Republicans have been almost universally blamed for the government shutdown in melodramatic reports from the White House, amplified by a sympathetic liberal media. The press, however, literally teed up the blame game many days ago.
A new Media Research Center analysis of broadcast news coverage shows that ABC, CBS and NBC spent the two weeks before the actual shutdown carefully positioning congressional Republicans — especially conservatives and tea party folk — for one whack after another.
“By the time the shutdown actually took place on Tuesday, news audiences had been repeatedly instructed to think about it as a GOP-generated crisis,” says Rich Noyes, research director for the Media Research Center.
The study examined coverage from Sept. 17 to 30 to find that out of 39 shutdown stories, 21 collared Republicans for “triggering the crisis” compared to four that blamed both sides and absolutely none, as in zero and nada, that blamed Democrats.
All that recent name-calling and vilification of Republicans prompted CNN correspondent Jim Acosta to confront White House spokesman Jay Carney about the phenomenon. Mr. Acosta asked “if this White House is trying to taunt Republicans into shutting the government down.”
Could be. President Obama’s shutdown summit with pivotal lawmakers at the White House on Wednesday evening could open a whole new vista of possibilities.
“If Democratic congressmen, or a Democratic speaker of the house, pursuing a liberal policy objective, was subjected to similar ridicule or insults from a Republican president or a Republican senate majority leader, you can bet that the networks would have made such language the centerpiece of their coverage,” Mr. Noyes observes.
FOR THE LEXICON
New term for the fencing erected around the World War II Memorial following the government shut down, referenced by Twitchy.com and other sources.
The term, at this writing, was credited to none other than Joseph Curl, Washington Times columnist and editor of the Drudge Report. President Obama did not benefit from the greater implications of it all.
“Obama sent more protection to the World War II Memorial than he sent to Benghazi,” tweeted Rep. Steve Stockman, Texas Republican.
ON BEHALF OF THE VETS
Judicial Watch, meanwhile, has already filed a Freedom of Information Act with the U.S. Park Service, seeking “any and all” information about the decision to close the aforementioned memorial, even as the incredible World War II “Honor Flight” vets — many in their 90s — assembled at the site for a visit of a lifetime.
The American Center for Law and Justice, a constitutional law firm in the nation’s capital, is prepared to take legal action if the Obama administration does not reopen the World War II Memorial. The organization is also calling on President Obama to apologize to the vets.