Distorting Palin’s “Holy War”
ABC’s Charles Gibson: “You said recently, in your old church, ‘Our national leaders are sending U.S. soldiers on a task that is from God.’...Are we fighting a holy war?”
Sarah Palin: “The reference there is a repeat of Abraham Lincoln’s words when he said...‘Let us not pray that God is on our side,’ in a war or any other time, ‘but let us pray that we are on God’s side.’ That’s what that comment was all about, Charlie....”
Gibson: “But you went on and said, ‘There is a plan and it is God’s plan.’...Are you sending your son on a task that is from God?”
— Excerpt from an interview with Palin shown on ABC’s World News, September 11.
“Pray for our military men and women who are striving to do what is right. Also, for this country, that our leaders, our national leaders, are sending them out on a task that is from God. That’s what we have to make sure that we’re praying for: That there is a plan and that that plan is God’s plan. So bless them with your prayers, your prayers of protection over our soldiers.”
— Palin’s actual comments delivered at the Wasilla Assembly of God church, June 8, 2008.
Urging Obama to Fight Back
“Over the past few weeks, the McCain campaign has really gotten down and dirty. A lot of their ads have been flat-out lies, and Obama needs to really take the steering wheel back.”
— Newsweek reporter Suzanne Smalley at approximately 12:55pm EDT September 12 on MSNBC News Live.
CBS’s Dean Reynolds: “After a drum roll of promises that Obama would now toughen his approach, the audience here was clearly expecting more than this.”
Barack Obama: “I just have a different philosophy, and that is that I’m going to respond with the truth. [Audience applauds.] I’m going to respond with the truth.”
Reynolds: “They applauded, but what bothers many Democrats is what happened next: The audience literally coaxing a word from him that baldly describes what many think of the McCain camp’s tactics.”
Obama: “You have ads that are based, are just fabricated. They’re just made up. And-”
Man in audience: “Lies!”
Obama: “Lies, that’s the word I was looking for.”
— CBS Evening News, September 12.
Nasty, Ugly Republicans
“[It was] the toughest of the last two weeks. Far and away the toughest speech we’ve seen so far....What I wonder about is how it came across on television. A little too nasty? A little too ugly? I don’t know.”
— ABC’s George Stephanopoulos moments after Rudy Giuliani’s speech to the Republican convention, September 3.
“I thought, very smug, very sarcastic, very cutting. And you know what? The Republicans had been trying to portray her as a victim for the last couple days. Well, she’s not going to be a victim anymore. She’s going to be a target.”
— CNN legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin after Sarah Palin’s speech to the Republican convention, September 3.
Decrying GOP’s New “Bullwhip”
“There’s a phrase I wonder about, ‘community organizers.’...Is this the new ‘welfare queen?’ Is this a new symbol, that we’re talking about here?...I think what they’re getting is urban, downtown, trouble, tough neighborhoods. ‘Community organizer’ is not a winning phrase for a place like Scranton....It seems to me that the use of the word, ‘community organizer,’ is almost like a bullwhip.... Are they saying that, that Barack Obama is Al Sharpton? Is that what they’re saying?”
— MSNBC’s Chris Matthews to various guests on Hardball, September 8.
Those “Hard Right” Republicans
“The abortion platform here is pretty hard right when it comes to the abortion question — with which you have some disagreement, I think, with the party still.”
— NBC’s David Gregory to ex-New Jersey Governor Christie Todd Whitman, MSNBC convention coverage, September 2.
“Bottom line here, they are going hard right on abortion rights.”
— MSNBC’s Chris Matthews during his network’s live coverage of the GOP convention, September 2.
She’s a “Wacko Right-Winger”
“If [Bobby] Jindal had been governor of Louisiana in 2005 [during Hurricane Katrina], everything would have been different, and he would be John McCain’s running mate instead of this wacko right-winger.”
— Co-host Mort Kondracke talking about Sarah Palin on FNC’s The Beltway Boys, September 6.
Olbermann’s 9/11 Meltdown
“I’m sorry it’s necessary to say this, and I wanted to separate myself from the others on the air about this. If at this late date, any television network had of its own accord showed that much videotape, and that much graphic videotape of 9/11, and I speak as somebody who lost a few friends there, it, we, would be rightly eviscerated at all quarters, perhaps by the Republican Party itself, for exploiting the memories of the dead and perhaps even for trying to evoke that pain again. If you reacted to that videotape the way I did, I apologize. It is a subject of great pain for many of us still and was probably not appropriate to be shown.”
— MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann on September 4 after his network aired a less than three minute 9/11 tribute video during the GOP convention. A week later, MSNBC aired more than three hours of news coverage as it originally aired on NBC back on the morning of September 11, 2001.
“Sniggering” At Mrs. Palin
“Before Gov. Sarah Palin came flying in from the wilds of Alaska for the Republican convention in St. Paul, there was a lot of sniggering in media rooms and satellite trucks about her beauty queen looks and rustic hobbies, and the suggestion that she was better suited to be a calendar model for a local auto body shop than a holder of the second-highest office in the land....In the press galleries at the convention, journalists wrinkled their noses in disgust when Piper, Ms. Palin’s youngest daughter, was filmed kitty-licking her baby brother’s hair into place.”
— New York Times media writer David Carr, Sept. 7.
Palin the Nutty Extremist
Anchor Campbell Brown: “Her [Sarah Palin’s] view is that global warming is not man-made. Now, that is different from what John McCain believes and different from even President Bush, who’s come around in this issue.”
CNN’s Jeffrey Toobin: “It’s a very extreme view....The view of global warming reflects an extreme outside-the-mainstream view that John McCain doesn’t share and, frankly, no respectable scientist shares.”
— CNN’s 8pm EDT Election Center, September 9.
Plus, She Hates Polar Bears
“You know, the one thing that I don’t think anybody’s said yet is that she’s very mean to animals, this woman. Why does she have it in for these poor polar bear and the caribou and she aerial kills wolves? That’s a very mean thing to do. I think that that’s an important point.”
— ABC The View co-host Joy Behar explaining her opposition to Sarah Palin, CNN’s Larry King Live, September 9.
Barack Obama Scrutinized? Ha!
Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani: “Why did Barack Obama get a pass on his experience? And why is Sarah Palin’s experience, which from the executive point of view is considerably more than Barack Obama’s, under such scrutiny?”
CNN’s Wolf Blitzer: “But who says he’s been getting a pass? He’s been scrutinized for months and months and months.”
Giuliani, laughing: “I haven’t seen the scrutiny of his experience or his record.”
Blitzer: “Do you read your hometown newspaper, the New York Times?”
Giuliani: “I do....Maybe that’s the problem. I read the New York Times and I haven’t seen much scrutiny of Barack Obama.”
— Exchange during CNN’s convention coverage, September 2.
He’s No “Showcase Appointment”
“It’s important to point out, as we have not so far, Barack Obama was not given this nomination, he won it. He was not offered a nice title like Secretary of State, like Condoleezza Rice got from the Republicans. He was not offered the title of Chairman of the Joint Chiefs as Colin Powell was, or Secretary of State. He won the nomination of a Democratic Party voting together. He defeated all other opponents and took the prize....He is not some popular appointment or a showcase appointment.”
— MSNBC’s Chris Matthews during live coverage before Barack Obama’s convention speech, August 28.
Who Gets Shafted If She Wins?
“If Sarah Palin becomes Vice President, will she be shortchanging her kids or will she be shortchanging the country?”
— NBC reporter Amy Robach on Today, September 3.
Another Loopy Conspiracy Theory
“I’m not that convinced that that’s her baby....The daughter — who we know is fertile because she’s knocked up again, or maybe for the first time...she did like take a five-month leave from high school because she had [uses fingers to indicate quote marks] ‘mononucleosis’ right around the time the baby was being born. And the mother, the so-called, you know, okay, maybe it is the mother, but, you know, she was back to work three days later. You don’t smell something?...It’s not like they’re not willing to lie about everything else.”
— HBO’s Bill Maher on Real Time, September 5, promoting the left-wing conspiracy theory that Sarah Palin’s infant son is actually her daughter Bristol’s baby.
PUBLISHER: L. Brent Bozell III
EDITORS: Brent H. Baker, Rich Noyes, Tim Graham
MEDIA ANALYSTS: Geoffrey Dickens, Brad Wilmouth, Scott Whitlock, Matthew Balan, Kyle Drennen and Justin McCarthy
RESEARCH ASSOCIATE: Michelle Humphrey
INTERN: Lyndsi Thomas