NBC's David Gregory isn't always a news reporter. As we're seeing with increasing frequency on that network, he's squashing stories. Call him an unreporter. On Sunday's "Meet the Press," he showed the extent to which he'll vaporize any suggestion that Team Obama failed to offer adequate protection from terrorists at our consulate in Benghazi.
Businesswoman Carly Fiorina slammed Obama's Libya response: "That attack went on for seven hours...[with the] Secretary of Defense saying he denied requests for help over that seven hours." Gregory cut her off: "We'll get to Libya a little bit later." Surprise: It never came up again.
It sounded a lot like 1999, when Gregory squashed RNC spokesman Cliff May on MSNBC as he tried to mention Juanita Broaddrick's rape charges against Bill Clinton. Or the obsequious 2008 moment when then-CNN anchor John Roberts promised Obama in an interview he would create a "Reverend Wright-Free Zone."
Too many in the "news" media think of themselves as a deputized PR Secret Service for Obama, just as they did for Clinton. They reject the concept of nonpartisanship. In their view, one side is credible, the other not. Why balance social service with greed? Tolerance with hate? Justice with oppression? There is right, and there is wrong, and there ought not to be a middle ground in enlightened journalism. There is only the light of truth.
It follows that they use their influence to protect the White House, to preserve the president's "political viability within the system," as they say. If, God forbid, Republicans win the presidency, these same "journalists" are justified in brawling and mauling to derail the GOP agenda. In fact, they're called to do so. It is, after all, the public's Right to Know.
Look across the Sunday shows that aired on the networks with nine days to go in the campaign. On most, there was a total avoidance of any scrutiny for Obama.
On ABC's "This Week," Newt Gingrich noted Defense Secretary Leon Panetta's refusal to send assistance to Benghazi and ripped into Obama: "He's canceling trips over the hurricane. He did not cancel his trips over Benghazi." George Stephanopoulos moved on to another campaign question.
On CBS's "Face the Nation," Bob Schieffer asked John McCain about the hurricane, and which party might get hurt by it. McCain squeezed in Libya in his answer: "This tragedy turned into a debacle, and massive cover-up or massive incompetence in Libya is having an effect on the voter because of their view of the commander-in-chief. And it is now the worst cover-up or incompetence that I have ever observed in my life." Schieffer moved on.
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