Opinion: Media Mangle

Media covering up Obama’s speech-scheduling gaffe

Petty act by White House spun as ‘unprecedented’ snub by GOP

I’ve often made the observation that the mainstream media shills for liberals and attacks conservatives. In the real world of American politics that usually means helping Democrats and hindering Republicans.

Liberals disagree, of course, but I have emperical facts on my side. A good example is today’s McClatchy story in The News & Observer about President Obama’s speech next week to a joint session of Congress to reveal what has been for more than a year his vaporware jobs plan.

Anyone who follows politics on the internet knows that Obama and his staff tried to bigfoot the long-scheduled GOP presidential-candidate debate at the Reagan Library by presuming to call his own special session of Congress at exactly the same date and time. It was a petulant and immature move, the kind we’ve become used to seeing from this president.

Even some Democrats saw the ploy for what it was. Democratic operative Lanny Davis called it a “dumb idea” and a “tremendous blank-up” on WMAL’s Morning Majority radio show today (full disclosure: he was being interviewed by my daughter).

House Speaker John Boehner waited a few hours before telling the president that 8 p.m. on Sept. 7 was not a good time for Congress, and he suggested Sept. 8. Surprising many, Obama said OK to that time, despite having to go up against the Green Bay-New Orleans season NFL opener on another network.

It’s pretty obvious they expected Boehner to fold and hadn’t planned on what to do if he didn’t. Now they have to compete against a sports event that most Americans will watch instead of tuning in to yet another prime-time speech by the president.

It was a revealing contretemps for many reasons. It shows the lack of good judgment coming from the White House, an increasing resolve among Congressional Republicans to bolster Congress’ position as a co-equal branch of government. Typically, the mainstream media is calling the rebuff “unprecedented.”

Boehner never mentioned the GOP debate scheculed for Sept. 7, but, then, neither did the president, nor did his spokesman Jay Carney, who disingenuously called it “a coincidence” that they suggested a time that conflicted with the debate. Nor would the White House admit that they had purposely attempted to preempt a GOP prime time event.

All that is by way of giving some context that you will find nowhere mentioned in The News & Observer‘s story in this morning’s paper. Not mentioned is the GOP debate or the conflict in scheduling. The only thing that is said is that Boehner “balked” at the time suggested by Obama.

Conveniently, that allows the meme to develop, which it has, by the way, that the Republicans were being “disrespectful” of the president by not allowing him to have his way, and allows the media to cover up an incredibly petty act by this White House which backfired in a huge way.