Appearance Alert!
Brent Bozell talks about MRC's "Worst of the Worst 2014" on FNC's Hannity, 10:30pm ET/PT

CyberAlert -- 02/25/2002 -- Pickering's Enemies Not Liberal

Printer Friendly Version

Pickering's Enemies Not Liberal; Clift: Gore "Should Have" Become President; CNN: Ted Kennedy "Roaring on Behalf of the Voiceless"

1) ABC's Carole Simpson made sure viewers realized Bush judicial nominee Charles Pickering is "conservative" and a man in a soundbite tagged him as a "right wing Republican," but she refused to apply an ideological label on his opponents. Instead, she euphemistically cited "a coalition of fifty civil rights, human rights and women's groups."

2) When Newsweek's Eleanor Clift mistakenly referred to how Al Gore assumed office after Bill Clinton, she confirmed on the McLaughlin Group that she thinks "it should have been the Gore administration."

3) ABC and CNN celebrated Ted Kennedy's 70th birthday. CNN's Candy Crowley gushed: "He is the last of the liberal lions, roaring on behalf of the voiceless." She admired how "has championed civil rights, pushed for improved education and better health care." Next, anchor Judy Woodruff cued him up to criticize Bush for not spending enough: "You're now criticizing the President for not putting as much money into education as you think should be there. Did the President let you down on this?"

4) As read by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Letterman's "Top Ten Ways I'll Improve New York City."


1

ABC anchor Carole Simpson was careful to label Charles Pickering, Bush's judicial nominee now being held up by Democrats on the Judiciary Committee, as a "conservative" and a man in a soundbite tagged him a "right wing Republican," but she refused to apply an ideological label on his opponents. Instead, she euphemistically cited "a coalition of fifty civil rights, human rights and women's groups."

Simpson began the February 24 World News Tonight/Sunday piece by showing a clip of Pickering before the Judiciary Committee as he insisted: "I have a record of standing up for equal protection, respecting the rule of law."
Simpson countered: "But critics of the conservative Republican strongly disagree. Among them, the NAACP."

After letting NAACP President Kweisi Mfume denounce Bush's nominee, for a seat on the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals, for "a lack of tolerance," Simpson recited the issues which upset his critics. Simpson then ran a soundbite of White House counsel Alberto Gonzalez who suggested the "people who know him best" in his hometown support him.
Simpson noted that Pickering is from Laurel, Mississippi "a hotbed of Ku Klux Klan activities in the 1950s and 60s," but she acknowledged that local blacks "respect" Pickering for testifying against a Klan leader accused of the firebombing murder of a civil rights leader.

Larry Thomas, a pharmacist, for instance, argued: "I still view Charles Pickering as a right wing Republican, but then on the other hand, I saw him open his arms to try and embrace change compatible to both races in south Mississippi."
Simpson avoided the liberal label: "But for a coalition of fifty civil rights, human rights and women's groups, that is not enough."
Kweisi Mfume of the NAACP: "While there are some people on the ground in Mississippi who say, well perhaps he's changed, perhaps he has, but I don't think we have the wherewithal and the freedom to run that risk because once the judge is there there's nothing that can remove him except death."

2

Newsweek's Eleanor Clift inadvertently confirmed on the McLaughlin Group that she thinks "it should have been the Gore administration" assuming office from Bill Clinton.

As usual, the McLaughlin Group over the weekend ended with panelists making predictions. Clift volunteered: "The GAO will finally issue its report on the White House, the vandalizing of the White House in between the Clinton and Gore administrations." Wincing, Clift immediately corrected herself: "Clinton and Bush administrations." Then, as the other panelists laughed, Clift added: "Well, it should have been the Gore administration."
John McLaughlin: "It's going to be a whitewash?"
Clift: "Neither side is going to be completely happy."

3

The media birthday cake for Ted Kennedy. ABC and CNN on Friday celebrated Kennedy's 70th birthday. ABC's Good Morning America brought aboard his son to pay tribute to him and on CNN's NewsNight Aaron Brown praised him as "one of the most powerful and hardest working Democrats of the past four decades."

On Inside Politics, Candy Crowley gushed: "He is the last of the liberal lions, roaring on behalf of the voiceless." More like roaring on behalf of expanding government control over people's lives and limiting their opportunities. She also admired how "he has championed civil rights, pushed for improved education and better health care."

Next, anchor Judy Woodruff cued him up to criticize Bush for not spending enough: "You're now criticizing the President for not putting as much money into education as you think should be there. Did the President let you down on this?" Sounding like a disappointed liberal, Woodruff worried: "Have you somehow unwittingly given the President a leg up and the Republicans, on this issue of education?"

-- ABC's Good Morning America, February 22. Diane Sawyer announced as noted by MRC analyst Jessica Anderson: "Well, from the time he was a child, we all watched, we all struck, we were struck by his courage, we all prayed and we all admired his character as Ted Kennedy Jr. battled cancer. He lost a leg to bone cancer when he was just 12, but from that time on, he has not only shown what you can do with spirit and life, he has become an advocate for the rights of others, for the rights of not only those who have disabilities, but cancer patients....But it's also the 70th birthday of somebody we know very well, Senator Ted Kennedy. Dad's 70 today?"
Ted Kennedy, Jr.: "That's right, yeah. Well you know, dad, if you're watching, you had an incredible impact on my life and happy birthday. I love you."
Sawyer: "Wow, that's all the present a dad needs."

-- CNN NewsNight anchor Aaron Brown squeezed this in before the end of the show: "Today a Kennedy turned 70. In a way, that statement in and of itself is worth thinking about. President Kennedy and Senator Robert Kennedy, Jack and Bobby, they died so young. They never aged in our memories. It was the little brother who would grow older, along with the rest of us, Senator Edward Kennedy. Easily, one of the most powerful and hardest working Democrats of the past four decades. And the one who's carried on the Kennedy name in all its complexity and controversy. He's been known to joke that he could run three more times and still not be as old as Strom Thurmond. Edward Kennedy at 70."

-- CNN's Inside Politics devoted an entire segment to celebrating the liberal Senator's birthday. Reporter Candy Crowley at least acknowledged his ideology as she gushed: "He is the last of the liberal lions, roaring on behalf of the voiceless."
Kennedy on the floor of the Senate: "We stand to protect the consumers and to protect the patients, to protect the children, protect the women, to protect the disabled in this country. That is what this is about."
Crowley continued her tribute: "The 30-year-old with nothing but a name to run on turned 70, as one of the premier legislators of the 20th century. His name may not be magic anymore, but his word is."
Senator Bill Frist, Republican of Tennessee: "He's liberal. I'm conservative. He's for more taxes, I'm for less taxes. He is a Democrat and I'm a Republican. But he's somebody who shoots straight, who you know where he's coming from. Who, when he gives you his word, he sticks by it a 100 percent."
Crowley oozed: "He has championed civil rights, pushed for improved education and better health care. His name is on hundreds, probably thousands, of bills."

Of course, conservatives would suggest his sycophantic loyalty to teacher unions has meant he has helped trap poor students in terrible schools.

Crowley then ran a soundbite from Senator Chris Dodd, Democrat of Connecticut: "Forget the bills. The bills, I know, are important. I don't mean to forget them. But none of that would ever have become law if it hadn't been for the passion that he brought to the commitments and those issues over the years, and sustains it year in and year out."
Crowley asserted: "He is an undiluted, undeterrable liberal, but a closet pragmatist. He prefers half a loaf to none, something to nothing, results over rhetoric. His alliances give fellow Democrats heartburn."
President George W. Bush: "I was so proud of our work, I even had nice things to say about my friend, Ted Kennedy."

Following Crowley's piece, CNN played a taped interview Judy Woodruff had conducted in the Massachusetts Senator's office. After asking him to name his greatest achievement (working on civil rights in the 1960s), she raised the education spending bill: "You worked very closely with the President to get an education bill done."
Kennedy: "Yes."
Woodruff: "You spent some time traveling around the country, touting the bill. Now we see in 2002 the President's budget. You're now criticizing the President for not putting as much money into education as you think should be there. Did the President let you down on this?"

Kennedy rejected her premise and argued it was a "good bill."

Woodruff followed up by contending that Kennedy was helping Republicans: "Well, in the aftermath of getting this education bill passed, polling that has been done of the American people, a number of polls done just last month, show people now favor the President over the congressional Democrats on the issue of education, by something like 2 to 1. You've got Democratic strategists out there, including some you know very well -- Bob Shrum, James Carville -- saying the public support for Bush and the Republicans on education is the biggest threat to the Democrats regaining control of the House and maintaining and strengthening control of the Senate. I guess my question is, have you somehow unwittingly given the President a leg up and the Republicans, on this issue of education?"

That same night, Friday, FNC's The O'Reilly Factor also featured a segment about Ted Kennedy prompted by his birthday, but FNC offered two sides: a Kennedy author praising him and criticism from Rich Lowry, Editor of National Review. Lowry suggested, for instance, that Kennedy should be reprimanded for something not even hinted at by CNN: Accelerating personal destruction in politics by inventing "Borking" when he deliberately distorted Robert Bork's record.

4

From the February 20 Late Show with David Letterman (http://www.cbs.com/latenight/lateshow/), as read by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, the "Top Ten Ways I'll Improve New York City."

10. I'll personally pay every New Yorker's rent for the next four years
9. Get caught jaywalking and we'll impound your shoes
8. Once a week a different New Yorker has to mow Central Park
7. Subway cars now equipped with a complimentary all-you-can-eat soup and salad bar
6. Every weekend bare-knuckle boxing matches on front lawn of Gracie Mansion
5. Free full-body massages from your cabbie
4. I'm renaming the city "Funkytown"
3. Mandatory ten o'clock curfew for Bill Clinton
2. If a car alarm goes off, call me and I'll personally come and tow it
1. Okay, Arizona, you had your fun -- now we're coming to get our World Series trophy

On #3, is that 10pm or 10am? -- Brent Baker


>>> Support the MRC, an educational foundation dependent upon contributions which make CyberAlert possible, by providing a tax-deductible donation. Use the secure donations page set up for CyberAlert readers and subscribers:
http://www.mrc.org/donate

>>>To subscribe to CyberAlert, send a blank e-mail to: mrccyberalert-subscribe
@topica.com
. Or, you can go to: http://www.mrc.org/newsletters. Either way you will receive a confirmation message titled: "RESPONSE REQUIRED: Confirm your subscription to mrccyberalert@topica.com." After you reply, either by going to the listed Web page link or by simply hitting reply, you will receive a message confirming that you have been added to the MRC CyberAlert list. If you confirm by using the Web page link you will be given a chance to "register" with Topica. You DO NOT have to do this; at that point you are already subscribed to CyberAlert.
To unsubscribe, send a blank e-mail to: cybercomment@mrc.org.
Send problems and comments to: cybercomment@mrc.org.

>>>You can learn what has been posted each day on the MRC's Web site by subscribing to the "MRC Web Site News" distributed every weekday afternoon. To subscribe, send a blank e-mail to: cybercomment@mrc.org. Or, go to: http://www.mrc.org/newsletters.<<<