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Tuesday, June 28, 2022
Newsmax's Bolling Also Ran With Fake-News Story
Topic: Newsmax

We caught CNSNews.com peddling a fake-news story from a shady, anonymous, right-wing dark-money "news" operation that falsely accused an Illinois school district of implementing a race-based grading system, a hot-button CRT-adjacent issue among right-wingers. Well, it wasn't the only ConWeb outlet to run with the bogus story. The Daily Beast reported:

Newsmax host Eric Bolling on Wednesday ran with a supposedly explosive story about Chicago suburban high school districts implementing “race-based grading” systems that would tip the scales against white students.

There’s just one little problem: it isn’t true.

 [...]

While the story had been revealed to be bogus well before Bolling’s showThe Balance aired on Wednesday afternoon, he nonetheless centered an entire segment on the false claims about the district.

“Think about this for a second,” the Newsmax star declared. “Students, depending on their race, will not be held accountable for unexcused absences or failing to do their homework, misbehaving, or being disruptive.”

Rather than bring on a parent from that school district to discuss this story, Bolling instead brought on Terry Newsome, who lives in “nearby” Downers Grove. Newsome made news late last year when he protested the presence of LGBTQ+ books in his children’s school district, calling one book a “child pornographic sketchbook.”

After Newsome compared the so-called “race-based grading system” to affirmative action measures in the Chicago police department, he then mentioned that the Oak Park school district says it isn’t implementing any policy changes. He didn’t believe the district, however.

“In Illinois, most of the schools…they look you in the face and say we aren't teaching CRT. This pornography isn’t pornography because it falls under LGBTQ,” Newsome exclaimed. “So they released a statement saying they aren’t teaching it but the PowerPoints and all the material they reviewed said they’re going to be grading based on race!”

Newsome and Bolling would then spend the rest of the segment railing against Illinois schools while an on-air graphic blared: “CHICAGO HS IMPLEMENTING RACE-BASED GRADING SYSTEM.”

It's been nearly a month since Bolling did this bogus story, and he apparently has made no effort to correct the record.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:42 PM EDT
Thursday, June 23, 2022
Newsmax Joined ConWeb Spin On Durham's Failure
Topic: Newsmax

Like the Media Research Center, WorldNetDaily and CNSNews.com, Newsmax didn'dt take it well when its beloved biased special counsel John Durham's prosecution of Democratic lawyer Michael Sussman failed with him receiving a quick acquittal. A May 31 article by Eric Mack repeated Jonathan Turley's conspiracy theory that the jury was too liberal because the trial was held in Washington, D.C., as well as rantings from the MRC's Curtis Houck:

Special counsel John Durham thanked the Michael Sussmann jury for their service, but critics are blasting the Washington, D.C., judge and jury for the verdict Tuesday.

Constitutional law expert Jonathan Turley denounced a stacked jury that delivered the verdict, including admitted donors to Hillary Clinton, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., and even a woman whose daughter plays sports with the Sussmann's daughter.

"I mean, he is facing a jury that has three Clinton donors, an AOC donor, and a woman whose daughter is on the same sports team with Sussmann's daughter," Turley said in a video posted to Twitter. "With the exception of randomly selecting people out of the DNC [Democratic National Committee] headquarters, you could not come up with a worse jury."

[...]

"Breaking: Ultra-liberal D.C. jury acquits their friend and former Hillary Clinton attorney for having concocted collusion between Donald Trump and Russia," Newsbusters Managing Editor Curtis Houck tweeted Tuesday.

Former federal prosecutor Brett Tolman said Americans should not be surprised a D.C. judge and jury followed the politics instead of the law.

As with his fellow ConWeb outlets, Mack did not mention that Durham had the opportunity to remove jurors he thought were biased during jury selection, and he also had the option to attempt to move the trial to a jurisdiction he thought could be more favorable to his prosecution.

An article by Sandy Fitzgerald turned to a Republican congresswoman to complain about the verdict:

Rep. Nancy Mace, speaking to Newsmax after a Washington, D.C., court's verdict that former Hillary Clinton-connected attorney Michael Sussmann was found not guilty of lying to the FBI, said she does not feel that special counsel John Durham or his prosecutors got their fair day in court, and that "no one is ever held accountable" for breaking laws.

"No one is ever held accountable in this country for breaking the law, particularly in the highest echelons of campaigns and the federal government," the South Carolina Republican said on Newsmax's "John Bachman Now." "It's inexcusable, really, and the frustration of the American people I'm sure will be palpable with this verdict. We just want someone, anyone, to be held accountable for the laws that they're breaking."

Speaking of politicians who haven't been held accountable for the laws they broke, Jay Clemons gave Donald Trump an article to rant about the verdict and other stuff. Clemons made no attempt to fact-check anything Trump said.

Dick Morris called in from bad take-ville for a June 1 column:

The acquittal of attorney Michael Sussmann by a Washington D.C. jury effectively means that no Democrat can ever be convicted of any crime involving corruption as long as the crime has political implications and the trial is before a D.C. jury.

We now have one-party justice in America.

Despite overwhelming evidence that he lied to the FBI, Sussmann was found not guilty by a jury filled with Democrats.

Hillary Clinton got 91% of the votes of the residents of Washington D.C. in 2016.

Biden got 95%, proving that the jury pools are so highly partisan there that they're  incapable of judging the facts and acting impartially in a criminal case involving political charges against prominent Democrats.

Since the Department of Justice (DOJ) is located in the nation's capital, this effectively means there is no way to hold Democrats responsible for their corrupt activities.

Morris went on to huff that "Defense attorneys must be allowed to successfully pursue motions to change venue" -- which ignores the rfact that Durham was the prosecutor, not the defense, and he apparently made no effort to seek a change of venue. He went on to ignore Sussmann's actual defense to assert that "The case against Sussmann was overwhelming" and "His perjury could not be more obvious."

Larry Bell used his June 3 column to rant about the purportedly biased jury, then praise Durham for advancing right-wing narratives:

Durham must have recognized slim odds in a Washington, D.C., court venue where 91% of the electorate voted for Hillary; presided over by an Obama-appointed judge whose attorney wife has represented related scandal compromised former FBI attorney Lisa Page; and with a jury with one member whose daughter is on a high school rowing team with Sussmann’s daughter and as many as three were Hillary Clinton donors — including one who also supported U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.

Whereas a small rodent was set free, we can safely bet that Durham’s larger plan was always to use the trial as means to release information already in his possession as bait to bag much larger game in upcoming indictments and hearings.

Horace Cooper sung from the same choirbook as his Newsmax compadres in his June 4 column:

The evidence presented at trial was overwhelming.

By many accounts, Michael Sussman had indeed lied to the FBI about his reasons for meeting with FBI general counsel James Baker.

He did so to cover up his part in an elaborate role to weaponize the FBI against candidate Donald Trump.

On the other hand, the trial, to use G. Gordon Liddy’s term, was "stacked and packed."

Several Clinton campaign donors were seated on the jury and the presiding judge, an Obama appointee, issued rulings that prohibited Durham’s case preventing him from showing how Sussman’s false statement fit in as part of a far larger narrative.

This greatly affected the trial’s outcome.

[...]

Jury nullification is a poison that having been unleashed by the left could harm everyone.

Regardless of political sympathies, our legal system works best when all citizens — whether in blue or red states — truly do their duty and not simply follow their political allegiances.

Cooper failed to point out that Durham could have tried to move the trial but apparently did not, and also that Durham could have done a better job of keeping allegedly biased jurors off the jury but also apparently did not.


Posted by Terry K. at 2:33 PM EDT
Tuesday, June 21, 2022
Newsmax Actually Asked Zelensky If Trump Would've Stopped Russian Invasion -- Then Buried It
Topic: Newsmax

Newsmax has demonstrated one key streak of independence from slavish right-wing orthodoxy by being a (mostly) solid supporter of Ukraine after it was invaded by Russia -- to the ppoint that it sent TV host Rob Schmitt to Ukraine and scored and interview with Ukraine leader Volodymyr Zelensky. Newsmax CEO Christopher Ruddy announced the interview in a May 31 article:

Newsmax CEO Christopher Ruddy met Tuesday in Kyiv with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy at his presidential offices.

Mr. Ruddy expressed his admiration for the courage and tenacity of the Ukrainian people in their fight for freedom and sovereignty.

President Zelenskyy expressed his gratitude to the Newsmax audience for its strong support and for the strong support of the American people in Ukraine’s struggle to defend their country from Russian aggression.

[...]

After the meeting, President Zelenskyy sat down with Newsmax primetime host Rob Schmitt for a half-hour discussion about the security situation in Ukraine and across Europe.

But even then, it can't completely stop injecting a pro-Trump viewpoint into it. According to a report from the UK Independent:

Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky dismissed the suggestion that Donald Trump could have stopped Russia from invading his country in an interview with Newsmax.

Speaking on Tuesday with anchor Rob Schmitt, the Ukrainian leader said he “cannot predict” what would have happened if Mr Trump was still US president.

Schmitt proposed: “There are many Americans that believe that if somebody like Donald Trump was still in the White House that this invasion would not have happened. What is your position?”

“I am sorry if I’ll be saying something that you don’t like but for us as the country in war, it doesn’t matter whether it’s Democrats or Republicans,” Mr Zelensky replied.” It’s the people of the United States that support us”.

Mr Zelensky continued by saying that “anybody could become the [US] president”, including those who did not like Ukraine and those who were empathetic towards Vladimir Putin, the Russian president.

“Some might like Ukraine more, some less. Some might have respect for Putin, and some might not ...but the values our country is fighting for are definitely the ones shared by the US,” Mr Zelensky said.

Meanwhile, Newsmax cranked out several articles about its Zelensky interview:

But it was only in that last one that it was mentioned that Schmitt asked, and then it wasn't mentioned until the fourth paragraph. The article, by Eric Mack, reprinted much of Zelensky's response but not the part where he said to Schmitt, "I am sorry if I’ll be saying something that you don’t like." That statement still appears in the accompanying video clip.

It seems like Newsmax knew Schmitt's question was dumb and sought to downplay it. That's a sign of self-awareness that we haven't seen from WorldNetDaily.


Posted by Terry K. at 2:24 PM EDT
Updated: Tuesday, June 21, 2022 3:23 PM EDT
Wednesday, June 15, 2022
Newsmax Hires Yet Another TV Host With Issues
Topic: Newsmax

Does everyone Newsmax hires these days have issues of some sort? Seems like it. A May 24 press release touted Newsmax's latest hire:

Newsmax announced today that veteran news anchor and broadcaster Greta Van Susteren will join the network as host of “The Record with Greta Van Susteren,” adding her three decades of experience in journalism to the rising cable channel.

Based in Washington, D.C., and set to premiere on Tuesday, June 14, “The Record with Greta Van Susteren” will lead the network’s weeknight lineup with a solid hour of factual, fair, and independent perspective on the news.

“With all that is going on in the world, I am getting back to my roots — a daily live news show with real reporting from the places where things are happening,” Van Susteren said.

“I have been friends with [Newsmax CEO] Chris Ruddy for years, and he is giving me this great opportunity to return, giving me the complete freedom to cover the news that really matters to people,” Van Susteren said. “I have been impressed by Newsmax’s team and their success, and would love to be part of a news network that is really growing.”

[...]

“No one in journalism better exemplifies Newsmax’s mission to provide fact-based news and fact-based opinion than Greta Van Susteren,” Newsmax Media CEO Chris Ruddy said. “We are so pleased and honored to have Greta lead our nightly news lineup of programs.”

Van Susteren doesn't have as many issues as most Newsmax hires, but she does have issues. As we documented way back when, Politico reported that Van Susteren's husband, John Coale, was among Sarah Palin's political advisers following her 2008 stint as a Republican vice presidential candidate; the Washington Post further described Coale as among the "protecters of the Palin brand." The Huffington Post noted that, that during her stint on Fox News, "Van Susteren has enjoyed unparalleled access to Palin and her family, conducting several interviews from Alaska — most recently with new mom Bristol Palin," though Van Susteren insisted her husband's link to Palin was not responsible for that.

As Van Susteren's debut neared, Newsmax gushed even more in a June 13 press release promoted as a "news" article:

Veteran broadcaster Greta Van Susteren returns to nightly television Tuesday with her new show debuting to lead Newsmax's evening lineup.

Van Susteren, one of the most respected names in television news, will host "The Record with Greta Van Susteren" airing at 6 p.m. every weeknight.

The signature show will be what Van Susteren describes as "a solid hour of factual, fair, and independent perspective on the news."

Needless to say, neither press release mentioned her dubious ethics regarding Palin.


Posted by Terry K. at 4:14 PM EDT
Tuesday, June 14, 2022
Newsmax Columnists' Smears of Biden's Mental Health Get 'Non-Clinician' Tags
Topic: Newsmax

The attacks from Newsmax columnists on President Biden's purported mental health issues are so nasty that Newsmax has felt the need to felt the need to add one of its heavily used tags: "The following column has been authored by a non-clinician." Bill Robinson began his March 8 column this way:

The president was infirm. He was sickly. He had no business being president.

Everybody knew it. Especially those whose job it was to protect him, to help him represent the country and to make sure he was at his peak performance for the American people.

His wife had taken on the role of nursemaid more than a wife or first lady.

His children were substantially less than presidential.

He strived at things — when he had any energy at all — to give away taxpayer money “to help others.” He built some of the biggest, most unwieldy government programs in history and spent other hard-working Americans' money like a drunken sailor.

He took money away from crucial federal programs like the military, education and law enforcement to “invest” in massive long-term societal projects which seemed to benefit only his party and his cronies.

He generated crime like Americans had never seen before and told us all that his jobs plan was working — when it provably was not. He did virtually everything possible to keep Americans on the dole.

Robinson went on and on like this before finally pulling a switcheroo: "Sounds like Joe Biden, no? No. I’m writing about FDR." Never mind that none of those things were true about either president. Nevertheless, he ended his column by playing the Biden informity card again:

And so as Ukraine fights for its life, Dems talk a lot about helping our friends in Ukraine but at the last moment, rely on the fact that Ukraine “is not part of NATO” … an inane technicality.

Ukraine deserves the quick, strong, Christian assistance in protecting their government, their people and the only freedom for thousands of miles to their east. If we let them down now, we will never again be trusted or respected the world over.

As Biden stumbles and bumbles his way through the first year plus two months of his term. One can almost hear him mumbling his unhinged mantra, “What would FDR do?”

In fact, it's right-wingers like those at CNSNews.com who are demanding that the U.S. not help Ukraine or get further involved in NATO, and it's right-wingers like Rand Paul who are obstructing U.S. aid to Ukraine.

Larry Bell kept the slurs continuing in his April 22 column:

Democrat handlers pulled off the greatest confidence heist in American history when they lifted cognitively impaired and achievement-vacuous Joe Biden out of a basement campaign bunker to the catbird seat of power in the Oval Office.

President Biden, just like Candidate Biden, is extensively hidden from the public, teleprompter- and crib note-scripted for media press conferences, and prevented, to the extent possible, from answering shout-out questions that inconveniently challenge his handlers’ agenda narratives.

Bell saw the "non-clinician" tag slapped on another column, this one on May 16:

There sadly comes a time when it’s no longer safe for old Uncle Charlie, Auntie Agnes, or for the rest of us, to have them drive anymore.

Seriously, would you really trust Joe Biden to operate any heavy equipment — a car, or much less, a school bus?

Now imagine the terrifying reality of his continued operation of our nation’s massive military and economic machinery.

[...]

A harsh reality is that we can’t trust Joe Biden’s cognitive capacity and far-left-steering ideology to drive our nation’s future.

Our best hope to prevent his out-of-control vehicle from careening our country over cliffs of irreversible disaster is for midterm congressional elections to sweep away the keys.

Bell is clearly  too driven by personal hatred of Biden to care about medical accuracy -- or that he can't possibly know the full truth about Biden's health and, thus, is simply ranting in an ignorant manner.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:54 PM EDT
Updated: Tuesday, June 14, 2022 1:58 PM EDT
Wednesday, June 8, 2022
Newsmax's Morris Laughably Denies Abortion Will Change Much if Roe v. Wade Is Overturned
Topic: Newsmax

Dick Morris may be on the right side of history in calling out Tucker Carlson's embrace of Russia and Vladimir Putin, he's still fully capable of spectacularly wrong takes. He spent his May 3 Newsmax column denying that things would change much on the abortion front if Roe v. Wade is overturned, as suggested by a leaked draft decision in a Mississippi abortion case:

To hear the howls of the left and the cheers of the right, you would think the Earth was shifting under our feet with the report that the Supreme Court had decided to overrule Roe v Wade. The fact is that not much will change.

The Mississippi law under review only bans abortions after 15 weeks, almost up to the start of the second trimester. It does nothing to limit them before 15 weeks — four months! If you don’t know you are pregnant after four months, you need more than a pregnancy test. You need to have your head examined.

Especially with the 15 week deadline publicized and well known, it is almost inconceivable that a pregnant woman would be surprised to learn that she is with child after 15 weeks.

And, even then, the possible court decision does not make abortion illegal. It just lets the states do so if they wish. At least half the states will likely vote to keep the procedure legal. So with a little bus fare, likely to be available from the millions being donated to pro-choice groups, would solve the problem.

The CDC reports that 92.7 percent of all abortions take place in the first 13 weeks weeks of gestation, when the procedure would still be legal in all states. Only 6.2 percent are done between the 14th and 20th week and less than 1 percent thereafter.

Meanwhile, just a cople hours after Morris' column was published, a Newsmax article by Charlie McCarthy pointed out the reality:

Legislators in 13 states have passed laws to limit or restrict access to abortion that would go into effect if Roe v. Wade is overturned, CNN reported.

In some cases, the law requires an official. such as an attorney general, to certify that Roe has been struck down before the law can take effect, CNN reported.

[...]

Michigan, Wisconsin, and West Virginia are among nine states that had abortion restrictions before the 1973 Roe v. Wade ruling. Those restrictions never were removed.

Alabama, Georgia, Iowa, Ohio, and South Carolina are among states that have approved near-total bans or laws prohibiting abortion after a certain number of weeks, though many of them have been blocked by courts.

Arkansas, Idaho, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, and Wyoming are states with "trigger laws" ready to go into effect almost immediately if Roe v. Wade is overturned.

Given that several states would restrict or completely outloaw abortion if Roe v. Wade is overturned, it sure looks like a lot more than 10 percent of abortions would be made illegal.


Posted by Terry K. at 4:01 PM EDT
Tuesday, June 7, 2022
Newsmax Columnist Whitewashes Story Of Capitol Riot Insurrectionist
Topic: Newsmax

Michael Dorstewitz laid it on thick in his May 18 column, starting with the introduction: "After a 16-month hiatus due to a series of setbacks, Brandon Straka is restarting the #WalkAway campaign, a movement he launched in 2018 to encourage former fellow liberals to #WalkAway from the Democratic Party."

Those "setbacks" were linked to Straka's participation in the Capitol riot. First, according to Dorstewitz, was Facebook shutting down the page for Straka's WalkAway campaign which claims to encourage people to quit the Democratic Party and become Trump MAGA types. For the second, Dorstewitz cranked up the whitewashing drama:

The second setback came 17 days later when "an FBI team in tactical gear [raided] my apartment Monday morning, January 25that dawn, came in and [took] me out of bed, put me in handcuffs, [took] me to jail and [presented] me with a search warrant for a team of FBI agents to start stripping my apartment of computers, hard drives, phones, iPads, camera equipment, clothing, etc."

Straka's crime was accepting an invitation, as the head of #WalkAway, to speak at the Capitol grounds on January 6, 2021. While there, he shot a video at the east entrance to the Capitol.

Straka observed that "It was on the west side that people were breaking windows and struggling with officers."

After shooting about eight minutes of video, he turned around and left.

The camera caught a brief scuffle between an officer and a demonstrator. When Straka got home he posted the video to social media without bothering to look at it.

He told Newsmax that:

• "I never went inside of the Capitol.

• "I was never accused of going inside of the Capitol.

• "They know I didn't engage in any violence, any vandalism, in any theft, or any destruction."

Nevertheless, he was charged with two felonies: knowingly occupying restricted grounds and impeding an officer in the line of duty.

By contrast, as a more honest media outlet reported, Straka "admitted to recording himself telling the mob to 'go go go' as they reached the Capitol and telling rioters who were wrestling a shield away from a US Capitol Police officer to 'take it, take it.'" Straka also tweeted in the midst of the riot, “Patriots at the Capitol- HOLD THE LINE.” Further, the judge -- a Trump-appointed one at that -- pointed out that "He still persists in this idea that it is okay to storm the Capitol to contest an election, and that's not what we do in this country. People who do that are not patriots."

Meanwhile, Dorstewitz was fully invested in making Straka into a victim:

Then Justice Department lawyers dragged the case out with five continuances during the course of a year before offering to drop the felonies in exchange for a guilty plea on the misdemeanor — but it came with a catch. He had to make several false admissions of "fact."

"I can't even describe into words what that has done to me," he said. "It's just destroyed my reputation."

When Straka is asked why he made the admissions and pled to the misdemeanor, he responds, "Are you paying attention? Are you seeing how these cases are being handled?"

Jan. 6 defendant Matthew Perna is a case in point. His family said he was "bullied to death" by government lawyers despite having committed no violent crime. He eventually took his own life for basically entering the Capitol building wearing a MAGA cap.

Yes, participating in a violent insurrection does tend to destroy one's reputation. Dorstewitz apparently didn't ask Straka what statements he made under oath he has decided are now false (something that might put him in further legal trouble for lying to authorities). Also, if Perna's only offense was "wearing a MAGA cap," there would have been no need for him to kill himself. In fact, he was a QAnon conspiracy believe who did violate the law by entering the Capitol, and videotaped himself while there.

In addition to whitewashing Straka's participation in a violent insurrection, Dorstewitz's other purpose was to hype the relaunch of the WalkAway campaign, touting how Straka says he's "working with a development company to build our own social platform" that will be "a cancel-proof platform where we can rebuild that community," as well as an upcoming rally, after which he quoted Straka enthusing, "We're coming back!" That rally was apparently such a bust that we could find no news coverage of it, even in right-wing media.


Posted by Terry K. at 3:50 PM EDT
Wednesday, June 1, 2022
Newsmax Took Part In GOP War Against Disfavored Pa. Senate Candidate
Topic: Newsmax

Before the Republican primary for the Pennsylvania Senate seat, CNSNews.com touted the anti-abortion views of candidate Kathy Barnette and her endorsement by a right-wing Catholic group. By contrast, Newsmax was criticizing Barnette for not being conservative enough. An curiously unbylined May 13 article branded Barnette as "erratic":

Though she got high marks as a pro-life advocate, political newcomer Kathy Barnette has seen her support dwindle as conservatives scrutinize her record.

Barnette's comments in recent years have included claiming unrest in the "Black community" was due to "white racism."

And the protests — that often times turned violent — over the death of George Floyd "were for a very good reason," she said.

Surprisingly, Barnette also has criticized the nation’s first president, saying she "heard white people talking about the high and mightiness of George Washington, a former slave owner."

Just two years ago, Barnette led a petition drive to build a statue to former President Barack Obama and his family.

She said the statue would "serve as an example of how far we have come as a nation."

[...]

"Kathy lost big to a weak Democrat and would lose even more to John Fetterman — giving Democrats another seat in the Senate," GOP Senate candidate Carla Sands, a former Trump ambassador, said during Newsmax's May 4 debate at Grove City College.

"At a time when our conservative values and constitutional rights hang in the balance, we cannot afford to lose this seat."

This was all part of a conservative war against Barnette as she rose in the polls due to top candidates Mehmet Oz and Dave McCormick beating each other up with negative ads. Donald Trump, to whom Newsmax is beholden, endorsed Oz, and Dick Morris dndorsed him too in a May 11 column while also dismissing Barnette as "the weakest in the field to win in November against a heavily funded Democratic candidate. There are even reports that the Democrats are helping her campaign."

A May 16 article by Solange Reyner touted a pre-election robocall Trump made for Oz that trashed other candidates including Barnette: "Barnette 'wanted to build a statue to Barack Hussein Obama and attacked the father of our country, George Washington,' said Trump. 'That's no good. Now she changes her tune, but these are not candidates who put America first and that's what we need.'"

After the election, though -- in which she finished behind Oz and McCormick and the winner remains too close to call -- Barnette appeared on Newsmax TV to do a little cleanup, as summarized in a May 21 article by Eric Mack:

Despite facing a barrage of political attacks in the final week after a well-regarded performance in a Newsmax debate, Pennsylvania GOP Senate candidate Kathy Barnette vows to support the eventual winner between Dr. Mehmet Oz or David McCormick.

"I support whoever comes out of this, of course, right?" Barnette told "Saturday Report." "I mean right now standing, trying to pick between the two is like trying to pick between six in one and a half dozen in another. There's very little distinction between the two.

"But whoever should prevail out of this process, absolutely I want our party to win."

Mack didn't mention that Newsmax was part of that anti-Barnette barrage, or that the reason Barnette needed to commit to supporting the election winner was that she wouldn't commit to doing so before the election.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:08 PM EDT
Tuesday, May 31, 2022
NEW ARTICLE: Newsmax Snipes At The Competition
Topic: Newsmax
Newsmax's potshots at Fox News have largely been about it not being as right-wing and pro-Trump as Newsmax is. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 1:29 AM EDT
Wednesday, May 25, 2022
Newsmax's Morris Still Hammering Tucker Carlson For Supporting Putin
Topic: Newsmax

Dick Morris has been notoriously wrong about many things, but his stopped-clock example of hammering Tucker Carlson and Fox News for effectively supporting Vladimir Putin's aggression in Ukraine has been surprisingly persistent and on point. He served up even more in an April 17 article:

Russia's Vladimir Putin has snagged Fox News and host Tucker Carlson hook, line, and sinker by his propaganda machine, sharing an "anti-American" narrative to conservatives, according to political strategist Dick Morris on Newsmax.

"Putin's strategy is, essentially what the Russians have always done, which is when they do something wrong: They take the copy and they turn it around on its head and blame us for it, even though it's something that they, and not we, have done," Morris, a former adviser to both former President Bill Clinton and President Donald Trump, told Saturday's "The Count."

"It's shocking to see Tucker Carlson doing this, and it's outrageous to see Fox News going along. This is not just pro-Russia, this is not anti-Ukraine, this anti-American."

[...]

Russia is even using Fox News and Carlson clips to justify Putin's invasion of Ukraine and continued escalations, Morris lamented.

"To see the Russian state media, the propaganda machine, quoting the leading talk television host in the United States is outrageous," he added.

Siding with Russia as it invades Ukraine is not only a bad look, but it is spreading disinformation to Americans, according to Morris.

"I think it's absurd and really shocking that Tucker Carlson in particular and Fox News in general really appear to be siding with Russia in this war," he said. "We have Tucker's overt statements saying, 'I side with Russia or I prefer Russia.'"

"And every night Tucker spews a monologue that basically says that the United States and our allies caused this invasion by provoking it by flirting with the idea of Ukraine joining NATO."

Morris said he spent a night this week watching Fox News and "found absolutely no coverage of what's really happening in Ukraine."

"No coverage of Putin's war crimes; no coverage of the atrocities – sometimes they pass it off with, 'We all know that Putin's not a great guy, but,' and then you go on," Morris noted.

[...]

Fox News is just not sharing the total truth, Morris concluded.

"Every night we see real images, not phony ones, of unbelievable havoc and hell being wrought upon the people of Ukraine by Russia – and yet we turn to Fox News and we see this stuff denied, downplayed," Morris said.

Morris used a May 17 column to lash out at Republican Sen. Rand Paul for obstructing U.S. aid to Ukraine, taking another shot at Carlson and Fox News in the process:

Rand Paul and a small band of Republican congressmen are using the same arguments and the same phony construct to oppose aid to Ukraine.

It is a message that Fox News' Tucker Carlson has been pushing for weeks: Why are we spending money on Ukraine when we need money for cancer research, roads and bridges, border security -- and as we struggle to keep gas prices down and fight inflation.

Carlson has long been a Kremlin apologist. And Fox News has been abetting his position with little or no coverage of Russia's war on Ukraine during its prime-time hours.

Fox's audience is becoming increasingly blind to the reality of this war, opening the door for Rand Paul and others.

Thankfully most Americans see the real danger Vladimir Putin poses to all of us.

Morris isn't the only person at Newsmax serving up stopped-clock takes, however. The hard-right David Horowitz and Daniel Greenfield took their own shots at Carlson and Fox News in a May 19 column, though he did make sure to blame Democrats for doing things that led up to this and President Biden for not doing anything effective:

Tucker and the conservative patriots who have joined him are wrong — wrong in their analyses, wrong in their priorities, and wrong in their opposition to a war that the West (led by the United States) must win.

Tucker has argued that Ukraine is a remote European country, and the U.S. has no security interest there that is worth the cost or the risks involved in defending it.

But in today’s world there are no remote countries.

[...]

What is happening in Ukraine is like 40 Guernicas or Coventrys rolled into one; it is also a spectacle of inspiring human heroism and courage with few parallels in our time or any other.

America can not turn our backs on the ordinary Ukrainian people who have risen so nobly to defend their homes.

[...]

Under President Trump, this crisis would not have occurred. There’s a reason that both of Putin’s invasions of Ukraine took place under White House Democrats.

That’s also why Russia’s Alaska incursions flared up under Obama and Biden.

Weakness is much more likely to bring on a war.

Abandoning the Ukrainians would be a sign of crippling weakness.

Biden badly mishandled the Ukraine crisis.

But we should not let the corruption in the White House or other political institutions, here and abroad, blind us to the human suffering or the bigger issues at stake for our national security.

If Russia’s efforts in Ukraine fall apart, it will not be due to Biden or the European Union, but the resilience of ordinary people in the face of war.

Horowitz and Greenfield can't quite concede that the billions in aid and weapons the U.S. and Europe are sending to Ukraine might be playing a major role, presumably because Democrats and liberals are behind them.


Posted by Terry K. at 5:19 PM EDT
Updated: Wednesday, May 25, 2022 5:20 PM EDT
Tuesday, May 24, 2022
Newsmax's Hirsen: You Lose Your Soul If You Get Microchipped
Topic: Newsmax

Last year, Newsmax columnist James Hirsen embraced extremist Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene for pushing the idea of COVID vaccination passports as the mark of the beast. Hirsen went that direction again in his May 2 column that declared getting an implantable chip that could be used for making financial transactions would also be the mark of the beast under the dire headline "Submitting to Microchip Means Forfeiting Your Soul":

Bible adherents who are Christian believe that The Word of God contains prophecies within the Books of Revelation and Daniel, which provide a description of a future time in which a single global government will assert control over a world economy.

Not all Bible believers view prophecy in a literal sense, but a sizable number do. Such individuals give greater weight to the Scripture passage in which a malevolent world leader forces “…all people, great and small, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hands or on their foreheads.”

The Bible passage goes on to state that the people oppressed by this evil leader would be unable to “… buy or sell unless they had the mark …”

The demand that one's hand or forehead be marked in order to purchase or otherwise engage in trade is commonly referred to by Scripture scholars and Bible adherents alike as “The Mark of the Beast.”

In order to conform to Biblical predictions, the above described hand implant technology would have to be implemented through coercion. This is not nearly as far-fetched as it used to seem; that power hungry elites would actually force individuals to be microchipped.

The notion of our economy being transformed into a cashless society, where governing authorities have power over the operation of individual microchips, is a nightmare scenario. Freedom itself would be snuffed out.

[...]

When you think about it, if all of your personal data were to be stored in your hand, it would be way too easy for that information to be misused.

Bottom line: If you allow yourself to be chipped, you may find that you have handed over your life to the powers that be. And possibly even your soul.

Hirsen himself seems to be on a journey of trying to reclaim his soul after selling it in the form of enthusiastically embracing Donald Trump's lies about election fraud, which culminated in the Capitol riot -- though he's never confessed to being taken in by Trump's fraud.


Posted by Terry K. at 3:47 PM EDT
Thursday, May 19, 2022
Newsmax's Kerik Endorsed Ohio GOP Senate Candidate Who Placed Fifth
Topic: Newsmax

Bernard Kerik knows how to pick 'em, doesn't he?

We've previously noted Kerik's enthusiastic embrace of  Eric Greitens for a Missouri Senate seat despite the allegations of sexual blackmail and election finance violations that forced him to resign as Missouri governor. Even after Greitens' ex-wife made allegations of spousal abuse against him, Kerike apparently hasn't abandoned him; we could find no statement from Kerik either defending or denouncing Greitens even though Newsmax, which publishes his column, abandoned its fawning coverage of him after the latest allegations came out.

Perhaps that's why Kerik went the boring route in his endorsement in the Republican primary for an Ohio Senate seat in an April 12 column:

In the Ohio Senate primary, there’s a clash of self-proclaimed MAGA candidates all clamoring for the Trump, America First mantle.

However, it only takes a closer look to see who are pretenders, and who's the real deal.

Jane Timken is the only true MAGA conservative in Ohio who has been there for President Trump and the America First movement since 2016 and all the way through, to the present day.

Kerik went on to slag the better-known (and crazier) candidates in the primary like J.D, Vance and Josh Mandel, as not Trumpy enough: "While other candidates in this race, especially Josh Mandel, love to talk about the 2020 election because they know it’s what President Trump wants to hear, my question to them is: where were they when it mattered?"

Unfortunately for him, Kerik's endorsement of Timken, the chairwoman of the Ohio Republian Party, didn't matter to Ohio Republicans -- she finished fifth in the primary with less than 6% of the vote. Even Kerik's praise of Timken's promotion of Donald Trump's Big Lie didn't sway anyone:

As the lead investigator for President Trump’s legal team, led by Rudy Giuliani into the 2020 election, I know that Jane Timken put in the work to make sure Ohio’s election was secure and that Ohio delivered.

She worked with the Trump campaign to have an election integrity war room, and even caught a Democrat operative trying to push ballot harvesting and referred them to the attorney general.

Pehaps it's best that Kerik doesn't remind anyone that he has been dancing around with Jan. 6 committee investigators over whether to talk about his presence in the Trump campaign's "command center" on the day of the riot.On the other hand, Timken has said there were no election issues in Ohio, but embraced the Big Lie enough to claim other states were the real problem.


Posted by Terry K. at 2:47 PM EDT
Tuesday, May 17, 2022
Newsmax Lets Trump Lie About Strategic Petroleum Reserve -- Again
Topic: Newsmax

Back in November, Newsmax let Donald Trump falsely claim that the Strategic Petroleum Reserve was "low or virtually empty" when he took office and that filling it up was a great act of political courage. In a March 31 article, Nicole Wells let him lie about it again:

As President Joe Biden weighs releasing a record amount of oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve to bring down soaring gas prices, former President Donald Trump predicts that Biden will soon empty it.

Citing someone familiar with the matter, CNN reports that the Biden administration is considering a plan to release approximately 1 million barrels per day from the reserve in the coming months.

A decision could come as early as Thursday, when Biden is scheduled to speak about gas prices from the White House.

"So after 50 years of being virtually empty, I built up our oil reserves during my administration, and low energy prices, to 100% full," Trump said in a statement Thursday. "It's called the Strategic National Reserves, and it hasn't been full for many decades. In fact, it's been mostly empty."

As we documented, the Strategic Petroleum Reserve was more than 80 percent full -- not "virtually empty" -- when Trump filled them, it took no political courage on Trump's part to do so given that oil prices were at rock bottom at the start of the pandemic. And contrary to Trump's later claim that the SPR is "supposed to only be used for large-scale emergency or conflict," Trump also signed a bill while in office mandating the sale of 100 million barrels of SPR oil to fund the government.

Wells made no attempt to fact-check Trump.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:58 PM EDT
Wednesday, May 11, 2022
Newsmax Portrays Fired Radio Host As Victim, Censors Previous Inflammatory Tweets
Topic: Newsmax

An anonymously written April 5 Newsmax article ramped uyp the victimhood for a fired right-wing radio host:

A talk show host claims she was fired from a Washington radio station because she deigned to make light of an outfit worn by Vice President Kamala Harris during last month's State of the Union address.

As reported by The Daily Mail, Amber Athey also works for conservative magazine The Spectator.

Athey is a conservative host with a job on a morning show at news station WMAL.

She got into hot water, she said, when she wrote a light tweet about the color of the suit Harris was wearing -- a brownish hue.

'Kamala looks like a UPS employee — what can brown do for you? Nothing good, apparently,' Athey wrote in the March 1 tweet, making reference to a longtime UPS tagline.

She said there was no sign of any offense for days. But in time, she said, some comments about transgender issues earned her the wrath of left-leaning activists and the tweet was recast as racist.

Just because nobody was immediately offended doesn't mean Athey's tweet wasn't offensive. The "left-leaning activists" who purportedly "recast" Athey's tweet weren't identified; again, there's no need to "recast" something as offensive when it was always that way.

Newsmax also censored the fact that this is not the first time Athey has gotten in trouble for offensive tweets. In 2019, Athey issued an apology over racist and anti-Semitic tweets which she tried to dismiss as having been made "when I was in high school," adding that "I understand now that they are not funny and are in fact extremely harmful." Of course, the vast majority of high school students graduate without ever making racist or anti-Semitic tweets.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:56 PM EDT
Tuesday, May 10, 2022
Newsmax's Gizzi Cheers Orban's Re-Election, Hides How He Rigged It
Topic: Newsmax

John Gizzi gushed over an authoritarian's re-election in an April 4 Newsmax article:

As the Biden White House and the European Union no doubt looked forlorn, near-final results from Hungary showed Monday morning that Prime Minister Viktor Orban and his conservative Fidesz Party scored a resounding 53 percent of the vote in national elections.

The vote is even more reassuring because of the significant opposition Orban has faced from within and outside of Hungary.

Both the strong economy and what supporters call Orban's "sensible conservatism" — policies that increased the birth rate and kept Hungary neutral in the Russo-Ukraine War — were key to the big win by Fidesz.

Hungarian sources told Newsmax that Orban's conservative agenda has meant a strong economy, and he translated that into a big win in parliament.

The election result means Orban will hold a record fourth consecutive term as prime minister — with 135 seats for Fidesz and the six-party opposition alliance only 56 seats.

So crushing was the victory by Fidesz that opposition leader Peter Marki-Zay lost his own district where he had been a popular mayor.

Gizzi omitted one big reason why Orban won -- his years in power allowed him to rig the election to undercut his oppostion. The Washington Post reported:

Hungary’s electoral playing field is heavily tilted against the opposition. In 2010, Orban amended the Constitution to cut the size of the parliament in about half, after which he gerrymandered the entire country. The districts, drawn with no input from the opposition, spread Fidesz voters across many small districts in rural areas while concentrating opposition voters in much larger districts in the cities, thus giving them fewer chances to win.

After this redistricting, in 2014, Orban’s party won 45 percent of the vote — but 91 percent of the districts (under Hungary’s electoral system, 106 of the seats are awarded through single-member districts, while the other 93 are awarded through a nationwide electoral list). Similarly, in 2018, Fidesz won 48 percent of the vote and 86 percent of the districts. On election night 2022, with 98 percent of the vote counted, Orban won 53 percent of the vote but 83 percent of the districts. The absentee voters are divided between liberal expats who oppose Orban and conservative Hungarians in neighboring countries who are likely to support him in larger numbers.

[...]

Facing a united opposition, Orban then changed the rules again to wrong-foot them. A November law introduced “voter tourism,” allowing any Hungarian citizen to legally register to vote in any district. Before the election, evidence surfaced that voters were being strategically moved into districts that might otherwise be close, with hundreds of voters registered at single residences. On Election Day, monitors documented minibuses delivering clusters of voters to polls.

Beyond rule-rigging, Orban so dominates the broadcast and print media landscape that the opposition could hardly get its message out.

In addition, Fidesz spent almost 10 times more than the opposition on billboards, overshooting legal campaign finance limits on billboards alone. But Fidesz has repeatedly escaped enforcement of campaign finance rules because it controls the office that enforces them, while other parties have been fined nearly out of existence.

Hiding Orban's obvious election fraud and rigging is ironic given how Newsmax has enthusiastically promoted Donald Trump's discredited election-fraud claims.

Gizzi also touted Orban's allegedly neutral stance on Russia's invasion of Ukraine:

Despite the international media repeatedly dubbing Orban a "Putin Ally" and citing his convivial relationship with the Russian president, Hungarian voters apparently liked their prime minister's policy of neutrality toward Russia and Ukraine.

Hungary has criticized the invasion and taken in refugees, but has not offered to assist Ukraine's military resistance.

Despite repeated urging from Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy to send arms and impose sanctions on Russia, Orban has refused.

But as CNN reported, Orban has long been close to Vladimir Putin -- to the point that Putin congratulated Orban on his victory -- and much of Hungary's energy comes from Russia; in his victory speech, Orban called Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky one of the "opponents" he had to overcome during the campaign.

Gizzi further gushed that Orban's "pro-family policy," in which "mothers who have four children are exempt from federal income taxes for life," has resulted in "an increase in the fertility rate of 24% in the last decade," according to Minister of Families Katalin Novak, who was elected "Hungary's first woman president" in the election.


Posted by Terry K. at 11:29 AM EDT

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