:

More than three times as many Americans see a media tilt in favor of Democrat Barack Obama than toward Republican John McCain. A Rasmussen Reports telephone survey released Monday, of 1,000 likely voters, "found that 49 percent of voters believe most reporters will try to help Obama with their coverage, up from 44 percent a month ago," compared to a piddling 14 percent who "believe most reporters will try to help John McCain win" while "just one voter in four (24%) believes that most reporters will try to offer unbiased coverage."

Exactly half, 50 percent, "believe the media makes economic conditions appear worse than they really are," a separate Rasmussen Reports telephone survey posted on Monday determined. That poll discovered "a plurality of Americans (41%) similarly believe that the media has tried to make the war in Iraq appear worse that it really is, while 26 percent say reporters have made it look better than reality and 25 percent think they've portrayed it accurately."

For the full rundown: www.mrc.org

The "How the Public Views the Media" section of the MRC's "Media Bias Basics" lists many more surveys of how the public perceive journalists and the news media: www.mediaresearch.org

-- Brent Baker