Notable Quotables - 02/16/2004
McAuliffe's Media Mouthpieces
Terry Moran: "The President claims he served."
George W. Bush: "I got an honorable discharge, and I did show up in Alabama."
Moran: "But the records released today do not prove that, and no witnesses have ever come forward to say they saw Mr. Bush performing military service in Alabama....There are plenty of Democrats who are only too happy to stoke this. The issue is not going to go away."
-ABC's World News Tonight, Feb. 10, after the White House released records debunking DNC chief Terry McAuliffe's charge Bush was AWOL from the National Guard.
Welcoming "Hardball" Hypocrisy
Mark Strassmann: "Democrats want to exploit a contrast with Lieutenant George Bush. They charge the future Commander-in-Chief was AWOL. Call it a clear warning shot on the debate to come about national security.... Bush's service record cuts deep for this group: veterans campaigning for John Kerry, state by state."
-David Mitchell, identified as a "Republican" veteran: "He wasn't there when we needed him."
CBS Evening News, February 4.
"Now that Senator John Kerry is the frontrunner among Democrats, the Democrats are anxious to show they will play hardball when it comes to patriotism and national security."
-Tom Brokaw on the NBC Nightly News, February 4.
"Mr. Kerry's campaign advisers say the dispute, and the intense Republican response, keeps Mr. Kerry's military record as a central focus of the campaign and allows him to show he can engage in the same kind of brutal political warfare as the Bush White House."
-From a February 4 New York Times story by Elisabeth Bumiller and David Halbfinger, "Military Service Becomes Issue in Bush-Kerry Race."
"Senator John Kerry...once assailed critics of President Clinton's lack of military service, saying, 'We do not need to divide America over who served and how.'...Kerry compared Clinton's critics to 'latter-day Spiro Agnews' by playing 'to the worst instincts of divisiveness and reaction that still haunt America.' Are we now going to create a new scarlet letter in the context of Vietnam?"
-Reporter Jack Torry in a February 4 Columbus Dispatch story about Kerry's 1992 defense of the Democratic frontrunner during Clinton's draft-dodging controversy.
Pleading for End to Tax Cuts
"How, why, as a fiscal conservative as you like to call yourself, would you allow a $500 billion deficit and this kind of deficit disaster?"
"Every President since the Civil War who has gone to war has raised taxes, not cut them....Why not say, I will not cut taxes any more until we have balanced the budget? If our situation is so precious and delicate because of the war, why do you keep cutting taxes and draining money from the Treasury?"
"How about no more tax cuts until the budget is balanced?"
-NBC's Tim Russert to President Bush on Meet the Press, February 8.
Bob Schieffer: "In many ways, President Bush has kind of a populist message because when he puts in those tax cuts he's saying to people, 'Look, we're just giving your money back to you.' I want to ask you, if you should become President, do you think it is possible to bring this deficit back into line? Do you think that is important? And if you are going to do that, aren't you going to at least have to stop some of these tax cuts or, in effect, raise taxes?"
Senator John Edwards:" The answer is yes...."
Schieffer: "Oh, Senator, let me, we just have about 30 seconds. I want to make sure were clear on one thing. I asked you, 'Do you think we're going to have to raise taxes?' And you said, 'Yes.' Is that what you meant to say?"
-CBS's Face the Nation, February 1.
Get Rich Quick, Vote for Kerry
"Kerry Presidency Seen a Boon for U.S. Markets."
"If John Kerry wins the Democratic nomination and goes on to be the next U.S. President, experts say it would be good for Wall Street, which likes the way he talks up balancing the budget."
-Headline and first paragraph of Reuters reporter Chris Sanders' February 6 article, which was touted as "Recommended Reading" on the British news agencys Web site.
Hopes Vets Hide Kerry's Liberalism
"Veterans haven't been a big force in past campaigns... but the Vietnam vets may feel bound together more strongly....It may be too early to know how influential they'll be in Kerry's campaign, but they've already done one thing: If the Republicans had any hope of casting Kerry as some Michael Dukakis-style effete Eastern liberal, that's over. The band of brothers stands in his way."
-CNN's Bruce Morton on Inside Politics, January 30.
Time to Pay for CBS's Advocacy
"The red ink keeps rising. The Medicare overhaul and prescription drug benefit haven't taken effect yet and President Bush is already upping the ten-year price tag. First pegged at $400 billion, the Associated Press says the new estimate is $540 billion."
-Dan Rather on the January 29 CBS Evening News.
"In Washington today, for the umpteenth time, there's talk of a possible compromise deal to provide at least some prescription drug coverage for people on Medicare. CBS's Joie Chen reports what's different this time as millions of older Americans wait for action."
-Rather on the June 10, 2003 CBS Evening News.
"Millions of seniors are now expecting President Bush and Congress to deliver on promises of some prescription drug coverage under Medicare....As CBS's Joie Chen reports, the plan may wind up falling far short of what Medicare recipients were hoping for."
-Rather on the June 24, 2003 CBS Evening News.
She's Wowed by Class Warfare
Katie Couric: "He [Edwards] gave quite a moving speech last night. Let's take a look and then we'll talk about it."
Senator John Edwards: "We do still live in two different Americas: Two different health care systems, two different public school systems, two tax systems, two governments, two economies. It doesn't have to be that way. You and I together, we're going to build one America that works for everybody. That's what were going to do!"
-Couric to former Clinton White House press secretary Dee Dee Myers on NBC's Today February 4, the morning after Edwards won the South Carolina primary.
ABC's Tribute to the Hard Left
"Members of Moveon.org usually meet in cyberspace, but on this rare occasion, they met in a real space: New York's Hammerstein Ballroom....Nearly two million Americans are members of this burgeoning Internet group. Only a relative handful were present this night, but they were all invested in the outcome: the recognition of the winner of the Bush in 30 Seconds contest for a political ad produced by a MoveOn member. About 1,500 people submitted entries, from the hard-hitting...to the humorous....That ordinary citizens could create such sophisticated ads may seem surprising, but this group is full of surprises."
-Judy Muller's profile of the far-left partisan group MoveOn.org on ABC's Nightline, January 27.
U.S. Soldiers Died for Nothing
"Good evening. Iraq had no weapons of mass destruction. Nothing newer than 1991 at worst. But no WMD does not mean no destruction. Ask the 500 American service personnel dead in Iraq, or the wife of former Ambassador Joseph Wilson."
-MSNBC's Keith Olbermann at the start of his Countdown program, January 28.
BBC Blunders: Blame Bush & Blair
"I find it a little odd that it appears that the BBC reporter, [Andrew] Gilligan, got something wrong, and the head of the BBC has to resign as a consequence. But, at the same time, we know, or we appear to know based on what David Kay has found, based on what all the other pundits have come in, that Tony Blair and George Bush were wrong, you know, with some bigger stakes. They were the ones who were taking the world to war."
-Newsweek's Michael Isikoff on CNBC's new Dennis Miller program on February 2, commenting on a British commission's repudiation of a May 2003 BBC report which alleged Blair aides had "sexed up" a dossier on the threat posed by Iraq's weapons of mass destruction.
"The developments we've seen at the BBC in the last week should just bring a chill to the heart of every journalist on the planet. Because while you can certainly take issue with some of the techniques, some of the carelessness along the way, the fact is that the general thrust of what they were reporting is now looking like it was true."
-Time's Karen Tumulty on CNN's Reliable Sources, Feb. 1.
Bush Displaying "Dementia"
"What happens when you go in the Oval Office is you start living in a bubble, you know....David Kay, for instance, comes out with a report and says Iraq never had weapons of mass destruction. What does George W. Bush say? 'Well, I still think they had them.' That's not just spin. That's dementia."
-MSNBC contributor Ron Reagan, Jr., who boasted of voting for the ultra-left Green candidate Ralph Nader in the 2000 election, during live coverage of the January 27 New Hampshire primary results.
Dan Pops His Clutch
"Not a va-room, but a putt, putt, putt. Tonight, America's economic engine creates some new jobs, but not nearly enough to replace the thousands lost."
-Dan Rather at the top of the February 6 CBS Evening News, teasing a story on 112,000 new private-sector jobs created in January, the most in more than three years.