LIBERAL DREAM TEAM – WHY NO CONSERVATIVES?
There’s an old saying that’s applicable here: Diplomacy is the art of letting someone else have your way. My only question is this: Did the Republicans say “thank you” – after bending over and agreeing to what amounts to a liberal Dream Team – Jim Lehrer, Bob Schieffer and Candy Crowley – being selected as the only moderators of the upcoming presidential debates?
Too add insult to injury, the lone vice presidential debate will be moderated by ABC’s Martha Raddatz. A bit of dot-connecting is in order: Raddatz is ABC’s senior foreign affairs correspondent. While it’s hard to admit (without having been water-boarded) that Biden has a strength in anything - if he does, it’s foreign affairs. Wow – we did that with two dots.
Back to the Dream Team:
Jim Lehrer was the long-time anchor of PBS NewsHour. Need I say more? Lehrer claims (with a straight face) to have been “unbiased” during his questioning of presidential candidates in past debates, saying: “I am bias-free. Bias is what people who hear or read the news bring to the story, not what the journalist brings to the reporting.” This, of course, is ridiculous. The insidiousness of liberal bias does not manifest itself solely in the form of idiotic outbursts from the likes of Rachel Maddow, Ed Schultz or Chris “Tingles” Matthews. Often, the bias is very subtle – as in the way a question is framed or whether follow-up questions are asked. “Do you still beat your wife?” comes to mind – not to mention, letting candidates off the hook when they fail to answer questions.
In 2000, Lehrer moderated all three presidential debates. In the third one – a town hall debate – he approved mostly liberal questions from the “uncommitted” audience: Eight questions came from the left, only two could be counted as conservative, and five were requests for information without an ideological tone. Here’s one of the questions Lehrer chose for George Bush:
“You seemed to overly enjoy, as a matter of fact seem proud that Texas led the nation in execution of prisoners. Sir, did I misread your response, and are you really, really proud of the fact that Texas is number one in executions?” (Love the “really, really” part of that.)
In 2004, Lehrer asked John Kerry these set-up questions:
“Speaking of Vietnam, you spoke to Congress in 1971 – after you came back from Vietnam, and you said, quote: ‘How do you ask a man to be the last man to die for a mistake?’ Are Americans now dying in Iraq for a mistake?”
“What colossal misjudgments, in your opinion, has President Bush made?”
Moreover, Lehrer failed to ask Kerry about his mixed votes on Iraq, the Swift Boat charges or about his claiming before the Senate in 1971 that U.S. soldiers slaughtered and tortured Vietnamese civilians. Yeah, Jim – bias only exists in the mind of the listener.
Candy Crowley is CNN’s Chief Political Correspondent. To be fair, Crowley does have an ability to questions both sides in an aggressive manner, but let’s get real here. As Brent Bozell of Media Resource Center observed: “She’s going to be drinking the CNN Kool-Aid, and they’re the ones who are going to prepare the questions for her. So it’s going to be predictable.”
During the liberal feeding fest that began a nanosecond after Romney announced Ryan as his running mate, Crowley offered up this assessment:
“Some Republicans,” (unnamed, of course) “think this looks a little bit like some sort of ticket death wish.” Not a hint of bias there, huh?
Incidentally, this technique is a common tactic employed by liberals: Pretend to have a source who has expressed a concern (or in the case of Harry Reid, told him Romney hadn’t paid taxes for ten years) just so they can express an opinion, make a baseless charge, or inject yet another talking point into the debate – as in “ticket death wish.”
Additionally, Crowley has a long history of supporting Affirmative Action. Will this bias find its way into a question for Barack Obama? Bets accepted.
Bob Schieffer, host of CBS’s Face the Nation, like Lehrer, denies (also with a straight face) that bias exists in the media. However, during an interview with Romney and Ryan following the veep announcement, the “unbiased” Schieffer asked Ryan:
“Do you think Mitt Romney been too defensive about Bain Capital?”
Here he was on Monday’s CBS This Morning, fear mongering over Ryan’s budget plan:
“There’s some really tough stuff in there. I mean, he really slashes into social programs - it’s across the board – in order to try to get this budget back into balance.”
This statement is patently false; Ryan’s proposal actually increases spending, but at a lower rate than does Obama’s plan.
To be fair, Schieffer ended the segment with this:
“This is no longer a campaign about negative campaign ads. This is a campaign about two very different visions for America. I mean, the campaign is now going to be about something, and I think that’s probably a good thing for the country.”
While Schieffer was right in his observation, what he didn’t say was this: “Now that the focus has been shifted to “different visions for America,” it’ll give us a chance to promote Obama’s vision – even if we have to do it subtly.”
Come to think of it; the Moe, Larry and Curly – with a Laurel and Hardy or two thrown in – are the Republicans who didn’t object to the Dream Team’s stranglehold on the most crucial presidential debates we will have witnessed in a generation.