Andrea's ObamaCare Plea: "You've Got to Get This for Him;" "We Need Courage"

Vol. 23, No. 6

Andrea's ObamaCare Plea: "You've Got to Get This for Him"


Anchor Andrea Mitchell: "Bottom line, what happens if you don't get health care for this President is - this is really all-or-nothing for the sense of his power, for his legacy. He's invested so much in this, in this first year. You've got to get this for him."
Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD): "Andrea, I agree with you a million percent."
- Exchange on MSNBC's 1pm ET Andrea Mitchell Reports, March 12. [Audio/video (0:19): Windows Media | MP3 audio]

NBC Touts Obama's Road Tour: "We Need Courage"


"During the presidential campaign, candidate Barack Obama often used the phrase 'fired up' to do just that to the crowd. Democrats have been openly wondering when he was going to bring that campaign energy and fire to an issue like health care reform. Today the President chose an event at a quiet Philadelphia suburb to get loud."
- Anchor Brian Williams opening the March 8 NBC Nightly News.


Brian Williams: "President Obama traveled to Ohio for one last campaign-style rally where a shout-out from the audience gave him a chance to road test a new catch phrase: 'We need courage.'"
President Obama: "There's a lot of hand-wringing going on. We hear a lot of people in Washington talking about politics, talking about what this means in November, talking about the poll numbers for Democrats, Republicans."
Woman in audience: "We need courage!"
Obama, to cheers: "We need courage. That's why I came here today. We need courage!"
- NBC Nightly News, March 15.

CBS Insists: Anti-ObamaCare Demonstrators Get "Ugly"


Correspondent Chip Reid: "The closer we get to a vote, the nastier the debate becomes....Outside the Capitol, a few hundred members of the conservative Tea Party movement called on Congress to kill the Democratic health care reform bill as Republicans urged them to keep fighting."
Representative Mike Pence (R-IN): "And you are here to say the American people don't want a government takeover of health care!"
Reid: "Moving inside, they tried to lobby undecided Democrats. At times, it got ugly. [Video shows an office door being closed on group chanting in the corridor.] The angry war of words over health care reform in Washington is echoing across the nation...."
- CBS Evening News, March 16. [Audio/video (0:41): Windows Media | MP3 audio]


"Staff members for Democrats reported orderly, even polite conversations with protesters....'It was like a high school classroom,' an aide to one lawmaker who hosted Tea Partiers noted glumly. 'It was so boring.'"
- Politico's Marin Cogan in a March 17 article about the same event.

Lucky Chinese - Their Dictators Could Just Order ObamaCare


Fill-in moderator Tom Brokaw: "Tom, are we at a kind of turning point in America in terms of being able to make this a functioning country again, or are we dysfunctional?"
New York Times columnist Tom Friedman: "Well, this is what worries me. I've been saying for awhile, Tom, there's only one thing worse than one-party autocracy, the Chinese form of government, and that's one-party democracy. In China, if the leadership can get around to an enlightened decision, it can order it from the top down."
- NBC's Meet the Press, March 14.

Rather: "Articulate" Obama "Couldn't Sell Watermelons"


"Part of the undertow in the coming election is going to be President Obama's leadership. And the Republicans will make a case, and a lot of independents will buy this argument, 'Listen, he just hasn't been, look at the health care bill. It was his number one priority. It took him forever to get it through and he had to compromise it to death.' And a version of, 'Listen, he's a nice person, he's very articulate' - this is what's been used against him - 'but he couldn't sell watermelons if you gave him the state troopers to flag down the traffic.'"
- Ex-CBS Evening News anchor Dan Rather on The Chris Matthews Show, March 7. Three days later, Rather apologized in an op-ed for the Huffington Post blog site: "I'm sorry people took offense." [Audio/video (0:40): Windows Media | MP3 audio]

"Harlem Democrat" Is a Racist Phrase...


"The National Republican Campaign Committee [sic, actually the National Republican Congressional Committee], they issued a very provocative press release over the weekend. They attacked [Representative] Charlie Rangel. And we mentioned Charlie Rangel and [Governor] David Paterson and the problems in New York. But they mention Charlie Rangel as 'the crooked Harlem Democrat.' They could have called him 'the crooked New York Democrat.' They could have called him a 'crooked Democrat.' Why 'crooked Harlem Democrat,' and did you see that as being racially tinged?"
- Anchor David Shuster to former Governor Doug Wilder (D-VA) during the 10am ET hour of MSNBC Live, March 8. [Audio/video (0:34): Windows Media | MP3 audio]

...Except When MSNBC's Own Reporters Use It

"Late last night we received word that 39 Democrats would have joined with Republicans today on a resolution they were offering to strip him of his chairmanship....Blue Dogs, conservative districts, who really saw problems back home in their rural districts in the mountains being associated with a Harlem Democrat who writes the nation's tax laws who a lot of folks say is not paying their taxes. One Blue Dog member told me it would be political suicide for me to support Charlie Rangel."
- MSNBC correspondent Luke Russert on The Ed Show, March 3.

Williams Touts "Gripping" Rant by Kennedy


Brian Williams: "There was a gripping moment this afternoon here in Washington....Congressman Patrick Kennedy, a Democrat who represents Rhode Island, the son of the late Ted Kennedy, got up and gave a loud, emotional and angry speech about U.S. losses in the war, U.S. strategy in the war, then he turned on the news media and how few have bothered to show up to cover the debate."...
Rep. Patrick Kennedy (D-RI), yelling: "The press of the United States is not covering the most significant issue of national importance, and that's the laying of lives down in the nation for the service of our country! It's despicable, the national press corps right now."
- NBC Nightly News, March 10. Kennedy was speaking on behalf of left-wing Democrat Dennis Kucinich's plan to remove all U.S. troops from Afghanistan by December 31; the fringe amendment failed, 356-65. [Audio/video (1:21): Windows Media | MP3 audio]

Republicans: A "Narrow, Little, Nasty, Don't-Do-Anything Party"


"You know Congressman, I've never seen the Republican Party so narrow in its appeal....What do you make of the fact the Republican Party now isn't a party of grand conservatism anymore? It's a party of this narrow, little, nasty, don't-do-anything party."
- MSNBC's Chris Matthews to Congressman John Larson (D-CT), March 15 Hardball. [Audio/video (0:42): Windows Media | MP3 audio]

"Obama Effect" Creating More Compassionate America


Co-host Erica Hill: "There's a new survey you may have seen this weekend in Parade magazine. It indicates America is in the midst of what some are calling a compassion boom. There's been a really big uptick in volunteering...."
Parade contributing editor Emily Listfield: "There's something we call the 'Obama Effect.' People are responding to the President's call to service."
- CBS's The Early Show, March 8.

Bush Lied, People Died


"Good evening. It will go down in history among the events that shaped our times, the decision by President George W. Bush to go to war in Iraq after the United States had been attacked on 9/11 with no direct connection between the two. The United States has paid a heavy price for the war...."
- Brian Williams leading off the March 4 NBC Nightly News, previewing a story about Karl Rove's new book rebutting allegations President Bush "lied us into war."

Left-Wing Activist "Granny D" = Anchorman's "Hero"


"A hero of mine just passed away: Doris Haddock from Dublin, New Hampshire....In the world of politics, Doris was known as 'Granny D.' Eleven years ago, at the age of 89, she decided to walk across the nation to promote campaign finance reform....Granny D was committed to fair and open democracy, and she underscored that you are never too old to raise your voice, take some steps, and make a difference. Doris 'Granny D' Haddock, an American treasure, dead at the age of 100."
- MSNBC 3pm ET anchor David Shuster, March 10.

Ex-New York Times Boss Declares Fox News a Pox on Journalism

"Through clever use of the Fox News Channel and its cadre of raucous commentators, [Roger] Ailes has overturned standards of fairness and objectivity that have guided American print and broadcast journalists since World War II. Yet, many members of my profession seem to stand by in silence as Ailes tears up the rulebook that served this country well as we covered the major stories of the past three generations, from the civil rights revolution to Watergate to the Wall Street scandals....For the first time since the yellow journalism of a century ago, the United States has a major news organization devoted to the promotion of one political party."
- Former New York Times Executive Editor Howell Raines in a March 14 op-ed for the Washington Post.

Quake-Damaged Haiti = "A Republican's Paradise"


"Chile had an earthquake this past week that was 500 times greater than the earthquake in Haiti. But here's the big difference. In Chile, they have various - very serious regulations when it comes to building codes. So a thousand people died, sadly, but a thousand people died with a 500 times greater earthquake. And in Haiti, where there are no building codes, no regulations - a Republican's paradise - a quarter of a million people died."
- Left-wing filmmaker Michael Moore on HBO's Real Time with Bill Maher, March 5. [Audio/video (0:39): Windows Media | MP3 audio]

ABC Drama Derides "Ultra-Conservative Yahoos"


"Senator Robert McCallister" (Rob Lowe): "It's just the conservative purity police trying to purge the party of lily-livered Republican moderates." ...
"Kitty Walker-McCallister," (Calista Flockhart), complaining to her sister: "I am fighting for my political life with a bunch of ultra-conservative yahoos who want my head because you decided to fall in love with a guy who has immigration issues."
- From ABC's drama Brothers and Sisters, March 14. [Audio/video (1:34): Windows Media | MP3 audio]

Biden Bumbles Into the Truth


"Here I am, the first Irish Catholic Vice President in the history of the United States of America. Barack Obama, the first African American in the history of the United States of America. He's hosting a St. Patrick's Day dinner, and I'm here with you all [audience laughter]. Go figure. He's with my base, I'm with his."
- Joe Biden at the Radio and Television Correspondents dinner March 17 as televised on C-SPAN2.

Sign up to receive Notable Quotables  via e-mail.

PUBLISHER: L. Brent Bozell III
EDITORS: Brent H. Baker, Rich Noyes, Tim Graham
NEWS ANALYSTS: Geoff Dickens, Brad Wilmouth, Scott Whitlock, Matthew Balan, and Kyle Drennen
MEDIA CONTACT: Colleen O'Boyle (703) 683-5004