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Longing For President Obama


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The cause that for two years now has been closest to the liberal heart – the election and glorification of Barack Obama – has, of course, benefited immeasurably from the virtually uncritical coverage accorded it by the mainstream media. The weeks since Obama’s election have been a period of celebration and self-satisfaction for liberal journalists who barely even attempt to conceal their bias anymore.

So giddy are our mainstream media stars over Obama’s victory, they literally can’t wait for the Illinois senator to move into 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. Not a few of them are actually upset that the Constitution precludes such a scenario – a sentiment that not one of them expressed in the wake of previous presidential elections. (As usual, the Monitor thanks the invaluable Media Research Center for pulling the following quotes together.)

Here, for example, is former CBS Evening News anchor Dan Rather, who proves once again that old age and professional disgrace do not necessarily make one wiser or more circumspect:

“We can’t afford to waste an hour, much less a day or a week or a month [to install Obama as president],” Rather hyperventilated on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” program. “And this business of being a lame duck president and saying, you know, ‘Adios. I’m going to the ranch. I’m just not going to do very much during this period.’ We can’t afford it…. We’re in possibly, possibly the biggest crisis we’ve been in since December 7, 1941, and maybe since the time of the Civil War. So, we can’t afford to have this interregnum.”

New York Times foreign-affairs columnist and resident bloated ego Thomas Friedman is equally impatient:

“If I had my druthers right now,” Friedman wrote last month, “we would convene a special session of Congress, amend the Constitution and move up the inauguration from Jan. 20 to Thanksgiving Day…. Just get me a Supreme Court justice and a Bible, and let’s swear in Barack Obama right now.”

Meanwhile Friedman’s Times colleague Gail Collins was seeing visions of political sugar plums weeks before Christmas – actually, it wasn’t even Thanksgiving yet, making it impossible, if one were so inclined, to be polite and attempt to excuse her delirium on an overindulgence of candied yams and sweet potato pie:

“Thanksgiving is next week,” she wrote, “and President Bush could make it a really special holiday by resigning. Seriously…. Just to be on the safe side, the vice president ought to turn in his resignation first. (We’re desperate, but not crazy.) Then House Speaker Nancy Pelosi would become president until Jan. 20. Obviously, she’d defer to her party’s incoming chief executive, and Barack Obama could begin governing.”

And then there was USA Today founder and editorial-page nuisance Al Neuharth, who suddenly saw good reason for a new president to be rushed into office:

“No lame-duck president can do anything meaningful after the successor is elected,” complained Neuharth. “The time is spent figuring out things like how many presidential pardons to issue, many to convicted political pals…. We should move the president’s inauguration up to the first Tuesday in December, one month after the election…. People who elect a new president are eager for the change to take place. The sooner the better.”

Over on PBS’s “Washington Week,” host Gwen Ifill plaintively asked New York Times reporter Peter Baker, “Maybe what people are beginning to say is that this president-elect should be president now?.…”

To which Baker waxed enthusiastic: “That’s right, exactly. People voted for change and [there’s] this strange, odd 77-day waiting period that we impose, in effect, between our election and our inauguration.”

But perhaps the most pathetic display of media bias (with not a little naïveté thrown in for good measure) came from MSNBC daytime anchor Alex Witt, who in discussing the terrorist attacks in Mumbai exposed herself as a nitwit extraordinaire:

“There are many who had such an optimistic and hopeful opinion of things,” she reflected, “and you certainly can’t expect things to change on a dime overnight, but there are many who suggested that with the outgoing Bush administration and the incoming Obama administration there would be something of a lull in terrorism attacks. There had been such a global outpouring of affection, respect, hope, with the new administration coming in, that precisely these kinds of attacks, it was thought – at least hoped – would be dampered down. But in this case it looks like Barack Obama is getting a preview of things to come.”

Jason Maoz can be reached at jmaoz@jewishpress.com

About the Author: Jason Maoz is the Senior Editor of The Jewish Press.


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