Pick a Conservative and Get a “Goldwater Moment” in 2016
“You’re starting to get a picture of what 2016 could look like, what Iowa could look like, specifically. And it’s pretty darn fascinating. We’re starting to see here, guys, the fault lines of the battle for the soul of the GOP. Is it going to be a pragmatic governor in the Chris Christie form? Maybe if Jeb Bush gets involved, or maybe the Paul Ryan idea, Rubio. Or are we going Ted Cruz, are we going Rand Paul, and the GOP is going to have their 2016 Barry Goldwater moment? So, we shall see.”
— MSNBC’s Luke Russert on The Cycle, March 6.
Name of the Game for GOP: “Obstructionism” and “Toxic” Dialogue
“What is your message to your party? Because even since from the time that you were there, obstructionism is just the name of the game for the Republican Party right now. And, obviously, that’s not leading to any meaningful progress. The dialogue is so toxic, because that’s all they have is the talk now, because they’re not doing anything.”
— Co-anchor Chris Cuomo to former South Carolina Senator and Heritage Foundation President Jim DeMint on CNN’s New Day, March 4.
Slamming Sarah Palin: A “Moron” and an “Ignorant, Two-Wheeled Bilewagon”
MSNBC’s Mike Barnicle: “I have a question. The word ‘conservative’ can mean many things. I mean, there’s many definitions to it, but what does it say about a group, CPAC, where the most popular speaker they had, and the one who received the most rousing reception, is a moron, Sarah Palin? I mean, she received a reception at that group that took the roof off the place. Sophomoric, nearly libelous, not amusing. What does it say about that group?”...
Co-host Joe Scarborough: “Barnicle, you need to lighten up. The kids are just having fun, okay?”
Co-host Mika Brzezinski: “A moron? A multi-million dollar moron selling a message.”
— MSNBC’s Morning Joe, March 10.
“[Senator John] McCain should pay a heavy price for unleashing this ignorant, two-wheeled bilewagon on the country’s politics. If you think she’s a legitimate political leader, you’re an idiot and a sucker and I feel sorry for you....She is the living representation of the infantilization of American politics, a poisonous Grimm Sister telling toxic fairy tales to audiences drunk on fear, and hate and nonsense....It was the address of a malignant child delivered to an audience of malignant children. If you applauded, you’re an idiot and I feel sorry for you.”
— Esquire’s Charles Pierce in a March 8 blog post about Palin’s CPAC speech.
Matthews Mocks CPAC: A “Crazy Room” and “Tapestry of Weirdness”
“Do you remember the bar scene in Star Wars, with all those wild-eyed creatures from every part of the solar system? Well, today here in Washington the whole tapestry of weirdness was reenacted at the annual convention of something called CPAC, the Conservative Political Action Committee [sic]....”
“The leader of the ‘let’s torch this place’ pack today was Ted Cruz, the Joe McCarthy imitator who belted out a plan to kill the IRS, a plan which the crowd applauded wildly, unaware of the small detail that Ted’s plan would kill the very system of tax write-offs that finances happenings like this CPAC convention in the first place. It turns out, as I said, that just about every organization in that crazy room today — the Tea Party Patriots, the NRA, the Heritage Foundation, Americans for Prosperity, the American Conservative Union, et cetera, et cetera — all benefit from the tax write-offs and exemptions courtesy of today’s IRS system [that] the brilliant Ted Cruz promised those blithely unknowing folks that he would simply abolish.”
— Host Chris Matthews on MSNBC’s Hardball, March 6.
“Complex” Democrats vs. Angry, Hateful Republicans
“It’s no joke going out there as a Democrat this year, no joke at all. People are angry. They’re looking for places to show they’re angry, looking for somewhere to blast away at the way things are....And why is it hard for Democrats to fight that? Well, for one thing, Democrats generally can see the complexity of our times....The Republicans — well, you don’t really have to think much if you’re just ticked off, do you? All you have to do is go to your base and go back to cutting government spending, attacking health care, hating the President and guarding your values.”
— Host Chris Matthews on MSNBC’s Hardball, March 12, talking about the loss of pro-ObamaCare Democratic congressional candidate Alex Sink in Florida’s special election.
Blame Democrat’s Loss on Anti-ObamaCare “Myths”
“Republican David Jolly has won the first congressional race of 2014, and with that result from Florida’s special election in the 13th district, Democrats got a small electoral snapshot of what ObamaCare might mean for them in the midterms, and most importantly whether the reality on the ground is established enough to beat back the myths on the airwaves.”
— MSNBC’s Chris Hayes on All In, March 11.
Claims of “ObamaCare Horror Stories” Just Fabricated Ignorance
“[Robert] Proctor, a professor of the history of science at Stanford, is one of the world’s leading experts in agnotology, a neologism signifying the study of the cultural production of ignorance. It’s a rich field, especially today when whole industries devote themselves to sowing public misinformation and doubt about their products and activities....All those fabricated ObamaCare horror stories wholesaled by Republican and conservative opponents of the Affordable Care Act and their aiders and abetters in the right-wing press? Their purpose is to sow doubt about the entire project of healthcare reform; if the aim were to identify specific shortcomings of the act, they’d have to accompany every story with a proposal about how to fix it.”
— Los Angeles Times columnist and former financial correspondent Michael Hiltzik, March 9.
TV Anchors Applaud Obama’s Pitch to Save ObamaCare
“Next, a bold move on the battle over ObamaCare. Even if you’re President of the United States, when you want the attention of young Americans, you put your dignity on the line and go where they laugh. Tonight, the impudent Web site ‘Funny or Die’ has recruited thousands of people to check out ObamaCare, all because the President sat down with the funny guy from The Hangover.”
— Diane Sawyer on ABC’s World News, March 11, talking about Obama’s appearance on a Web comedy show.
“It’s over six minutes long...all of it is really, really funny....You know, the First Lady’s been everywhere showing her comedy chops and it’s been great. But, boy, the President, he is amazing in this. So check that out this morning if you have time.”
— NBC’s Carson Daly on Today, March 11.
Co-host Charlie Rose: “This morning, President Obama is having better luck online than he did after the health care rollout. His appearance Tuesday with comedian Zach Galifianakis now has 11 million Web views....Barry Goldwater once said you have to go hunting where the ducks are, and the young people watch this show.”
Co-host Gayle King: “That’s right. And humor works. Bravo to Zach and bravo to the President. That was very funny stuff.”
— CBS This Morning, March 12.
Cuomo’s Wrong-Headed Critique of GOP Victory Rally
“We’re watching the video there of the guy [Florida Republican congressional candidate David Jolly] celebrating the win, and the song is called ‘Sixth Finger Tune.’ It is the theme song from The Price Is Right....What a metaphor for what politics has become — that they are playing the theme song of The Price Is Right....When they celebrate a victory, because it’s about the money! It makes me sick.”
— Co-host Chris Cuomo on CNN’s New Day, March 12. In fact, The Price Is Right theme was played as a salute to longtime host Bob Barker, who had endorsed Jolly.
Hillary Clinton, a Rock Star Like Bono
“Navigating through a buttoned-down sea of Brooks Brothers and Talbots as she made her way to the podium, Hillary was surrounded by applause, and by groupielike bureaucrats waving camera-phones. It was a historic moment, at least in the world of State…If her debut was a rock concert, Hillary was Bono — a bona fide international celebrity, with credibility as a crusader for the disadvantaged. In that regard, she was one of a kind.”
— From the book HRC co-written by Bloomberg News reporter Jonathan Allen and The Hill’s Amie Parnes.
Putin’s Crimea Grab = Toppling Mass Murderer Saddam?
“Is it just me, or does the rhetoric about the crisis in Ukraine sound as if all of Washington is suffering from amnesia? We’re supposed to be shocked — shocked! — that a great military power would cook up a pretext to invade a smaller, weaker nation? I’m sorry, but has everyone forgotten the unfortunate events in Iraq a few years ago?...The United States, frankly, has limited standing to insist on absolute respect for the territorial integrity of sovereign states. Before Iraq there was Afghanistan, there was the Persian Gulf War, there was Panama, there was Grenada. And even as we condemn Moscow for its outrageous aggression, we reserve the right to fire deadly missiles into Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia and who knows where else.”
— Washington Post columnist Eugene Robinson, March 4.
“The United States also does not have the leverage it wants in historical terms. Invading countries is something the United States knows about from really raw experience. And Russia knows that and asserts that day in and day out on Russian television all the time. That’s a cost, too.”
— New Yorker magazine editor and former Washington Post Moscow correspondent David Remnick talking about the Ukraine crisis on NBC’s Today, March 3.
ABC Newsers Appalled by Pro-American TV Ad
Clip from a Cadillac ad: “Other countries, they work, they stroll home, they stop by the café, they take August off. Off! Why aren’t you like that? Why aren’t we like that? Because we’re crazy, driven, hard-working believers, that’s why.”...
Co-host George Stephanopoulos: “That was the first time you saw that?”
Co-host Robin Roberts: “Because I was actually at the Oscars, so I didn’t see the commercials. But, oh, my goodness! And what’s wrong with taking more than two weeks off?”
News reader Josh Elliott: “Not a thing.”
Roberts: “But that is — you’re made to feel guilty because you’re not working hard. That’s ridiculous!”
Elliott: “I agree.”
Reporter Amy Robach: “It’s bragging rights in this country to say you didn’t take your vacation days? Sad.”
Stephanopoulos: “I laughed, but I hated myself for it.”
— Discussion on ABC’s Good Morning America, March 6.
Imagine If Fox News Suggested Obama Could Call Kenya “Home”
Host Ronan Farrow: “So, we’ve heard about President Obama’s poll numbers in the United States, including those pretty dim assessments of his handling of the rest of the world. But out in the wide world, there is one place he can always call home, if they have anything to do with it. Take a look.”
Unidentified Kenyan man: “Obama is our son from Kenya. We love him.”
— MSNBC’s Ronan Farrow Daily, March 12.
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PUBLISHER: L. Brent Bozell III
EDITORS: Brent H. Baker, Rich Noyes, Tim Graham
DEPUTY RESEARCH DIRECTOR: Geoffrey Dickens
NEWS ANALYSTS: Scott Whitlock, Kyle Drennen, Matthew Balan, Matt Hadro and Jeffrey Meyer
INTERN: Paul Bremmer