Karl condescendingly summarized, "Newt Gingrich with loads of political and personal baggage and Tim Pawlenty, struggling to convince people he's not too boring." (It's worth remembering that the Democrats' 2008 choices included Dennis Kucinich and John Edwards. Yet, journalists weren't so quick to dismiss them.)
Karl has a habit of inserting his liberal spin into stories. On March 24, 2010 , he knocked Michele Bachmann as the "most controversial. On August 24, 2010, he hit then Republican candidate Joe Miller as a "hard-line" conservative.
A transcript of the May 16 segment, which aired at 7:13am, follows:
GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS: Now to presidential politics. Lots of developments over the weekend as the Republican field is taking its final shape. Mike Huckabee announced Saturday he would not run. Donald Trump expected to signal later today whether he's more committed to the Celebrity Apprentice or the presidential campaign trail. And the candidates who are in are criss-crossing the key states of Iowa and New Hampshire and South Carolina. Jon Karl has a lot more on all this. Jon?
JON KARL: Good morning, Jon. Well, Huckabee's decision takes a big-name Republican out of the running and leaves Republicans exactly where they have been, without a clear choice to take on Barack Obama. Mike Huckabee would have been a front-runner. But-
MIKE HUCKABEE: All the factors say go. But my heart says no. And that's the decision that I have made.
KARL: Huckabee won the Iowa caucuses and came in second overall to John McCain in 2008 and was at or near the top of the poll this is time around. His decision leaves a Republican field crowded with candidates and problems. There's Mitt Romney. Conservatives hate his Massachusetts health care plan almost as much as they hate Obama's. Newt Gingrich with loads of political and personal baggage. And Tim Pawlenty, struggling to convince people he's not too boring. Then, there's the wild cards. But, will they run? Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels could be a force. The Harley-riding budget hawk has Tea Party appeal. He says he'll decide closer to Memorial Day. And today, we'll get a hint about Donald Trump's intentions.
DONALD TRUMP: You're fired. Go.
KARL: His popular reality show is slated for another season. But, today we'll find out if he's out as star of the program, freeing him up to run. Former ambassador to China and Governor John Huntsman heads to New Hampshire this week and is already looking like a candidate. And what about Sarah Palin? She recently hired a new foreign policy adviser. Is that a sign she's running? And New Jersey's straight-talking governor Chris Christie?
CHRIS CHRISTIE: No, I'm not running for president.
KARL: Some prominent Republicans are still refusing to accept no for an answer and say there's a chance that he'll jump in. As for Mitch Daniels, it's looking more and more like he's like he's in. Late last night, two top Republicans told me that they believe he's running.
STEPHANOPOULOS: Okay, Jon. Thanks very much. The big hurdle there was, of course, his family.