ABC, NBC Ignore Obama’s West Coast Fundraising Trip Amid Turmoil in Ukraine and Israel
ABC’s Good Morning America and NBC’s Today continued to ignore President Obama’s fundraising trips across the country Wednesday morning as he spent Tuesday raising money for Democrats in California and Washington state. While CBS This Morning did mention that Obama was on the West Coast for fundraisers and that it has drawn criticism from Republicans, it lasted for only 27 seconds.
Among the news stories covered at the top of the 8:00 a.m. hour, co-host Gayle King read a news brief in which she stated that “President Obama faces criticism this morning for following through with a fund-raising trip to the West Coast.” King mentioned that Obama made stops in two states to raise money for Democrats and added that: “Many Republicans say that his priorities should be focused on the tensions with Russia and the turmoil in the Middle East.” [MP3 audio here]
Further, she went on to state that Obama canceled an appearance on late-night talk show host Jimmy Kimmel’s show and cited a White House official who said that “the president could run the country from Air Force One for days if he needed to.”
An article from Politico posted on Tuesday morning reported that, in addition to the events yesterday, President Obama will attend an additional Democratic National Committee (DNC) fund-raisers in Los Angeles Wednesday and Thursday.
The inability of the networks to mention any criticism of the president for this latest trip is nothing new as the three major broadcast networks morning and evening newscasts failed miserably to mention any of Obama’s fundraising expeditions within the last week. Prior to today, there were only three mentions of his itinerary with two mentions on CBS This Morning (one of which referred to it as a “political trip to New York”), and one each on CBS Evening News and NBC Nightly News.
Instead, the networks have been filling their time with all sorts of praise for the Obama family. On Tuesday, CBS This Morning praised President Obama’s remarks on race and NBC’s Today aired a gushing interview on Monday with Michelle Obama that was conducted by weatherman Al Roker.
With his appearances at events to raise money for Democrats to defeat Republicans in the upcoming midterm elections, President Obama is making clear now more than ever how he would like to spend his time while international crises are raging on multiple fronts.
The complete transcript from the July 23 news brief on CBS This Morning is transcribed below.
CBS This Morning
July 23, 2014
8:06 a.m. Eastern
[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: Fundraising Flack; President Criticized for West Coast Trip]
GAYLE KING: President Obama faces criticism this morning for following through with a fund-raising trip to the West Coast. The president made stops in California and Washington to help fellow Democrats. Many Republicans say that his priorities should be focused on the tensions with Russia and the turmoil in the Middle East. President Obama did cancel a surprise appearance on Jimmy Kimmel's program last night. A White House official points out that the president could run the country from Air Force One for days if he needed to.
— Curtis Houck is News Analyst at the Media Research Center. Follow Curtis Houck on Twitter.