Those Ignorant, Racist Tea-Baggers
"The collective IQ of Searchlight, Nevada plunged over the weekend as the Tea Party Tart, Sarah Palin, brought her flannel-and-flapjacks followers to Harry Reid's hometown. 'Send Obuma (sic) Back to Kenya,' read one T-shirt, suggesting that Palin's staunchest supporters attempt to make up for their lack of intelligence with white-hot, visceral race hatred. The hot saliva launched in the face of Rep. Emanuel Cleaver on Capitol Hill is a fitting metaphor for the entire Tea Party, a movement that not only aerobically hates government, but drives across the country for the chance to spit in the face of a black man trying to lead."
- Time's Joe Klein writing on the magazine's "Swampland" blog, April 1.
"By now, there should be no disputing the racist and Nazi elements that signify the tea-baggers, but the wing-nuts still try to dress up their bigotry as public policy - 'government health care,' 'too much spending,' 'cap and tax,' yada, yada, yada. As if these clowns wouldn't have been the first in line to support Ronald Reagan if he'd come out for socialist health care or the feds taking over General Motors. But, because now the President happens to be black, suddenly conservatives think these things are big no-nos...."
- MSNBC's Dylan Ratigan on The Dylan Ratigan Show, April 1.
Meredith Shakes Her Broomstick
Co-host Meredith Vieira: "Now Senator DeMint, as House Speaker Nancy Pelosi was walking into the Capitol, I noticed one of the Tea Party protesters was brandishing a broom in her direction. Was he calling the Speaker a witch? And by-"
Sen. Jim DeMint: "Oh, c'mon Meredith. I saw that protester, too. He was chanting 'Sweep the bums out!'"
Vieira: "-and, and no Senator, as I was going to say, by implication aren't the protesters implying that they want to burn Nancy Pelosi at the stake? Like they did at the Salem Witch Trials? And if so, will you, sir, condemn this kind of atrocious language? And if this happens again, will you have these protesters arrested?"
- NBC Today show, April 1.
"Ugly" Tea Partiers "Swarming" the Streets Again?
"Now, as many of you know, the health care debate turned ugly when too many citizens still not over how African-Americans earned equal rights in this country set their sights on denying all of us access to health care. Now, in what some see as another ugly turn, those same so-called 'Tea Party' activists have turned their sites on President Obama's noble dream of providing a free college education to all. So, Jake, should we fear more protesters swarming the streets of D.C., yelling racial slurs and gay epithets, trying, once again, to slow social progress?"
- Anchor Diane Sawyer to White House correspondent Jake Tapper, ABC's World News, April 1.
Decoding Palin's Right-Wing Threats
"Richard, is this something that's going to backfire on the Republicans? I mean, when Sarah Palin says that she wants to 'beat' Democratic Representative Gerry Connolly in the fall, and that supporting ObamaCare will 'pull him down,' is she not calling for the dragging death of the Congressman? And wouldn't this be comparable to the racist murder of James Byrd in Texas? Something that, I believe, former President George W. Bush supported?"
- Anchor David Shuster to contributor Richard Wolffe during the 10am ET hour of MSNBC Live, April 1. [Audio/video (0:21): Windows Media | MP3 audio]
And the Nobel Prize in Idiocy Goes to....
"You know, Keith, I really think Barack Obama could finish the year with not just one Nobel Prize, but three. This health care bill is bound to save literally millions of lives, and the legislative language itself is a masterpiece. Given the good sense of the Norwegians, I think the President could easily win the Nobels for medicine and literature this year."
- Newsweek's Howard Fineman to MSNBC's Keith Olbermann during live coverage of the health care bill signing, April 1.
Imagining "Giant, Empathetic Ears of Granite"
"Remember when right-wingers talked about putting Ronald Reagan's likeness on Mount Rushmore? Now with health care reform passed and conservatism in the dustbin of history, I propose the commemoration on Rushmore of none other than Barack Obama. Imagine a future Black Hills eagle, perched atop giant, empathetic ears of granite, approvingly surveying a land our 44th President did so much to heal."
- Eleanor Clift, April 1 Newsweek.
Chris Doesn't Want to Stop at First Base
MSNBC's Ed Schultz: "[Mississippi Governor] Haley Barbour is attacking the media for giving Obama a big wet kiss over health care. As if that's a bad thing!...I've said it before and I'll say it again, Chris, President Obama really does deserve a big wet kiss for this health care bill - from all 40 million Americans who are uninsured right now and stand to gain from this historic legislation."
Host Chris Matthews: "Well, I'd go a lot further than that, Ed, but a sloppy wet kiss is a good start."
- MSNBC's Hardball, April 1. [Audio/video (0:44): Windows Media | MP3 audio]
Obama Creates the Perfect Jobs Program
"Tonight on World News, Helping Hand. The President acts to get paychecks to thousands of young people caught in recession....For 50 years, the federal government has helped college students who want to make a difference overseas - the Peace Corps. Now, the Obama administration has unveiled a new plan to help young people here at home, by using up to $3 billion in re-paid TARP money to fund the Democrats' 2010 and 2012 campaigns, ensuring a living wage for thousands of youthful activists who are already signing up in droves."
- Diane Sawyer on the April 1 World News.
Scalded in Hot Tub of Their Own Bigotry
"In Hot Tub Time Machine, four old friends spend a drunken night of revelry in a ski resort hot tub and find themselves hurled back in time - back to Reagan's America - only to find that returning to the supposed good old days only makes their lives worse. Similarly, Tea Party activists, drunk on ideology and simmering in their own soothing bath of grievance, wished for an improbable return to that same blessed era, before such travesties as Internet porn or a black president. But as they learned last month, you can't stop history on the march...."
- New York Times critic A. O. Scott, April 1.
Amanpour Wants to Help "Ugly Drunk" America Sober Up
Host Howard Kurtz: "How will your experience as an international correspondent help you as you take over hosting ABC's This Week in August?"
CNN's Christiane Amanpour: "You learn a lot by hearing how others view America from outside the country. We tend to think of ourselves as on a shining white horse saving the day, but the rest of the world sees America's ugly side, like a drunken cowboy - second only to Israel in notoriety. So I hope to do for America some of what Barack Obama is doing - by being willing to level with the American people about our shortcomings."
- Exchange on CNN's Reliable Sources, April 1.
Rick Needs Help
"We're receiving word of an impromptu demonstration in San Francisco's Castro district. They're carrying flags with rainbow patterns on them. Do we know which political cause is being represented here?"
- CNN's Rick Sanchez on his Rick's List, April 1, asking his executive producer about a protest against California's Proposition 8, which ruled out same-sex marriage.
"I'm hearing that the latest CBO estimate is that the health care legislation will cost, approximately, $940 billion. Help out our audience - do we know how much that is in American money? Just a rough guess?"
- Sanchez to HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius a few minutes later on the same program.
Church in Your Palm Better than the Real Thing
Barack Obama: "I get a daily devotional on my BlackBerry, which only takes me a few seconds to read."
Matt Lauer: "One could quip, 'it's spirituality meets high-tech.' But, I think I can speak for a lot of Americans, Mr. President, when I say that in a time of such meanness and vitriol aimed at derailing your great efforts on so many fronts, it's very reassuring to hear you don't waste your time in church."
- From an interview at the White House aired on the April 1 Today show.
Let's Try to Remember Who Really Walks on Water
Newsweek editor Jon Meacham: "Now that he's gotten health care through, President Obama's approval rating is up five points, and this really could save his presidency. You know, it's fitting that this happened so close to Easter, the time of resurrection, and with John Boehner and Mitch McConnell trying to play the part of Pontius Pilate and Caiaphas."
Host Bill Maher: "Except I wouldn't want to insult Obama by comparing him to Jesus."
- Bill Maher on his Real Time HBO show, April 1. [Audio/video (0:27): Windows Media | MP3 audio]
Mrs. Smith Goes to Washington
"After making television history by having a colonoscopy live on the air, Harry Smith will now do it again by having a sex change operation live this morning. Harry is hoping to fully experience what it's like to be a woman in America's patriarchal society."
- CBS Early Show co-host Maggie Rodriguez opening the April 1 broadcast.
"The operation was a complete success and now here's Harry - I mean, Harriet - with some cooking tips."
- Rodriguez at the start of the program's 8:30am ET segment. [Audio/video (0:37): Windows Media | MP3 audio]
ABC's Salute to Mr. Objectivity
Co-host Robin Roberts: "The thing I like most about George Stephanopoulos is his infectious smile. George is never happier than when I pop in his dressing room and see him talking to his White House source, furiously scribbling notes."
Weatherman Sam Champion: "He is such an unflappable journalist. I remember walking into the shower room at the ABC gym. There was George and Rahm [Emanuel], naked, of course, and discussing the next day's GMA. And George says, 'Hey, Sam. Up for a tickle fight?' That is so George."
- ABC's Good Morning America, April 1, part of a series of features designed to make Stephanopoulos more likeable.
PAY CZAR for CBS NEWS: Katie Couric
CHIEF LIFE PANEL COUNSELOR: Keith Olbermann
DEMOCRATIC PARTY TALKING POINTS RECITER: David Shuster
SENIOR BOMBASTIC BLOWHARD: Ed Schultz
CHIEF USER of FAKE LIMBAUGH QUOTES: Rick Sanchez
LIAISON to the VICE PRESIDENT'S OFFICE: Claire Shipman