CNS Bashes Biden's LGBT Nominees
CNSNews.com irrelevantly illustrated stories about transportation secretary nominee Pete Buttigieg with photos of he and his husband kissing -- and it went totally transphobic on HHS official nominee Rachel Levine.
By Terry Krepel
When Pete Buttigieg ran for president last year, CNSNews.com regularly attacked him with an emphasis on gay-bashing. With Joe Biden nominating Buttigieg as his transportation secretary, CNS went on the attack again -- and, again, with a side of gay-bashing.
CNS bizarrely felt the need to flood the zone regarding Buttigieg's nomination, with a whopping five articles in two days:
The first, anonymously written article first quoted Nancy Pelosi calling the nomination historic, then making sure to add, "Buttigieg, a homosexual, is married to Chasten Buttigieg." The article was irrelevantly illustrated by picture of Buttigieg kissing Chasten.
The second, by Susan Jones, made a point of noting that Buttigieg has "no particular credentials in the transportation industry" and portrayed Buttigieg stating that "I proposed to my husband Chasten in an airport terminal" as his claim to transportation expertise. The article also included a picture of Buttigieg and his spouse, which it at least somewhat germane to the article's content.
The third, also by Jones, dismissed Biden's call for a "railroad revolution" during his Buttigieg announcement as a "back-to-the-future comment" and once again claimed that Buttigieg "didn't have any solid transportation credentials to highlight."
The fourth, by Craig Bannister, omitted Buttigieg's first name while scaremongering that "The man apparent President-Elect Joe Biden wants to head up the Department of Transportation has repeatedly called for a tax on carbon, which would result in an increase in the cost of gasoline at the fuel pump. And, carbon is just one of the things Buttigieg has said he wants to tax."
The fifth, by managing editor Michael W. Chapman, combined his usual gay-bashing with implicit criticism of a liberal Catholic priest who praised Buttigieg's nomination:
Although former South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg is a practicing homosexual "married" to another man, influential Catholic priest Rev. James Martin, SJ, praised him and congratulated President-elect Joe Biden for picking the "openly gay" Buttigieg to be the next Secretary of Transportation.
The article was illustrated with a shot of a Time magazine cover featuring Buttigieg with his spouse.
Four days later, on Dec. 21, Jones did an article about a Fox News appearance by Buttigieg, making sure to assert once again that "as a former mayor, Buttigieg has no particular experience in transportation or infrastructure."
CNS wasn't done going after Buttigieg after the initial announcement, though. An anonymously written Dec. 29 article was devoted to noting that "sent out a tweet on December 26, wishing people a 'joyful and meaningful Kwanzaa,'" for the sole apparent purpose of using a picture of Buttigieg hugging his spouse. The anonymous writer did not elaborate on the purpose of using that irrelevant picture with this article.
CNS didn't do much on Buttigieg around his Senate nomination hearing. A Jan. 22 article by Jones highlighted Buttigieg's statement that workers who would be employed building the Keystone XL Pipeline that Biden canceled shortly after taking office could be employed in other "good paying union jobs," and a Feb. 10 op-ed by Randal O'Toole of the libertarian Cato Institute attacked Buttigieg's desire for the U.S. to be a leader in high-speed rail, which he declared to be "obsolete." The only reference to Buttigieg being approved by the full senate was buried in an anonymously written Feb. 11 article whose main (and irrelevant) complaint that one of the House managers for Donald Trump's impeachment trial is also the chairman of the Congressional LGBTQ+ Equality Caucus.
But on Feb. 22, CNS felt the need to obsess over Buttigieg's sexuality again. An anonymously written article noted that Buttigieg "has tweeted out a video of himself having an exchange with a person about the basic philosophy he brings to transportation in the United States." The original headline rad "Trans Secretary Pete Explains: ‘What About Bikes, Scooters, Wheelchairs...Roads Aren’t Only for Vehicles’" -- seemingly suggesting that Buttigieg was somehow transgender, which CNS hates even more than gayness -- and accompanied the article with, yes, a photo of Buttigieg and his husband kissing:
CNS later changed the headline, swapping out "Trans Secretary Pete" for the more conventional "Transportation Secretary Buttigieg" and replaced the irrelevant kissing photo with a more normal stock shot of Buttigieg.
CNSNews.com found its two great hatreds of late -- transgender people and Biden's cabinet nominees -- merging into a single story. A Jan. 19 article by Melanie Arter introduced it, making sure to find an unflattering screenshot to illustrate it:
President-elect Joe Biden nominated Pennsylvania Health Secretary Rachel Levine to be assistant secretary of the Department Health and Human Services on Tuesday.
Slightly over three hours later, Arter attacked Levine:
Transgender Pennsylvania Health Secretary Rachel Levine, who was tapped by President-elect Joe Biden on Tuesday to be assistant HHS secretary, faced scrutiny last year for moving her own mother out of a nursing home after ordering all nursing homes and long-term care facilities to accept COVID patients from hospitals.
In fact, Levine's mother was not in a nursing home but, rather, in a personal care facility that is regulated separately and under Levine's jurisdiction as state HHS director.
Arter also repeated criticism of Levine from a Republican state senator who claimed that moving COVID patients from hospitals to long-term-care facilities caused coronavirus to spread there, killing patients. But Arter censored the state government's response, that doing so freed up beds in hospitals for more COVID patients and that the virus' spread in long-term-care facilities is more likely due to asymptomatic employees.
CNS editor Terry Jeffrey went transphobic on Levine in his Jan. 20 column:
When Democratic Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf named Levine his state's "physician general" in 2015, the Philadelphia Inquirer ran a story explaining the doctor's background.
In his Jan. 29 column, dishonest Catholic Bill Donohue claimed that a Catholic media outlet's Twitter account was suspended after it described Levine as "a biological man identifying as a transgender woman," insisting that this was "innocuous speech" and ranting, "the free speech rights of all Catholic media outlets and websites are in jeopardy. Twitter is a menace to freedom. It needs to be reined in by the Congress."
Tony Perkins referenced the incident in his Feb. 2 column, adding, "It's incredible how far we've come since November. Now, Big Tech can't even co-exist with the facts!"
When Republican Sen. Rand Paul harshly questioned Levine during her nomination hearing, CNS' Susan Jones cheered it:
Unafraid to address the transgender issue staring lawmakers in the face, Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) on Thursday asked Dr. Rachel Levine (nee Richard) if she believes "minors are capable of making such a life-changing decision as changing one's sex."
Actually, Paul was merely unafraid to lecture and push anti-trans talking points, and Jones ate it up, transcribing every word of his harangue of Levine. Jones apparently decided that Paul's attack was too good to fact-check; had she bothered to do so, she would have learned that, contrary to Paul's assertions, current medical guidelines in the U.S. do not recommend transition-related surgeries for minors.
But when Paul got called out for his harangue, Jones pouted in an article the next day:
It is now offensive and inappropriate in the U.S. Congress for a lawmaker to question a transgender physician about her views on minor children making the decision to change their sex through hormone use and surgery.
CNS rehashed Paul's hostile questioning of Levine in a March 16 article by the mysterious "A. Kim" featuring conservatives attacking the Equality Act (and deliberately misgenders Levine):
On Feb. 25, a Senate confirmation hearing was held for Dr. Rachel Levine, a transgender “woman” (biological male) nominated by President Biden to be assistant secretary of Health and Human Services. During the hearing, Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), a medical doctor, questioned Levine about his left-wing views on sex-change surgery for minors, an issue that would be protected from discrimination under the Equality Act.
Donohue took a swipe at Levine in his March 29 column, justifying Paul's hostile questioning and also misgendering Levine: "Given his status, both physical and professional, it is important to know what his position on sex transitioning is."
When Levine was confirmed by the full Senate for her new job on March 24, however, CNS couldn't be bothered to do a story on it. Apparently, good news about a transgender person isn't news at all at CNS.
Attacking more LGBT nominees
On Tuesday, April 27, Democratic President Joe Biden announced that he had nominated Gina Ortiz Jones to be the Undersecretary of the Air Force, the No. 2 position at that military branch. If confirmed by the U.S. Senate, Jones will be the first openly gay, Filipino woman to serve in that post.
On May 5, Chapman expressed his outrage at other LGBT nominees by highlighting the two LGBT nominees and ignoring the other five nominated at the same time:
In addition to nominating an openly lesbian Filipino woman to serve as the No. 2 at the Air Force, President Biden nominated a transgender "woman" and a lesbian to serve in two other prominent positions at the Department of Defense (DoD).
Chapman's CNS is obsessed with tagging transgender women as "biological males."