Anti-Trump media manages to spin electoral victories into defeats
By Dan Gainor
Candidates supported by President Trump did well in a special congressional election in Ohio and in primaries Tuesday, although some races remained too close to call. But the anti-Trump media did their best to paint the outcome of the voting as bad news for the president.
Journalists worked hard to spin a pro-Democratic narrative before the voting. For example, CNN anchor Don Lemon said Republicans are "people who will lie, steal, and cheat, lie to their mother, lie to themselves about what's right of this country, about truth and facts." Neutral objective journalism, right?
Journalists also talked a lot about a "blue wave" and "a major sign of trouble for Republicans" before the votes were counted. Politico wrote of "Democrats surging." Sort of like what they predicted back in 2016 when they said President Hillary Clinton would be occupying the Oval Office in January 2017.
They were wrong this time, too.
That didn't stop the typical spin. CNBC's John Harwood used Twitter to say winning was a sign the GOP was going to lose in November. He retweeted a comment saying, "it's hard to remember when so many victories were such a bad omen going into November." Harwood even claimed the "GOP has a corruption problem in mid-term elections."
Election season makes people say stupid things. That's why Democratic socialist media darling Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez compared a request that she debate to "catcalling." The Daily Wire's Ben Shapiro made the invitation and even offered to pay $10,000 to her campaign or a charity of her choosing.
The result was just the latest public relations disaster for the lefty candidate. (You know it's a bad move when even The New York Times makes you look bad for your comment.)
Incredibly, Washington Post media columnist Margaret Sullivan gave a one word support of Ocasio-Cortez, writing simply: "Preach." Apparently, even asking a liberal millennial woman to debate is now a #MeToo moment.
One final point about the media's post-election distortions. It's widely known and little reported (now) that midterms are typically bad for the party in power. Here's NPR back in 2014 explaining: "History tells us that midterm elections are bad - sometimes very bad - for the party that controls the White House."
So, yes, the rules say the GOP is supposed to lose seats in Congress in November. But journalists want to treat the voting as a referendum on President Trump and not politics as usual. It's almost like they're whistling past the graveyard of their predictions. Maybe that's why Don Lemon is now thanking politicians who even watch CNN.
2. Are They Press or Suppress? Imagine the news coverage if the son of a popular evangelical pastor was arrested for training children to be school shooters in an underground desert compound. Imagine what would happen if the remains of a dead child were also found at the site. And envision that the father had been an unindicted co-conspirator in a terrorist trial.
Journalists would turn it into the crime of the century. With good reason.
Only that wasn't the story. One of the people arrested was the son of Brooklyn Imam Siraj Wahhaj, "an unindicted co-conspirator in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing," according to The New York Post. The Islamic connection was so uncomfortable for the press that ABC and CBS censored it entirely for two straight nights.
CNN tried the same lack of disclosure. "CNN, for example, did not mention the words 'Muslim' or 'extremist' in a Tuesday article about the discovery of the 11 missing children, wrote The Daily Caller's Amber Athey
CNN also got flamed by Twitchy for not referring to occupants of the compound as "extremist of the Muslim belief.'" That reference was actually removed from a story.
3. Journalists Are Neutral? The news media now face more allegations of liberal bias than ever before. Naturally, journalists want to fend off that criticism, especially from President Trump, with calm, rational journalism.
Marjorie Pritchard, deputy managing editor for the editorial page of The Boston Globe, got commitments from 70 different newspaper editorial pages to do what they would do anyhow - attack President Trump.
"The newspaper's request was being promoted by industry groups such as the American Society of News Editors and regional groups like the New England Newspaper and Press Association," according to The Associated Press.
And the proposal "suggested editorial boards take a common stand against Trump's words regardless of their politics." Because fighting the president of one political party isn't "politics," apparently.
4. NBC? Them, too: So much for NBC clearing NBC of sexual misconduct allegations. Mediaite is reporting that NBC has another firestorm getting ready to strike - this one courtesy of the Daily Beast.
Here's the Mediaite take: "The story involves varying allegations against senior NBC News executives, and relates to alleged misconduct from years ago as well as more current allegations against network brass. One source told Mediaite that executives at NBC News are 'panicked' by the reporting. NBC News did not provide comment."
On its own, that might be bad. But context matters and NBC has been embarrassed by #MeToo revelations. Think back to the Variety report that cost "Today" host Matt Lauer his high-paying network job.
Variety reported: "As the co-host of NBC's 'Today,' Matt Lauer once gave a colleague a sex toy as a present. It included an explicit note about how he wanted to use it on her, which left her mortified."
That story got worse: "On another day, he summoned a different female employee to his office, and then dropped his pants, showing her his penis. After the employee declined to do anything, visibly shaken, he reprimanded her for not engaging in a sexual act."
The Peacock Network also passed on the sexual misconduct investigation by contributor Ronan Farrow that has had extensive impact throughout the industry. NBC also dropped the contract of political analyst Mark Halperin after sexual misconduct allegations against him surfaced.
Media outlets like Esquire continue to dig through the disastrous way NBC has handled such situations. These latest claims could further undermine the network's waning credibility.