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Sunday, December 4, 2022
On Election Day, CNS Pushed GOP Talking Points, Candidates
Topic: CNSNews.com

After playing up Republican talking points and nitpicking President Biden in the runup to the midterm elections, Election Day finally came on Nov. 8 -- and CNSNews.com was still pushing Republican narratives. Susan Jones set up the narrative regarding "election integrity" and election fraud -- suggesting that results that aren't complete on the night of the election may be fraudulent -- in a Nov. 7 article, while taking her usual partisan shots at Biden:

President Biden has said this, and his press secretary repeated it on Monday: It may take a few days to determine the outcome of some close, or legally challenged, elections.

In Pennsylvania, for example, lawsuits already have been filed over thousands of absentee ballots that were not properly dated, and which therefore must not be counted, by order of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court. Democrat Senate candidate John Fetterman has joined a lawsuit challenging the court ruling.

[...]

Jean-Pierre said President Biden has a "full schedule" at the White House on this Election Day. "As I previously said, we expect the President will address the elections the day afterwards. And when we have details on the timing of that, we of course will share it with all of you," she said.

In response to a follow-up question, Jean-Pierre said, "You’re going to hear from the President. He always enjoys taking your questions. [Clearly, he does not.]

On Election Day Nov. 8, first up was Craig Bannister, who complained:

The White House said that the results of Tuesday’s midterm elections aren’t supposed to be known immediately after Election Day and, in several states, they won’t, news reports reveal.

On Monday, White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre repeated President Joe Biden’s prediction that election results won’t be finalized on time, this year, adding that “that’s how this is supposed to work”:

This was followed by an article by Micky Wootten complaining that "the Department of Justice announced that it would be sending poll monitors to 64 jurisdictions across 24 states 'to monitor compliance with federal voting rights laws.'" Another article by Bannister hyped Republican claims that monitoring those elections amounds to intimidation:

Florida and Missouri have told the U.S. Justice Department that they will not allow the DOJ to violate their state laws by going through with its plan to deploy election monitors to their states.

Missouri’s Secretary of State has said that his state will not allow federal agents to illegally intimidate voters,CNN reports:

[...]

Missouri law empowers local election authorities to dictate who may be at polling locations.

Florida has also notified the DOJ it would be illegal for it to intervene in the state’s elections.

Bannister didn't mention that just the day before, CNS had quoted RNC chair Ronna McDaniel declaring that "poll watching is not intimidating" and hyping how "We have poll watchers everywhere. We have 100% coverage," let alone why GOP monitors are OK and federal ones are "illegal."

CNS even made time for some last-minute pro-GOP stenography on Election Day. Melanie Arter wrote:

Despite the White House’s warning that election results may take days to be determined, Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-N.Y.) predicted that we’ll know tonight the fate of the House and Senate and gubernatorial races.

“We're going to know these results tonight, and we are seeing historic turnout. I will tell you in my district in upstate New York, and that bodes very well for statewide tickets like Lee Zeldin. We are seeing Democrats underperform consistently, when it comes to early vote numbers, but I expect results tonight. I expect results when it comes to winning back the House as well as the U.S. Senate and our gubernatorial races,” she told Fox Business’ “Mornings with Maria Bartiromo.”

[...]

“Democrats have been tone-deaf. So has the mainstream media but the good news is the voters in this country are smarter than the mainstream media biased media, which is why the voters and the American people are going to save this country, and it’s why we have states like New York, Oregon Washington state. We have an opportunity to have once-in-a-generation Republican wins,” she said.

Arter shilled for a GOP candidate that day as well:

Arizona GOP Senate candidate Blake Masters promised Tuesday to grind President Biden’s agenda to a halt until he secures the southern border.

“We bear the blunt of this crisis, but the reality is Joe Biden and Mark Kelly and their open borders policies, they've turned every county, not just in Arizona, but every county in America, into a border county,” Masters told Fox Business’ “Mornings with Maria Bartiromo.”

[...]

Masters said that the GOP plans to “bear hug” Biden’s administration and send them a message that nothing gets through unless he actually secures the border.

When asked what he plans to do to stop the flow of fentanyl through the southern border, the congressman said, “Well, by taking back Congress, right. We are going to send Biden a message. We’re going to bear hug his whole administration. I’m going to grind his agenda to a halt unless and until we get border security. 

“I’m not going to vote for a thing, not a single thing, not a continuing resolution, not a single appointee unless Joe Biden actually does something to secure our border. That’s the leverage that one senator has. It’s the leverage that Mark Kelly has had for the last 20 months. Remember we had a 50-50 Senate,” Masters said.

As usual, Arter didn't allow anyone to respond to Stefanik or Masters.

Even Pat Buchanan -- whose presidential campaigns CNS editor Terry Jeffrey worked for in 1992 and 1996 -- got on the GOP talking points bandwagon in his Nov. 8 column:

Which brings us to what the election is really all about: the failure of a regime, and of the president, party and philosophy steering that regime.

[...]

"Democracy" is not on the ballot. What is on the ballot is a huge slice of the leadership and ruling class of the national Democratic Party, which is not the same thing.

What is being decided by the ballots this election season is the verdict of the nation on a president who has failed, a party that has failed, and a political philosophy that has failed.

Democracy has not failed America. The reigning Democrats have failed America. And their desperate leaders are urging us to equate their party's defeat and repudiation with a rejection of our political system.

If we lose the election to these Republicans, Democratic leaders have been telling America, it is because the American people preferred fascism to democracy.

This is the Big Lie of 2022.

Biuchanan didn't say what it would mean if voters decided that Biden and the Democrats weren't the failures he insists they are and rejected Republicans at the ballot box.

Bannister also touted how Republican Rep. (and CNS fave) Jim Jordan, speaking at an election-eve rally in Ohio being held by Donald Trump, declared that "Americans need to embrace three 'words of action' from the Bible" -- though, in true bipartisan fashion, he dinged Jordan for inaccurately paraphrasing the Bible quote Jordan referenced.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:44 PM EST
Updated: Sunday, December 4, 2022 4:39 PM EST
Friday, December 2, 2022
CNS Complains About LGBTQ Club At Jewish College
Topic: CNSNews.com

CNSNews.com doesn't appear to have anyone who's Jewish on staff (they're more Catholic than the pope, remember?), but they do hate LGBTQ people, so it got involved over a controversy over an LGBTQ club at a Jewish college. Managing editor Michael W. Chapman (an LGBTQ-hater extraordinaire) wrote in a Sept. 14 article:

Supreme Court Associate Justice Sonia Sotomayor, a liberal, issued an "emergency stay" to Yeshiva University on Sept. 9, allowing it to stop the creation of an official "Pride Alliance" student club at the 135-year-old Jewish institution of higher education. 

New York County Supreme Court Judge Lynn Kotler had ruled in June that Yeshiva University must allow YU Pride Alliance, otherwise the school would be in violation of the New York City Human Rights Law, which prohibits discrimination by public entities.

In its request to the U.S. Supreme Court, the university said, "As a deeply religious Jewish university, Yeshiva cannot comply with that order because doing so would violate its sincere religious beliefs about how to form its undergraduate students in Torah values." Yeshiva contends that a pro-LGBT student club violates its religious liberty under the First Amendment.

[...]

At the school, students study the Talmud, a series of laws for Jewish living, up to four hours a day. The students dress and behave in accordance with Torah values, and "the entire undergraduate experience is designed to form students in the Jewish faith," said the university in its request to the court.

The next day, CNS published a column by dishonest Catholic Bill Donohue whining that Catholic college aren't following Yeshiva's example in hating their LGBTQ students:

Last week, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a “stay” stopping a New York trial court from ordering Yeshiva University to approve an LGBT student group on campus; Yeshiva is an Orthodox Jewish university that seeks to adhere to the Torah.

This raises the question: How are Catholic colleges and universities dealing with the LGBT agenda?/p>

There are approximately 230 Catholic institutions of higher education in America, and according to New Ways Ministry, a dissident Catholic group that rejects the Church’s teachings on sexuality, more than 130 have yielded, in one way or another, to LGBT demands. Here are 10 examples.

[...]

Pope Francis has addressed the fiction that we can change our sex, calling it gender ideology. He has specifically said that it is “demonic.”

It would be instructive to know what the presidents of these queer-friendly Catholic colleges and universities would do if they learned that these LGBTQIA+ organizations held a forum to denounce the pope for his remarks.

None of what these Catholic schools are doing is required by law—Title IX provides for religious exemptions. It is all voluntary. This is the state of Catholic higher education in America today.

An Oct. 25 article by intern Lauren Shank hyped Yeshiva's creation of an alternate LGBTQ club it could control:

Although Yeshiva University continues its legal battle against YU Pride Alliance, an unofficial student group at the flagship Jewish university, its administration has approved a new organization, the Kol Yisrael Areivim Club for LGBTQ undergraduates, a traditional Orthodox alternative that is grounded in Halacha and Torah values.

In an Oct. 24 press release, the school said, “Yeshiva University, America’s flagship Jewish university, today announced a new initiative grounded in Halacha and Torah values to support its LGBTQ undergraduates, including strengthening its on-campus support services and endorsing a new student club that presents an approved traditional Orthodox alternative to YU Pride Alliance.”

[...]

Regarding student clubs and the current lawsuit, the university provided answers to frequently asked questions on its website, including why the institution created a new club rather than implementing an LGBTQ club that is already present on other campuses.

“Our efforts to formulate a Torah framework to provide our LGBTQ students with profound support is driven by our deep commitment to them and recognition that those who choose to attend an orthodox university come with a different set of expectations and navigate different challenges than those in a typical secular college setting,” part of the answer said.

“Pride Alliance is a recognized movement in colleges throughout the country that not only fights anti-LGBTQ discrimination, a cause which we fully support, but also promotes activities that conflict with Torah laws and values,” said the university. “While an adoption of this national brand is inherently unacceptable in the context of Yeshiva, we also realize the need to find additional ways to be supportive of our students that are consistent with Halacha and inspired by our values."

“That is what we have done with the approval of this new student club,” said the school.  “It is worth noting that this approach is in line with other devout faith-based universities nationwide, who similarly do not host Pride Alliances but have established clubs consistent with their own faith-based languages and traditions.”

Shank censored criticism of the school's creation of the club. The YU Pride Alliance called the club a "desperate stunt" and that the school did not consult students in its creation. And it turns out the club doesn't even actually exist; while the school called it a club, all that has actually happened so far is just establishment of a framework that may lead to a club.


Posted by Terry K. at 2:37 PM EST
Thursday, December 1, 2022
CNS Now Mad At Obama For Using Second-Person Pronouns
Topic: CNSNews.com

One of the pettiest attacks CNSNews.com launched on Barack Obama is criticizing him for the words he said or didn't say -- and, in particular, his alleged overuse of the first person singular. CNS even bashed him over it again last year, despite him being out of office for nearly five years.

CNS found a variation on that theme -- bash Obama for using the second person! An anonymously written Nov. 2 article asserted:

Former President Barack Obama gave a speech in North Las Vegas, Nevada on Tuesday night to support candidates in that state and in his speech had a moment where he repeatedly stated the word “your.”

“You know, Cousin Pooki,” said Obama at one point in the speech as recorded in a CSPAN video.

“You know, your, your, ah, your, you know, your, your, you know, your, your, your, your Nephew Cesa,” said Obama.

“They’re planning. They tell you they are going to vote, but they’re on their couch playing a video game. You got to talk to them,” said Obama.

While the article is anonymous, it was almost certainly written by editor Terry Jeffrey, who spearheaded CNS' Obama word obsession during his presidency. No explanation was provided as to why CNS considered this worthy of devoting a "news" story to.


Posted by Terry K. at 8:57 PM EST
Updated: Saturday, December 3, 2022 1:23 AM EST
Tuesday, November 29, 2022
CNS Nitpicks Biden Statements -- But Uncritically Promotes GOP Attacks
Topic: CNSNews.com

By contrast to its uncritical stenography of Republican attacks on Democrats before the midterm elections, CNS articles on Democrats who criticize Republicans -- and especially articles quoting President Biden -- tended to include criticism and fact-checking. It's something that, as we've noted, CNS rarely did to Donald Trump when he was president.

A good example of how this works is an Oct. 27 article by Susan Jones. First came the complaining:

Who's lying? Republicans are, according to President Joe Biden, who -- according to the Democrat-friendly New York Times -- "spins yarns that often unravel."

In a teleconference fund-raiser on Thursday, Biden said the midterm election is "not a referendum" on Democrat leadership -- "it's a choice," he insisted.

"And this is not your father’s Republican Party," Biden said, according to the White House transcript.

When Biden noted the MAGA extremists "who were breaking down the doors — literally, the doors and the windows of the Congress and two cops ended up dying," Jones did a selective fact-check:

The only person killed on January 6 was a protester, Ashli Babbitt, who was shot by a police officer as she climbed through a window. Four other people died of natural causes, including one police officer.

The D.C. Medical Examiner says Capitol Police Office Brian Sicknick died of natural causes following the riot. And press reports say four police officers who were at the Capitol on January 6 committed suicide much later.

Jones ignored that the medical examiner looking into Sicknick's death said that “all that transpired played a role in his condition,” or that at least two Capitol Police officers who died by suicide had their deaths declared to be in the line of duty.

Then came the whataboutism:

According to a New York Times article published on Oct. 10, 2022, "President Biden has been unable to break himself of the habit of embellishing narratives to weave a political identity."

[...]

The article adds that Biden’s “stories” have been “repeatedly and publicly challenged, as far back as his 1987 campaign for president, when his attempts to adopt someone else’s life story as his own, and his false claims about his academic record, forced him to withdraw.”

Funny how Jones suddenly considers the Times to be a credible source when it criticizes a Democrat -- even though doing so undermines the agenda of CNS and its Media Research Center parent to portray the Times and other outlets as having a hopelessly liberal bias.

In contrast to CNS' uncritically repeating GOP talking points attacking Democrats, Jones spent a Nov. 3 article whining about the attacks Biden issued against "extreme MAGA Republicans:

In a speech that bounced from warnings about political violence, to warnings about "autocrats," to warnings about election deniers, to warnings about “extreme MAGA Republicans” and to the premise that "democracy" is on the ballot, President Joe Biden seemed to be telling the country Wednesday night that unless they vote for Democrats, they can kiss the republic goodbye.

He echoed Abraham Lincoln; he slammed Donald Trump; and he urged Americans to prioritize "democracy" over "policy."

Biden also contradicted himself on the topic of voter suppression -- giving a nod to the "record" turnout in early voting, but also warning that "extreme MAGA Republicans" are "denying your right to vote."

"Once again we’re seeing record turnout all over the country," Biden said in his speech.

Jones then whined that Biden invoked the Constitution and Abraham Lincoln:

Biden also contradicted himself on the topic of voter suppression -- giving a nod to the "record" turnout in early voting, but also warning that "extreme MAGA Republicans" are "denying your right to vote."

"Once again we’re seeing record turnout all over the country," Biden said in his speech.

Abraham Lincoln also used the phrase in his First Inaugural Address, noting that "in 1787, one of the declared objects for ordaining and establishing the Constitution was 'to form a more perfect Union.'”

Lincoln was making the point that no state can lawfully get out of the Union -- "that resolves and ordinances to that effect are legally void, and that acts of violence within any State or States against the authority of the United States are insurrectionary or revolutionary..."

Biden also echoed Lincoln by saying, "What we’re doing now is going to determine whether democracy will long endure."

(Speaking at Gettysburg in November 1863, President Lincoln said: "Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure.")

Unlike with the attacks from Republicans CNS uncritically presented, Jones gave space to a Republican responding to Biden:

In response to Biden's partisan speech, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell tweeted: "President Biden is desperate to change the subject from inflation, crime, and open borders. Now he's claiming that democracy only works if his party wins. What nonsense. Americans aren't buying it. Ask how the last two years have affected your family, and then get out and vote!"

Jones used a Nov. 7 article to hype Biden's response to a question in which he called for "no more drilling" and replacing coal plants with wind and solar. She then blockquoted Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin's "blistering response to Biden's remarks about coal," then added that "As with many of Biden's remarks, the White House tried to walk back the one about coal plants." We don't recall CNS ever promoting walkbacks of remarks made by Donald Trump. We've already noted how Craig Bannister used a diferent Nov. 7 article to criticize Biden denouncing the violent attack on Paul Pelosi by claiming that he was "ignoring times in recent years when prominent Democrats have been criticized" for glorifying violence.

Jones adopted a whining tone in reporting more remarks from Biden in a Nov. 8 article:

Speaking to a group of Democrat [sic] Party officials by teleconference Monday night, President Joe Biden explained what "being a Democrat is all about."

He said Democrats want "power" only to "help people," and he described the opposition as "some of the darkest forces we've ever seen in our history."

"You know, you guys represent everything that’s good about our party, the reason why we got into politics in the first place," Biden told the Democrat National Committee [sic] National Finance Committee, according to the White House transcript:

[...]

Biden then quoted "my dad," as he does so often: "As my dad used to say, 'I don’t expect the government to solve my problem, but I ex- — I just expect them to understand my problem.'"

Jones somehow refrained from adding her usual huffy commentary to what is supposed to be a "news" article. But she did so stealthily by deliberately getting the name of both the Democratic Party and the Democratic National Committee wrong. It's sad that CNS employs someone who deliberately misspells words to advance a political agenda.


Posted by Terry K. at 12:20 AM EST
Monday, November 28, 2022
CNS Unemployment Coverage Distortion Watch
Topic: CNSNews.com

How do you know the employment numbers were good under a Democratic president? CNSNews.com's lead story focuses instead on a different number than the unemployment rate. Susan Jones' lead story on October's employment numbers again put the labor force participation rate in the headline and buried the good news:

In the final jobs report before Election Day, the Labor Department's Bureau of Labor Statistics said the October employment situation weakened from the prior month.

In October, the unemployment rate increased two-tenths of a point to 3.7 percent; and the labor force participation rate declined a tenth of a point to 62.2 percent.

The number of employed Americans -- 158,608,000 in October -- dropped by 328,000 from September's all-time high of 158,936,000.  At the same time, the number of unemployed Americans increased by 306,000 to 6,059,000, and the combination of that unemployed up/employed down produced the higher unemployment rate.

The nonfarm economy added 261,000 jobs last month, well above the consensus estimate of 200,000. Notable job gains occurred in health care, professional and technical services, and manufacturing.

And as before, Jones was still touting how great the economy was under Donald Trump:

The labor force participation rate reflects the active workforce -- the percentage of civilian, non-institutionalized workers available for the production of goods and services, so the higher, the better.

The participation rate was 61.4 percent when Joe Biden took office as the pandemic raged. Today's number, 62.2 percent, is still more than a point below the Trump-era high of 63.4 percent recorded in February 2020, just before COVID shut things down.

Editor Terry Jeffrey served up his usual sidebar about government employment, complaining that it increased "despite the fact that state government employment actually declined during the month." Jeffrey didn't explain why he doesn't think government jobs are real jobs.

For the first time in a while, there was a second sidebar in the form of an anonymously written piece:

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D.-Calif.) put out a statement expressing her satisfaction with the October jobs report released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics and arguing that Republicans are not happy with good economic news.

[...]

“The October jobs numbers are the latest evidence that, under President Biden and the Democratic Congress, America continues to create jobs at a strong, steady, sustainable pace,” Pelosi said.

“While Republicans want to send costs soaring and make working families pay the price, Democrats will always put People Over Politics: lower costs, better-paying jobs and safer communities for all,” she said.

The anonymous author offered no evidence that Pelosi was wrong.


Posted by Terry K. at 7:55 PM EST
Sunday, November 27, 2022
CNS Peddled GOP Narratives Before Midterms
Topic: CNSNews.com

As the midterm elections approached, CNSNews.com endeavored to be a Repuiblian Party mouthpiece by giving Republican politicians and partisans a platform to peddle partisan talking points unencumbered by such inconvenient things like balance or fact-checking. For example:

CNS even tried to clean up and spin away after Republican foibles, like in this Nov. 2 article by Jones:

President Biden and his fellow Democrats claim that Sen. Rick Scott -- and by extension, the entire Republican Party -- want to cut or end the Social Security and Medicare programs.

Biden said it on Tuesday while campaigning in Florida: "You’ve been paying into Social Security your whole life. You earned it. Now these guys want to take it away. Who in the hell do they think they are? Excuse my language," the president said.

"I think the heat of South Florida's gotten to the guy, all right?" Sen. Scott told "Mornings With Maria" on Wednesday.

[...]

Biden on Tuesday pointed to the plan floated by Scott -- not by the Republican Party.

Scott has proposed the following: "All federal legislation sunsets in 5 years. If a law is worth keeping, Congress can pass it again." And: "Force Congress to issue a report every year telling the public what they plan to do when Social Security and Medicare go bankrupt."

Biden told his audience, correctly, that under Rick Scott's plan, "every five years, the Congress will have to vote to reauthorize Social Security — reauthorize it or else it goes away.  Would have to vote to reauthorize Medicare, reauthorize veterans benefits, and I go down the list."

But Biden then translated "reauthorizing" as "cutting."

[...]

Asked if it was a mistake to float a plan that lends itself to misrepresentation by Democrats, Sen. Scott said Democrats "do the same thing" every election cycle:

"They say Republicans are going to cut Medicare and Social Security. They do it whether you put out a plan or not. I do believe that when you run for office you ought to tell people what you're going to do. I'm a business guy. I went and raised money when I was running businesses. Nobody gave me money and said I don't know how I'm going to spend it, just give me the money.

"If you want somebody's vote you should tell them exactly what you're going to do do... We ought to be very specific, how are we going to preserve Medicare; how are we going to preserve Social Security. We have to talk about it. Because what's happening right now, it's going away and nobody wants to talk about it."

As election day neared, CNS was eager to peddle Republican talking points on "election integrity" straight from the source (and, of course, without fact-checking or added commentary). A Nov. 7 article by Jones cheered how RNC chair Ronna McDaniel refused to give a straight answer to the question of whether Republicans would follow in Donald Trump's footsteps and scream "election fraud!" in every election Republicans lose:

Dana Bash, host of CNN's "State of the Union," asked Republican Party Chairwoman Rona McDaniel on Sunday for a "simple yes or no" answer -- "Should Republican candidates, Ron Johnson, all of them, accept the election results?"

McDaniel took the question and ran with it, concluding that Democrats talk a lot about "election deniers," but Democrats themselves are "crime deniers, inflation deniers and education deniers."

The exchange left Bash flustered, as McDaniel turned the "denier" label on Democrats. You can watch the entire exchange in the video below, complete with crosstalk, but here are the highlights.

In response to Bash's question, should Republicans accept the election results, McDaniel replied:

"Well, I would say the same to Stacey Abrams, right, or Hillary Clinton, who's already saying, in 2024, we are going to rig the election. That's not helpful.

"Listen, you should have a recount. You should have a canvass. And it'll go to the courts, and then everybody should accept the results. That's what it should be.

"But I'm also not going to say, if there's problems, that we shouldn't be able to address that. If there's real problems, everyone should be able to address that. And I think Ron Johnson and Stacey Abrams, in the end, once all their avenues are exhausted, right, they will -- they will accept the results."

Jones failed to point out that McDaniel refused to give a straight yes-or-no answer to a simple question.

Another article that day, by Melanie Arter, uncritically let McDaniel spin away reports of right-wing activists intimidating voters by keeping occasionally armed watch on drop boxes by declaring that "nobody should be intimidating or breaking the law. Nobody should, but poll watching is not intimidating. ...This isn't happening from the RNC." A Nov. 8 article by Craig Bannister, however, cheered McDaniel touting how Republicans have lawyered up to fight election results they don't like:

“We’re going to make sure it’s fair,” Republican National Committee (RNC) Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel reassured Americans Tuesday as they went out to vote in this year’s midterm elections.

“Everybody needs to be calm,” because Republicans are hard at work throughout the country to ensure voter integrity, McDaniel promised in an interview with “Fox & Friends,” conducted in a Pennsylvania diner:

"We have poll watchers everywhere. We have 100% coverage. And in Pennsylvania, we have poll workers. We have lawyers everywhere and we're going to make sure, if we see anything wrong, we're going to protect everybody's vote, and we're going to make sure it's fair.”

“But some of these states have wacky laws, and we're just going to have to deal with it and be patient. It may take some time," McDaniel cautioned.

Bannister also uncritically hyped that, in his words, "Democrats are to blame for delays in vote-counting and the erosion of trust in the integrity of the country’s elections."


Posted by Terry K. at 3:52 PM EST
Friday, November 25, 2022
CNS Can't Stop Complaining About Committee Looking Into Capitol Riot
Topic: CNSNews.com

CNSNews.com hates Nancy Pelosi and hated the House committee hearings looking into the Capitol riot, so it's unsurprising that its initial story related to the final committee hearing on Oct. 13 was not about what was discussed during said hearing but, rather, an Oct. 14 article by Craig Bannister on a video of Pelosi released after the hearing:

“I’ve been waiting for this,” House Speaker Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) says in a newly-released video, in which she says claims “punch him out,” if then-President Donald Trump comes to the U.S. Capitol during the January 6, 2021 riot.

“I’m going to punch him out,” House Speaker Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said of Trump as the Capitol riot unfolded, according to video obtained from Pelosi’s daughter and aired by CNN Thursday.

CNN describes the scene, in which Pelosi declares that "this is my moment; I've been waiting for this," gesturing emphatically, before threatening to "punch" then-President Trump:

Bannister did tacitly concede, unlike WorldNetDaily, that Pelosi's remarks came in the context of a violent Trump-inflamed mob attacking the Capitol.

Indeed, CNS did no news article whatsoever on the contents of the hearing -- which arguably belies its claim to be a "news" operation. Instead, intern Lauren Shank wrote an Oct. 14 article uncritically repeating Donald Trump's grievances:

Former President Donald Trump spoke out against the House Select Committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S Capitol, questioning why they did not ask him to testify months ago.

“Why didn’t the Unselect Committee ask me to testify months ago? Why did they wait until the very end, the final moments of their last meeting?” Trump asked on his Truth Social platform.

“Because the Committee is a total ‘BUST’ that has only served to further divide our Country which, by the way, is doing very badly – A laughing stock all over the world?”

In another post he wrote, “The Unselect Committee knowingly failed to examine the massive voter fraud which took place during the 2020 Presidential Election – The reason for what took place on January 6th.”

“Why didn’t Crazy Nancy Pelosi call out the ‘troops’ before January 6th, which I strongly recommended that she do,” said Trump. “It was her responsibility, but she ‘didn’t like the look.’ Crazy Nancy failed the American People!”

Shank refused to fact-check this claim -- if she had, she would have known that Trump never signed an order to deploy National Guard troops that day, so Pelosi could not possibly have turned it down.

Shank did eventually get around to describing something that actually happened at the hearing, while, of course, putting some biased spin on it:

While the potential of Thursday’s hearing may be its last on the Jan. 6 attacks, the committee, consisting of seven Democrats and two Republicans, all said “aye” in voting to subpoena Trump.

(The two Republicans, Rep. Adam Kinzinger (Ill.) and Rep. Lynne Cheney (Wyo.), had expressed their disapproval of Trump even before the events of Jan. 6, 2021 and had voted for his impeachment.)

[...]

Although Trump’s critics frequently describe the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol as an insurrection, to date not one person (of  900-plus arrested) apparently has been charged with insurrection.

The harshest charge has been “seditious conspiracy,” and brought against only 11 people.

Shank didn't expaloin why someone has to actually be charged with insurrection to describe the riot as an "insurrection."

Even though there will be no more committee hearings, CNS continued to attack the committee. Bannister invoked two of his favorite right-wingers to go after Pelosi again in a Nov. 10 article:

Democrats “never intended” their January 6 Select Committee to be political and “it was never planned as a political tactic,” House Speaker Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) – who refused to allow Republicans to seat their own committee members – said Tuesday as the midterm elections were taking place.

Pelosi insisted that Democrats’ one-sided January 6 Select Committee hearings had no political agenda, when asked by PBS NewsHour Host Judy Woodruff about voters’ disinterest in the televised, public hearings.

“Well, well never intended it to be a political item. It’s about seeking the truth,” Pelosi responded.

“[I]t was never planned as a political tactic,” Pelosi added, repeating Democrats’ mantra that “democracy is at stake” in this year’s midterm elections.

But, as Constitution Scholar Mark Levin has explained on his “Life, Liberty & Levin” television program, the “illegitimate” hearings are an unconstitutional effort to indict and smear former President Donald Trump and his Republican colleagues:

[...]

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich (R), who spent 20 years in Congress, has also explained how the one-sided hearings have been purely political.

“What I saw last night was a show trial worthy of Joseph Stalin,” Gingrich observed, following one of the hearings conducted in June. “Last night’s January 6 Committee propaganda show had nothing in common with legitimate congressional hearings.”

“There is a sense of fairness and Due Process which is central to American freedom and independence. The January 6 Committee has violated every aspect of due process, presumption of innocence, and impartial search for truth,” Gingrich noted.

Bannister didn't mention that because the committee hearings were not part of a legal process, there was not a duty to follow due process. He also didn't mention that Republicans had every right to hold their own hearings to build a counter-narrative to the House committee but chose not to.

Managing editor Michael W. Chapman tried to help Republicans fiorward a conspiracy theory about the riot in a Nov. 15 article:

At a hearing held before the House Homeland Security Committee on Nov. 15, FBI Director Christopher Wray declined to say whether the FBI had used "confidential human sources" "dressed as Trump supporters" in the Capitol during the Jan. 6, 2021 insurrection. 

House Rep. Clay Higgins (R-La.) asked Wray, "Does the FBI have confidential human sources -- did the FBI have confidential human sources embedded within the January 6 protesters on January 6, 2021?"

FBI Director Wray replied, "Congressman, as I'm sure you can appreciate, I have to be very careful about what I can say about when -- may I finish -- about when we do and do not and where we have and have not used confidential human sources."

"But to the extent that there's a suggestion, for example, that the FBI's confidential human sources or FBI employees in some way, instigated or orchestrated January 6, that's categorically false," said Wray.

Higgins then asked, "Did you have confidential human sources dressed as Trump supporters inside the Capitol on January 6, prior to the doors being opened?"

Wray replied, "Again, I have to be very careful --."

At that point, Higgins interjected, "It should be a no. Can you not tell the American people no, we did not have confidential human sources dressed as Trump supporters positioned inside the Capitol?"

Wray then responded, "You should not read anything into my decision not to share information on confidential human sources."

At that point, Committee chairman Benny Thompson (D-Miss.) said Higgins' time was up and they moved on to another congressman.

Higgins' line of questioning leaned into a conspiracy theory forwarded by right-wingers that secret FBI agents embedded in the crowd caused the violence that day. Chapman failed to explain that to his readers.


Posted by Terry K. at 12:43 AM EST
Thursday, November 24, 2022
CNS Defends GOP Candidate's Mockery Of Paul Pelosi Attack, Pushes More Distraction Talking Points
Topic: CNSNews.com

CNSNews.com was so committed to sticking to Republican narratives of whining and whataboutism regarding the violent hammer attack on Paul Pelosi that CNS writer Susan Jones rushed to the defense of a Republican candidate for making light of the attack.

Jones had already uncritically repeated Arizona GOP gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake whining that "You can't talk about Paul Pelosi, now you can't talk about Nancy Pelosi.. .. And I'm talking about all those things because I still believe we have a little bit of the First Amendment left." A Nov. 2 article by Jones criticized Hillary Clinton for bringing up Lake's dismissive attitude to the Pelosi attack and tried to invoke a "point of clarification" to defend Lake:

Former Senator and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton joined MSNBC's Joy Reid Tuesday night in demonizing Republicans -- not just individuals, but the "whole" party.

Reid mentioned the attack on Paul Pelosi by someone she described as having "sort of (a) right-wing conspiracy theory mind."

Clinton followed the leftist’s lead:

"I don't see Republicans running for the Congress or governors in many other different positions taking down their violent ads, or I don't see them curbing their rhetoric," she said:

"You played something from Marjorie Taylor Greene, who was calling for the death, because of treason, for Speaker Pelosi.

"The level of just plain crazy, violent hate rhetoric coming out of Republicans -- you played something from the candidate, the Republican candidate for governor in Arizona. I want viewers, I want voters to stop and ask themselves, would we trust somebody who is stirring up these violent feelings, who is pointing fingers, scapegoating, making a joke about a violent attack on Paul Pelosi?

"Why would you trust that person to have power over you, your family, your business, your community? So, I want to take this a step further away from the incident, that terrible incident with Paul Pelosi, and broaden it out, because what we have with the rhetoric coming from the Republican candidates, from their party right now is so disturbing.

Jones huffed in response:

Point of clarification: Republican Kari Lake, running for Arizona governor, did not make a joke about the attack on Paul Pelosi, although liberal media outlets accused her of "mocking" the attack.

In remarks about school safety at a campaign stop in Scottsdale, here's what Lake said:

"Nancy Pelosi, well, she’s got protection when she’s in D.C. — apparently her house doesn’t have a lot of protection," Lake said, stating the obvious.

Lake’s audience laughed, and that gave rise to reports that Lake was "joking" about the attack on Pelosi. Lake continued: "If our lawmakers can have protection, if our politicians can have protection, if our athletes, then certainly the most important people in our lives — our children — should have protection."

That doesn't make Lake look any better, but it's clear that Jones will bend over backwards to try to clean up offensive remarks by Republicans.

Jones also stayed true to repeating Republican talking points by using an article the next day to invoke the exact same distraction its Media Research Center parent did regarding the alleged assailant:

The U.S. Justice Department on Monday released a federal criminal complaint and supporting affidavit against David DePape, the homeless man who attacked Paul Pelosi with a hammer after smashing his way into the Pelosi's San Francisco house.

But of all the facts detailed in the eight-page complaint/affidavit, this one was missing: DePape was in this country illegally.

[...]

But the first words of the Oct. 31 DOJ news release announcing the federal charges say this: "A California man was charged today with assault and attempted kidnapping in violation of federal law in connection with the break-in at the residence of Nancy and Paul Pelosi in San Francisco on Friday."

San Francisco is a sanctuary city.

Jones didn't explain how DePape being in the country illegally somehow made him a violent felon. She also didn't highlight the details on how that happened, which don't mesh with the right-wing "sanctuary city" rhetoric Jones was invoking: He overstayed a travel visa from Canada he received in 2008 -- meaning that Donald Trump likely had an opportunity to expel DePape during his presidency but did not.


Posted by Terry K. at 12:58 AM EST
Tuesday, November 22, 2022
CNS Uses Whataboutism And Whining To Deflect from Paul Pelosi Attack
Topic: CNSNews.com

Mimicking its Media Research Center parent, CNSNews.com reacted to the violent hammer attack on Paul Pelosi, husband of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, by complaining that Republican anti-Pelosi rhetoric was being blamed mixed with whataboutism. The first article referencing the attack was an Oct. 31 piece by Susan Jones complaining that a Democratic senator referenced "election deniers" in condemning the attack:

Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) is among the many Americans condemning the violent attack on Paul Pelosi. And she laid some of the blame on supporters of Donald Trump, who "have been expanding into our politics."

"This has to end," Klobuchar told NBC's "Meet the Press."

"And there are several things we can do from the security standpoint, which I'm happy to share with you...but it is also about making sure we don't add more election deniers into our political system."

Host Chuck Todd asked Klobuchar, "What's the bigger challenge, getting Republican leaders to deescalate or figuring out how to get these tech companies to stop amplifying this garbage?"

"They're both humongous challenges," Klobuchar said:

Jones became a one-person content mill after that, following this article literally just eight minutes later with an article quoting Vice President Kamala Harris' condemnation of the attack while weirdly leading with President Biden saying that Harris is "making me look good." And 20 minutes after that, Jones cranked out an article repeating Biden's condemnation of the attack and adding that "you can’t condemn the violence unless you condemn those people who continue to argue the election was not real, that it’s being stolen, that all the — all the malarkey that’s being put out there to undermine democracy." An hour or so later, she moved to documenting Republican whining that they're being blaming for fomenting the attack, while sneering at another critic:

Republican Party Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel said it's "unfair" for the Washington Post to blame "Republicans' increasingly violent and threatening rhetoric" for the hammer attack on Paul Pelosi.

In an op-ed published Saturday, the Post said: "For many Democrats, the attack on Nancy Pelosi’s husband represents the all-but-inevitable conclusion of Republicans’ increasingly violent and threatening rhetoric toward their political opponents — a phenomenon that escalated under former president Donald Trump."

"Well, I think that's unfair," McDaniel told "Fox News Sunday."

[...]

MSNBC host Mika Brzezinski, her voice quivering with rage, took her cue from the Washington Post on Monday, saying that “years of Republican propaganda and Trump-fueled fascism led 42-year-old David DePape to break into Nancy Pelosi's San Francisco home, with the intent to harm her."

"There is no mischaracterizing what happened," Brzezinski said: "Are we to insist this attack was not the direct result of the dangerous, violent rhetoric we have heard from Donald Trump's Republican party over the last six years? The deranged man who violently assaulted Paul Pelosi got his idea from somewhere...

Jones didn't explain why it was somehow bad form for Brzezinski to be "quivering with rage" over the attack.

Later that day, Craig Bannister served up the whataboutism:

On Sunday, Sen. Rand Paul’s (R-Ky.) wife responded to a flashback video tweet recalling how one MSNBC host made light of a 2017 assault that blindsided her husband and left him with six broken ribs.

After a vicious attack on House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s (D-Calif.) husband on Friday, Jason Howerton posted the flashback video in anticipation of left-wing media attempts to blame the attack on Paul Pelosi on right-wing rhetoric:

“I remember when @RandPaul was viciously attacked and an MSNBC anchor accidentally let her true feelings come out: ‘...the incident that left Senator Rand Paul with six broken ribs, this might be one of my favorite stories...’"

Kelley Paul replied:

“I do too, @kasie. I was caring for Rand as he struggled to breathe in terrible pain as you called his attack and injuries ‘one of my favorite stories’ on air. Yet you still have a job.”

While Bannister plucked the "one of my favorite stories" quote out of context to manufacture right-wing outrage, he did surprisingly include the full statement by the anchor in question, Kasie Hunt -- who, it turns out, said it was one of her "favorite stories" because "the first assault on a sitting U.S. senator in decades" involved a dispute with a neighbor over lawn care, not politics.

Melanie Arter served up more mundane Republican denunciation of the attack:

For her first article on Nov. 1, Jones went to the whataboutism well to whine about heated Republican rhetoric being blamed for the attack, while making sure to describe the alleged attacker as an "deranged, homeless nudist" in an effort to further distance Republicans from him:

Democrat [sic] activists, particularly those with cable TV platforms, berated Republicans on Monday for stoking the violence unleashed by a deranged, homeless nudist on Paul Pelosi, who is recovering from hammer blows to the head and body.

Not so fast, said Republican lawmakers Steve Scalise and Rand Paul, both of them badly injured at different times by people opposed to their conservative politics.

"I mean, there's an eagerness on the left to make this political and immediately to start blaming Republicans, but where's the sympathy, even from the left, for Paul Pelosi?" Sen. Rand Paul asked.

[...]

"Laura, my thoughts and prayers are with Paul Pelosi," Rep. Steve Scalise (R-La.) told Fox News's Laura Ingraham Monday night. "[W]e need to be praying and hoping that he fully comes out of this and we stand up against any kind of violence, that is something I have been hearing loud and clear from all ends of the political spectrum, as it should be.

Jones served up further whining from a Republican candidate:

Arizona Republican gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake says she's being "attacked by the media," because "I'm speaking the truth" about topics that a leftist media has "prohibited."

"You know, you can't talk about vaccines. You can't talk about elections," Lake told Fox News's Tucker Carlson on Monday night:

"You can't talk about Paul Pelosi, now you can't talk about Nancy Pelosi, and you can't talk about the elections, and you can't talk about COVID. And I'm talking about all those things because I still believe we have a little bit of the First Amendment left."

Lake said another thing the media won't talk about is illegal immigration and its effect on Americans:

She noted that the man suspected of breaking into her opponent's campaign headquarters is an illegal alien, but "you can't say that now because you can't talk about that. It's insensitive. And the press won't report that.

Jones didn't mention that Lake is an election denier of the type Klobuchar warned about. Bannister wrote up whining and whataboutism of the Fox News variety:

The husband of the House Speaker was brutally attacked, and all Democrats and their media cohorts can talk about is how they want to blame the attack on conservatives, in order to influence the midterm elections, Fox News Channel late-night host Greg Gutfeld said Monday.

In the opening monologue of “Gutfeld!,” the comedian-commentator mocked the left’s lone obsession regarding the vicious home-invasion assault on Paul Pelosi: scoring political points.

While Democrats and liberal media are desperately trying to tie the home-invasion attack on House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s (D-Calif.) husband to Make-America-Great-Again (“MAGA”) extremists and criticism of liberal politicians, Republicans are actually focused on the issue of crime, like the one committed against Paul Pelosi, Gutfeld said:

[...]

“It’s MAGA extremists behind this - because they always attract illegal alien nudists who live in school buses, who think they’re Jesus Christ,” Gutfeld mocked.

But, the people freaking out never mention attacks on conservatives, Gutfeld noted: “Remember how many jokes were made about Rand Paul getting his ribs broken, ‘Ha, Ha, Ha.’”

Bannister contributed even more Fox News-assisted whataboutism in a Nov. 7 post:

On Sunday, President Joe Biden claimed that his party never glorifies violence, ignoring times in recent years when prominent Democrats have been criticized for doing just that.

Speaking at a campaign event supporting the reelection of Democrat New York Governor Kathy Hochul, Pres. Biden said he couldn’t recall another time since the Civil War “where violence is condoned.”

Biden accused Republicans of inciting violence and engaging in dangerous rhetoric. He also accused unnamed Republicans of “making fun of” and “making excuses” for, the recent, brutal, home-invasion assault on House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s (D-Calif.) husband, Paul – but, provided no examples:

[...]

However, on Sunday, Fox News recalled just some of instances when prominent Democrats have appeared to support violence, based on their political goals:

The first alleged example Bannister noted was "Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) threatened Supreme Court Justices Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh in 2020 during a pro-choice rally." In fact, Schumer merely said in that rally that right-wing justices "have released the whirlwind and you will pay the price." There was no endorsement of violence in that statement.


Posted by Terry K. at 4:52 PM EST
Updated: Tuesday, November 22, 2022 10:20 PM EST
Monday, November 21, 2022
CNS Complains Conservative Writer Won't Hate Transgender People
Topic: CNSNews.com

Micky Wootten grumbled in an Oct. 27 CNSNews.com article:

As the government of Florida seeks to clarify its state guidelines on how to treat minors experiencing gender dysphoria, The Bulwark published an article criticizing the “authoritarian” Governor Ron DeSantis (R) for seeking to prohibit what they call “gender affirming care” for minors.

"What’s happening in Florida has nothing to do with science; it’s all about fueling political polarization," writes Alberto Cairo in The Bulwark. "Ron DeSantis is a man of theoconservative and authoritarian inclinations, as his rhetoric and actions suggest, and he has presidential ambitions. He’s also a keen observer of what his most ardent supporters want, such as the desire to attack those whose existence they find offensive while claiming that they do it for our own good."

On April 20, 2022, Florida Surgeon General Joseph Lapado released the following guidelines on the “Treatment of Gender Dysphoria for Children and Adolescents”:

[...]

Cairo calls Lapado a “political hack of a surgeon general”and claims his guidelines are “part of a broader campaign against transgender care which at times has been motivated by ignorance, zealotry, and rank partisan politics.”

Additionally, the article claims that Lapado’s guidelines run contrary to “current standards of care used by all major medical organizations,” and are “based on cherry-picked and misrepresented evidence.”

Wootten is being sloppy here -- the Florida surgeon general's name is Joseph Ladapo, not Lapado. He also ignored evidence that Ladapo, is, in fact, a political hack.

While Wootten didn't disprove anything Cairo wrote and acknowledged that Cairo backed up his assertions with facts, that wasn't good enough for him, because he bashed Cairo for not acknowledging claims that favor anti-trans activists like him and, even worse has a bias because he understands as a parent what the "experience" is like:

The author of the article makes clear that he has a personal relationship to the matter: “Let me tell you what youth gender-affirming care looks like based on my experience as a parent: It is a long, cautious, and individualized process that involves teams of therapists, psychologists, medical doctors, patients, and families.”

The author does not mention the fact that England’s NHS has recently opted to abandon its model of providing gender-affirming care to minors.

The author also does not mention information gathered by the Swedish National Board of Health and Welfare (NBHW), which led the country to reverse its course on its transgender care policies in February 2022.

This information identified a rising number of de-transitioners that experience post-transition regret, and found the risks of hormonal interventions to outweigh the potential benefits.

Again: Wootten made no effort to disprove anything Cairo wrote -- he was simply mad that an opposing opinion wasn't offered. Of course, if Wootten really wants to make sure commentary isn't one-sided, there is plenty of that at his employer.

Wootten also censored the fact that the Bulwark is a conservative-leaning website -- presumably to not have to admit that right-wing anti-LGBTQ activism is failing.


Posted by Terry K. at 7:59 PM EST
NEW ARTICLE: CNS Gets Burned By Kanye
Topic: CNSNews.com
Like its Media Research Center parent, CNSNews.com used to hate Kanye West until he started spouting right-wing-friendly talking points -- and it was similarly reluctant to criticize Ye's turn toward anti-Semitism. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 4:00 PM EST
Sunday, November 20, 2022
CNS Promotes GOP Attacks On Biden For Using SPR To Reduce Gas Prices
Topic: CNSNews.com

The oil industry helpmates at CNSNews.com always made sure to blame President Biden for rising gas prices despite never offering any actual proof that policies like discontinuing the Keystone XL pipeline played any role in that. So when Biden released oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve in a bid to lower prices, CNS attacked him for that too. Susan Jones huffed in an Oct. 6 "news" article:

President Joe Biden has been draining the U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve at a rapid clip, and he's not done yet.

On Wednesday, on the way to Florida, Biden's spokeswoman Karine Jean-Pierre announced that the president "is determined" to make progress in bringing down gasoline prices:

"At the president's direction, the Department of Energy will deliver another 10 million barrels from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve to the market next month as part of the historic 180-million-barrel release the President ordered back in March. And the President will continue to direct SPR releases as necessary," she said.

Whoa, say critics, including Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.).

"Well, it's called the Strategic Petroleum Reserve. It's not the political petroleum reserve," Cotton told Fox News's Laura Ingraham Wednesday night.

Jones then complained that Biden was inaccurate about how the SPR oil was being released:

On November 23, 2021 -- three months before Russia invaded Ukraine -- President Biden announced that he would release 50 million barrels of oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve to lower "elevated gas prices at the pump" and home-heating bills.

Then, on March 31, 2022, after the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Biden announced that he was authorizing the release of 1 million barrels of oil a day -- over 180 million barrels -- from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve for six months.

"This is a wartime bridge to increase oil supply until production ramps up later this year," Biden said at the time. "And it is by far the largest release from our national reserve in our history. It will provide a historic amount of supply for a historic amount of time — a six-month bridge to the fall."

The Energy Department said the latest 10 million barrel release is part of Biden's earlier, 180-million barrel announcement. So the SPR was not depleted by a million barrels for 180 days, as Biden said it would be.

The same day, Melanie Arter uncritically quoted Republican Sen. Bill Hagerty repeating the same RNC-assigned talking point: "What is supposed to be the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, what they're calling it now I think is the Strategic Political Reserve, because their eyes are on the November elections. They’re trying to get gas prices down, and that’s what this is all about. They're out pleading with Iran, with Venezuela." Hagerty didn't explain why it's a bad idea to want to lower gas prices.

Jones grumbled in a Oct. 17 article that a Biden administration official pointed out that there's plenty of oil in the SPR:

"There are still 400 million barrels of oil in the Strategic Reserve. It is more than half full," Jared Bernstein, a member of the White House Council of Economic Advisers, told "Fox News Sunday."

"I think people don't quite have the capacity number in their head," Bernstein said. "And the largest draw that we've ever done that President Biden presided over in March is 180 million barrels.

"So, the fact is, there is capacity to use the SPR to deal with some of the energy shocks we're seeing in the world. But I'm not saying we will. That's up to the president to decide; he hasn't made that decision yet," Bernstein said.

[...]

At the end of September, the U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve had dropped to a 38-year low, with 416,389,000 barrels of oil -- 34.74 percent below the 638,086,000 barrels at the end of January 2021, when Joe Biden became president. The SPR's current maximum capacity is 714,000,000 barrels.

An Oct. 20 article by Jones noted Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm pointing out that the U.S. bveing "on a wartime footing" justified an additional SPR release, then peddled more RNC talking points:

President Biden, in announcing the SPR release on Wednesday, dismissed Republican claims that the move was a politically motivated bid to lower gas prices ahead of the midterm election.

“Look, it’s makes sense,” Biden told reporters after making the announcement at the White House. “I’ve been doing this for how long now? It’s not politically motivated at all.”

Arter followed that with an article the same day on how Biden "denied Wednesday that his decision to release an additional 15 million barrels of oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve is politically motivated," and intern Lauren Shank added her own article on White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre saying that "the Strategic Petroleum Reserve was created for this time, for a moment just like this, when there is a supply disruption that is – has been caused by Putin’s war." But Jones returned to parroting Republican talking points:

"The Strategic Petroleum Reserve exists for national security," former Vice President Mike Pence told Fox News on Wednesday, after President Joe Biden announced another drawdown – 15 million barrels -- in an attempt to bring gasoline prices down before the midterm election.

Biden said the move was not politically motivated.

But Pence said the drawdown "doesn't make any sense."

Patrick Goodenough wrote an article that day headlined "Rubio: ‘Oil Reserves Do Not Exist to Win Midterms; They Exist to Help This Country in an Emergency'" -- even though the first part of the article repeated Biden's stance on releasing more oil from the SPR and the Rubio quote didn't appear until the 11th paragraph of the article.

Goodenough used an Oct. 27 article to tout a Saudi Arabian official taking a swipe at the Biden administration tapping into the SPR as a response to the country reducing oil production:

As the Biden administration ponders the path ahead in its strained relationship with Riyadh over oil production cuts, the Saudi energy minister has warned that decisions by some to use emergency oil stocks “may become painful in the months to come.”

Abdulaziz bin Salman said that “people” were using emergency oil reserves to manipulate markets rather than their intended purpose of mitigating shortages of supply.

In a further apparent swipe at the United States, he insinuated that the U.S. reaction to the October 5 decision by OPEC+ to reduce oil production by two million barrels a day had been an immature one.

The comments by the minister, at a major investment forum in Riyadh with a number of Americans present, are a further sign that the kingdom is not backing down in the dispute with one of its most important and longstanding allies.

Jones fretted again in a Nov. 4 article -- echoing Republican talking points, of course -- that Biden used the SPR to lower gas prices:

Ahead of the midterm election, President Biden often takes credit for reducing gasoline prices, but the reduction comes at the expense of the nation's emergency oil stockpile.

According to the most recent data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration, the Strategic Petroleum Reserve has just dipped below 400 million barrels, a low not seen since May 1984.

For the week ending October 28, there were 399,792,000 barrels of oil in the SPR, a 37.34 percent decrease from the 638,086,000 barrels in the SPR when Biden took office. The maximum capacity is 714,000,000 barrels.

The chart below shows the Biden drain, which hasn't stopped.

Jones then rushed to the defense of the oil industry, as CNS often does:

President Biden, meanwhile, continues to vilify the U.S. oil industry as greedy, even anti-American.

On the campaign trail in New Mexico Thursday, Biden again threatened to hit oil companies with a windfall profits tax:

"Putin’s invasion of Ukraine sent gas prices soaring around the world," Biden said.

[...]

Biden came into office vowing to “end fossil fuel, and I am not going to cooperate with them,” he said in 2019.

The American Petroleum Institute this week released a plan to "restore U.S. energy leadership."

CNS has previously done stenography for the API to help it deflect from valid criticism that oil industry profits are obscenely high.


Posted by Terry K. at 11:27 AM EST
Updated: Monday, November 21, 2022 8:23 PM EST
Friday, November 18, 2022
CNS Runs 2 Press Releases On Trump Receiving The Same Award
Topic: CNSNews.com

During the Trump years, CNSNews.com had a bad habit of devoting multiiple articles to pushing the same exact pro-Trump talking point. That hasn't stopoed just because Trump is no longer in office. Craig Bannister wrote in an Oct. 19 article:

Former President Donald Trump will be awarded the prestigious Theodor Herzl Medallion by the Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) at its upcoming gala.

[...]

Trump is being honored for his numerous pro-Israel actions as president, which include moving the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem, recognizing Israel’s sovereignty over the Golan Heights, pulling the U.S. out of the Iran nuclear agreement, praying at Jerusalem’s Western Wall, and brokering Middle East peace accords.

Other honorees at the event include U.S. House Minority Leader Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), who will receive a “Defender of Israel” award. The list of distinguished award-presenters includes esteemed Harvard Law Professor Emeritus Alan Dershowitz.

Bannister linked to a 2017 article by Patrick Goodenough -- a major Trump-fluffer on Israel-related things -- who gushed that "Images of President Trump touching the ancient stones of the Western Wall in Jerusalem will send a strong signal to the Palestinians and their Muslim allies who have used U.N. forums to contest Jewish claims and heritage at the location of the biblical Temples."

This article, however, was apparently deemed insufficiently fluff-worthy of Trump, so intern Lauren Shank was tasked with writing about this same award again -- with more boilerplate quotes from ZOA officials -- in a Nov. 3 article:

The Zionist Organization of America (ZOA), the leading major American Jewish organization defending Israel and the Jewish people, will award former President Donald J. Trump the Theodor Herzl Gold Medallion for his “unprecedented accomplishments on behalf of Israel and the Jewish-American community” at its Nov. 13 Superstar Gala in New York City.

“ZOA rarely awards the Theodor Herzl Gold Medallion,” ZOA National President Morton A. Klein said in a press release. “It has been presented only to other renowned world leaders and dignitaries like Lord Balfour, Winston Churchill, Harry Truman, David Ben-Gurion, Golda Meir, Menachem Begin, and Sheldon G. Adelson.”

“As a champion of Israel and the Jewish people, President Trump is certainly worthy of being in that company,” said Klein.

Trump’s achievement of forging the Abraham Accords, which established peace between Israel and Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates, Morocco and Sudan, would merit the honor alone, ZOA Board Chairman David Schoen said.

CNS has not explained why it felt compelled to devote two press release-esque articles to Trump receiving the same award when one would have more than sufficed.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:02 AM EST
Updated: Friday, November 18, 2022 1:39 AM EST
Thursday, November 17, 2022
CNS Is Still (Mostly) Censoring Herschel Walker's Abortion Scandals
Topic: CNSNews.com

We've documented how CNSNews.com completely censored the story of Republican Senate candidate (and ontime coverage favorite) Herschel Walker paying for a girlfriend's abortion. It continued to do censor it -- with only a couple brief, passing mentions -- in the runup to the midterm elections.

An Oct. 20 article by Micky Wootten on a debate between Walker and his Democratic incumbent opponent, Raphael Warnock, completely censored any mention of Walker's abortion scandal, even though it was discussed during the debate. Instead, Wootten deceptively kept his story focused on financial issues, noting that they "clashed over student loan debt but apparently agreed that there should not be a federal minimum wage."

An Oct. 27 article by Melanie Arter provided the first mention in a "news" article of Walker's abortion scandal -- which came only after a second woman came forward to say Walker paid her for an abortion. But the main focus of her article was promoting how "Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said Wednesday that the reason why liberals are so intent on defeating Hershel Walker’s bid to become the next senator from Georgia is because if Walker 'becomes a Republican, maybe every other young child in America of color might want to be a Republican.'" It wasn't until the third paragraph that Arter noted that "Walker told Fox News’ 'Hannity' that the latest allegation against him that he pressured a woman into getting an abortion is 'a lie.'"

A Nov. 4 article by Lauren Shank supplied the only other pre-election reference to the scandal. Ity was effectively a press relesase for a so-called study by CNS' parent, the Media Research Center, complaining about supposedly "negative" coverage of Republican candidates, an example of which was "anonymous and unverified allegations that GOP candidate Herschel Walker years ago paid for two women’s abortions, charges that Walker vehemently denied."

An anonymously written Nov. 9 article on the Walker-Warnock race going to a runoff went back to censoring the abortion scandal and offering Walker puffery instead: ">Walker, a Georgia native, played running back for the University of Georgia and won the Heisman Trophy in 1982. He then played professional football in the USFL and the NFL."

CNS' mission statement claims that it "endeavors to fairly present all legitimate sides of a story." Yet again, it's refusing to live up to its own words.


Posted by Terry K. at 6:37 PM EST
Updated: Thursday, November 17, 2022 8:10 PM EST
Wednesday, November 16, 2022
CNS Continues To Shill For Oil Industry Lobbyists
Topic: CNSNews.com

CNSNews.com has been a reliable shill for the oil industry, and it conintues to be one for the puropse of attacking President Biden. Susan Jones served as stenographer for the oil industry's lobbying group in an Oct. 5 article:

News that OPEC+ has cut oil production by 2 million barrels a day is "really bad news for American consumers," an oil industry executive told Fox News on Wednesday.

"Well, no one should be cheering this news," said Mike Sommers, president of the American Petroleum Institute. "But the truth of the matter is that dependency on foreign countries for American oil and gas is a choice. And it's a choice this administration has made repeatedly, unfortunately, with the policies that they have pursued so far."

News of the OPEC production cut comes just as record releases from the U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve -- ordered by President Biden -- have stopped.

[...]

Sommers told Fox News, "We should be looking under our feet for the resources that we have here. We can produce these products here. We can share these products throughout the world during a time of war. We have that choice. And we can do it."

Jones helped API go on the attack against Biden for calling out excessive oil industry profits in a Nov. 1 article:

President Joe Biden, a lifelong politician with no background in running a business, is once again blasting oil companies, even threatening them, for earning large profits.

"I think it's outrageous what their — the — the size of the profit," Biden said on Monday:

[...]

The American Petroleum Industry issued the following statement in response:

"Rather than taking credit for price declines and shifting blame for price increases, the Biden administration should get serious about addressing the supply and demand imbalance that has caused higher gas prices and created long-term energy challenges.

"Today, the President proposed to raise taxes on the U.S. natural gas and oil industry that is competing globally to produce the fuels Americans need every single day. Oil companies do not set prices—global commodities markets do.

"Increasing taxes on American energy discourages investment in new production, which is the exact opposite of what is needed. American families and businesses are looking to lawmakers for solutions, not campaign rhetoric.”

"Analysis of a windfall profits tax established in 1980 have found that it decreased domestic energy production and increased reliance on imported oil. According to the Congressional Research Service, the tax reduced domestic production by as much as 8 percent from 1980 to 1988 when it was repealed in part because “it made the United States more dependent on foreign oil."

What President Biden did not say is that oil companies experienced record losses during the COVID pandemic, when oil prices collapsed.

Jones censored the fact that record oil company profits have far exceeded pandemic-related losses. Rather than lgoing beyond copy-and-pasting a API statement to probe why oil companies aren't keeping the same profit margins they had pre-pandemic -- or even question API's suggestion that Biden is to blame for higher oil prices -- she parroted her employer's anti-Biden partisan agenda again:

President Biden is a green energy/climate change acolyte. Even during his presidential campaign, he declared his intention to transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy, which discouraged investment by the oil industry.

In a March 2020 debate, before becoming president, Biden said: "Number one, no more subsidies for fossil fuel industry. No more drilling on federal lands. No more drilling, including offshore. No ability for the oil industry to continue to drill, period, ends, number one."

As recently as this past May, President Biden hailed higher gas prices as an "incredible transition."

"When it comes to the gas prices, we're going through an incredible transition that is taking place that, God willing, when it's over, we'll be stronger and the world will be stronger and less reliant on fossil fuels when this is over," Biden said.

Putting lobbyists and partisan narratives before good journalism is not a good look.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:07 PM EST

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