Monday, May 7, 2007 | Contact: Colleen O'Boyle (703) 683-5004
MSNBC's Matthews Emphasizes Liberal Questions at GOP Debate: Is Bill Clinton Good for America?
The Two Debates: MSNBC's
Friday's Today show, MSNBC's Chris Matthews defended his
ludicrous decision to ask the GOP candidates if it would "be good
for America to have Bill Clinton back living in the White House?"
Matthews explained the sociological insight: "They all sort of
guffawed. Well, that's a particularly Republican response. If I
offered that same question up to Democrats...they would be cheering
Matthews proved that the ten Republican debaters are not Democrats -
was there any doubt? The weird Clinton question was symptomatic of
how MSNBC and debate co-sponsor ThePolitico.com spent valuable time
asking the GOP candidates questions that reflected the agenda of
far-left bloggers, not the concerns of GOP primary voters. A week
earlier, while moderator Brian Williams did pose a few right-leaning
questions to the Democratic field, most of that debate reflected
issues that rate high with Democratic voters. In other words, both
debates were dominated by liberal agenda questions.
The Democratic Debate: Brian Williams started off with a
conservative-oriented question to Hillary Clinton about Harry Reid's
statement that the Iraq war is lost: "A letter to today's USA
Today calls his comments 'treasonous,' and says if General
Patton were alive today, Patton would 'wipe his boots' with Senator
Reid. Do you agree with the position of your leader in the Senate?"
But by the time Williams reached Dennis Kucinich, his Iraq questions
were skewing left: "Do you think one can be against the war and
still fund it?"
universal health care, Williams asked the candidates to explain how
they would pay for it, not challenging them on the need for such a
huge new government expansion. On gun control, Williams tried to
embarrass New Mexico's Bill Richardson as too far right: "You are
currently, if our research is correct, the NRA's favorite
presidential candidate of either party....Did anything about the
massacre at Virginia Tech make you re-think any part of your
position on guns?"
questions posed from e-mails were ideologically neutral, such as
"What is the most significant political or professional mistake you
have made in the past four years?" While Mrs. Clinton was hit with a
question from the right - "Would you defy the majority of American
citizens and offer a form of amnesty for illegal aliens?" - John
Edwards enjoyed this liberal-oriented question: "Concerning the
astronomical windfall of major oil companies again in the first
quarter, why is gas still on the rise?"
The GOP Debate: Matthews posed some important questions from the
right, asking each candidate "to mention a tax you'd like to cut,"
and whether "the day that Roe v. Wade is repealed [would] be
a good day for America?" But much of the debate was spent posing
hostile questions from the left. Matthews at one point asked Jim
Gilmore about the Left's favorite whipping boy: "Is Karl Rove your
friend? Do you want to keep him in the White House if you get
elected President?" He challenged Romney about "Roman Catholic
bishops who would deny communion to elected officials who support
abortion rights....Do you see that as interference in public life?"
of the e-mailed questions used liberal catch-phrases: "Will you work
to protect women's rights, as in fair wages and reproductive
choice?" And several e-mailers hoped to catch candidates in moments
of ignorance, asking Rudy Giuliani to explain the difference between
a Sunni and a Shiite, and asking Tommy Thompson to say how many
Americans have been killed or wounded in Iraq.
their debate, none of the Democrats faced questions aimed at showing
their lack of knowledge. That such an approach was taken with the
GOP candidates shows the liberal agenda MSNBC brought to both forums
- with the priorities of GOP voters left by the wayside.
Home | News Division
| Bozell Columns | CyberAlerts
Media Reality Check | Notable Quotables | Contact
the MRC | Subscribe