“Flummoxed Charlie Rose on Midterm Anger: ‘Why Is It They Don’t Like’ Obama?”, as spotted by Scott Whitlock at the Media Research Center:
The CBS This Morning crew on Tuesday alternated between confusion as to why Barack Obama may be driving Republicans to a big midterm victory and strident declarations that the GOP would have no mandate. Co-host Charlie Rose talked with political director John Dickerson and wondered of disenchanted voters: “So, why is it they don’t like this President so much? Is it a spillover from ObamaCare or something else?”
Talking with Rose today, Dickerson went on of course to dismiss the GOP and their voters (i.e. half of CBS’s audiences), and gives an answer similar to the late Peter Jennings’ infamous “temper tantrum” crack after the GOP won the 1994 midterms. But what else would we expect from the “CBS political director?” In early 2013 at the then-Washington Post-owned Slate, Dickerson wrote, “The president who came into office speaking in lofty terms about bipartisanship and cooperation can only cement his legacy if he destroys the GOP. If he wants to transform American politics, he must go for the throat,” which hardly makes him a neutral, unbiased political observer. (And so much for the media’s collective pledge of a new civility following the Giffords shooting in early 2011.)
But this isn’t the first time that Rose, who’s been in the MSM since the early 1970s, has feigned confusion over Mr. Obama. Right around this time in 2008, Rose and Tom Brokaw famously pretended to not know anything about the worldview of the then-likely next president of the US:
CHARLIE ROSE: I don’t know what Barack Obama’s worldview is.
TOM BROKAW: No, I don’t, either.
ROSE: I don’t know how he really sees where China is.
BROKAW: We don’t know a lot about Barack Obama and the universe of his thinking about foreign policy.
ROSE: I don’t really know. And do we know anything about the people who are advising him?
BROKAW: Yeah, it’s an interesting question.
ROSE: He is principally known through his autobiography and through very aspirational (sic) speeches.
BROKAW: Two of them! I don’t know what books he’s read.
ROSE: What do we know about the heroes of Barack Obama?
BROKAW: There’s a lot about him we don’t know.
So just to review: Obama surging in polls in late October of 2008, Charlie pretends to know nothing about his ideology, lest he say anything that could damage his chances. Obama tanking in polls in late October of 2014, Charlie knows nothing about why his polling has cratered, lest he say something that could improve the GOP’s chances. As I’ve written before about his 2008 performance, it’s not like Rose and Brokaw head mammoth news organizations that could readily answer their queries, should they have chosen to ask them.
Ever since the days of Walter Cronkite and Daniel Schorr smearing Barry Goldwater as a crypto-Nazi in the early 1960s, old media has always largely been staffed by “Democratic operatives with bylines,” as Glenn Reynolds would say. But they used to appear to be (a) much better at explaining the issues and (b) a bit more subtle when it came to hiding their biases. Why should viewers watch someone who pretends to be so existentially confused about the events of the day?
Related: “The left insists election GOP is winning handily is ‘boring’ and ‘about nothing,’” Noah Rothman writes at Hot Air.
But of course — Bill Clinton or JFK wins with under 50 percent of the vote? Mandate for sweeping change. Obama wins in 2008 with 53 percent of the vote? “We Are All Socialists Now.” GOP wins with clear majority? It’s always a show about nothing, according to the MSM.