- The Washington Times - Monday, January 26, 2015

The march for what? Nineteen pro-life organizations and the Media Research Center have joined together to call out the “Big Three” broadcast networks for essentially ignoring the Annual March for Life, which drew thousands of participants, four lawmakers and a host of significant activists to the National Mall last week. CBS was the sole broadcaster that acknowledged the event in a single 15-second segment. NBC and ABC were mum.

“If these were a few dozen hipsters protesting corporate profits while taking selfies with iPhones, the networks would have wall-to-wall coverage. The media cannot be bothered to cover 200,000 pro-lifers who came to Washington in the middle of winter to march for the unborn,” says Brent Bozell, the center’s founder.

“It’s shameful. If you’re throwing Molotov cocktails at police officers, the media will provide sympathetic coverage to your cause. If you’re standing up for the most vulnerable in our society, the media turn a deaf ear,” Mr. Bozell adds. “With each passing day, the media continue to hemorrhage their credibility.”

CHRISTIE AND THE BLIZZARD

Weather events of huge magnitude inspire news coverage that is often cautionary, melodramatic and occasionally alarming. Winter Storm Juno has been described as historic, epic, colossal, unprecedented, massive and crippling among many things. Twitter is already abuzz with the hashtag #Blizzardof2015. But through it all, some politicians stay right in character.

“From all the reports I’ve seen, you’ve all seemed to have been to the supermarket in the last 24 hours and I don’t know why the rush on bread, but what the heck. If you want more bread I’m sure you’re able to get it,” New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie observed at a press conference on Monday, set inside a state-operated garage in Newark. Yes, he declared a state of emergency. But he noted that he was prepared to shovel snow at his own house, right alongside his college-aged son Andrew.


SEE ALSO: John McCain: Iran ‘on the march’


“This is gonna to be a lotta snow no matter how you add it up. So we’re challenged, but we feel like we’re prepared and we’re ready. And if you all stay home and help, that will make things significantly safer for you and your family and significantly easier for the men and women who are going to be working hard to try to restore New Jersey to normalcy after the storm is over,” Mr. Christie said.

FOR THE LEXICON

“Blizzard buddy”

— New category in the New York City-area Craiglist personal ads for those seeking, uh, amorous contact during the big blizzard, as reported by CNN correspondent Brandon Griggs. “Forget the bread and milk,” he writes.

MR. RYAN TAKES CARE OF BUSINESS

Rep. Paul Ryan has made it clear he’s not running for president in 2016, advising the press that his new role as chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee is enough. “Our party has a responsibility to offer a real alternative. So I’m going to do what I can to lay out conservative solutions and to help our nominee lead us to victory,” advised the Wisconsin Republican. On Tuesday, Mr. Ryan gets a showcase for such things at the Heritage Foundation, joining the organization’s president Jim DeMint to talk up trade, tax reform and solutions to partisan gridlock. Practical stuff. Heritage, meanwhile, is launching a new Index of Economic Freedom that evaluates both economic conditions and policy in 186 countries.

“Governments that respect and promote economic freedom provide greater opportunities for innovation, progress, and human flourishing,” the forthcoming index notes. “The precipitous decline of America’s economic freedom since 2008 has been arrested. However, the United States remains stuck in the 12th spot globally, and continuing to trail such comparable economies as New Zealand, Australia, Switzerland, and Canada.” Find the index, and a link to Mr. Ryan’s appearance here: Heritage.org/index

MRS. CLINTON LOSES THE EDGE

Recent news reports from Politico and other sources suggest Hillary Rodham Clinton has built up a formidable presidential campaign apparatus and is ready to launch. But alas. Hillary fever may be waning. A new Zogby Analytics Poll of likely voters reveals that Mrs. Clinton still leads her Republican rivals. “But her leads are narrowing significantly,” reports pollster John Zogby.

She bests Jeb Bush by only 8 points — 45 percent to 37 percent respectively, down from 49 percent to 34 percent a month ago. Mrs. Clinton is now 9 percentage points over Mitt Romney, 46 percent to 37 percent, down from 48 percent to 33 percent.

“A lead is still a lead, but her margins are narrowing among several key subgroups,” Mr. Zobgy says, citing shrinking favorability among women, Hispanics, Catholics, independents and in several age groups. Her advantage has also declined in match-ups with Sen. Rand Paul and New Jersey Governor Chris Christie. Her steady favorability numbers were originally in the mid-50s, the pollster says.

“These are not good numbers for Republicans. While these are the only four candidates we tested, they are all prominent and none of them even hits 40 percent — a very bad sign for a national party. But essentially, Clinton simply running against herself is not doing well either, certainly not enough to close any deal,” Mr. Zogby observes.

GOVERNOR FARK

Those familiar with Fark — a clever and much visited news site — are likely familiar with Drew Curtis, the entrepreneur who founded Fark in 1999. It is now the sixth largest driver of online social media traffic, just behind Facebook, Twitter, StumbleUpon, Reddit and Pinterest. Mr. Curtis declared Monday that has decided to run as an independent candidate for governor of Kentucky, with his wife Heather running for Lieutenant governor. They have declared they are “citizen candidates,” along the lines of Bob Healey, an educator who ran for governor of Rhode Island, spent $35 and won 22 percent of the vote and Rep. David Brat, the straightforward college professor who defeated Rep. Eric Cantor in Virginia in 2014.

“We are standing up against career politicians, political parties, special interests, and every group that thinks they deserve more influence than you,” the couple say in their campaign statement. “Citizen Candidates evaluate ideas on merit, not on outside influence, campaign contribution sources, or party ideology. They believe a good idea is a good idea, no matter which political party supports it. Citizen Candidates are regular people with common sense,” the couple note.

POLL DU JOUR

75 percent of American have heard of the New England Patriots controversy over underinflated footballs; 86 percent of Republicans, 70 percent of independents and 75 percent of Democrats agree.

43 percent overall do not care if the Patriots head coach is suspended or not; 37 percent of Republicans, 43 percent of independents and 46 percent of Democrats agree.

39 percent overall do not care about the controversy itself; 30 percent of Republicans, 42 percent of independents and 40 percent of Democrats agree

38 percent overall think the Patriots are “cheaters”; 44 percent of Republicans, 35 percent of independents and 38 percent of Democrats agree.

31 percent think the Patriots head coach should be suspended; 31 percent of Republicans, 31 percent of independents and 31 percent of Democrats agree.

24 percent do not think the Patriots are cheaters; 26 percent of Republicans, 23 percent of independents and 22 percent of Democrats agree

Source: A YouGov poll of 1,000 U.S. adults conducted Jan. 21-23.

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