By: Cliff Kincaid
Accuracy in Media
Longtime Democratic political operative and pollster Pat Caddell told the AIM “ObamaNation: A Day of Truth” conference on September 21 that Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney should run against the press as well as Barack Obama. Romney should be strongly “pushing back” against the media bias, he said.
Caddell, who has become critical of the liberal direction of the Democratic Party, has recently declared that Romney is running an incompetent campaign. He said about Romney’s strategists, “They are incompetent, they believe that you can sit and an election will automatically come to you.”
At the AIM conference, he mentioned that criticism in the context of urging the Romney campaign to launch a vigorous attack on the major media. He said major news organizations are serving “as off-shoots of the White House press office,” and will destroy America unless their power is monitored, exposed, and checked.
He added, “Why isn’t Romney himself getting up and saying, ‘I’m running against two organizations—I’m running against the Democrats and the President, and I’m running against the mainstream media, which will not tell you the truth.’”
Caddell said Romney won’t do this because he is running a “cautious” campaign. He explained, “…they don’t do it because this man dares to be cautious. He’s going to dare-to-be-cautious himself right out of a race that was his to lose, and he’s losing it…”
As if to prove this point, Mitt Romney has now told Jan Crawford of CBS News that the major media are not in the tank for Obama and that he has no plans to challenge liberal media bias.
“I think we have a system of free press, people are able to provide their own perspectives, based upon their own beliefs,” he said. “I think there’s some people who are more in my camp, there are a lot of people that are more in his camp. I don’t worry about that.”
In fact, as Caddell and other speakers at the AIM conference noted, the media bias is overwhelming. A recent example, which illustrates the general pro-Democratic Party bias, was the complicity by the media in rehabilitating the disgraced and impeached former president, Bill Clinton.
On page 2 of Time magazine’s October 1st issue, featuring Bill Clinton on the cover as a global problem solver, managing editor Richard Stengel acknowledged that Time was a “media partner” behind the Clinton Global Initiative’s 2012 annual meeting.
Time reports that Stengel moderated a panel on “Creating Value for Business and Society,” in which the magazine says that he “made plain the core challenge: That the profit motive is sometimes at odds with the broader interests of society at large.”
What about involvement with the former Democratic president being at odds with the need for objective news reporting about Clinton, whose wife is Obama’s Secretary of State? Also, Obama White House press secretary Jay Carney served as Washington Bureau Chief for Time magazine.
Some of those listed as speaking at this year’s Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) were, in addition to Stengel:
- Nicholas D. Kristof, Columnist, The New York Times
- Piers Morgan, Host, CNN’s Piers Morgan Tonight
- Charlie Rose, Executive Editor and Anchor, “Charlie Rose”
- Fareed Zakaria, Host, CNN-GPS
Investigative journalist Marinka Peschmann tells AIM that the media relationship with the CGI is another example of the “unholy alliance” that existed during the Clinton Administration.
“This is nothing new,” she told AIM. “The media have been sacrificing the truth for access to the Clintons and other power-players for a long time now.”
This year, Mitt Romney spoke to the group, endorsing foreign aid and free trade and praising Clinton for helping “the downtrodden around the world.”
“Once again President Bill Clinton is playing politics masterfully by having President Obama and Romney speak at the CGI,” she said. “Now they both owe him, instead of just Obama for his keynote speech at the DNC. Bill Clinton did the same thing during the 2008 Presidential contest with Senator John McCain and then Senator Obama attending. It was a smart move on his part.”
In the CBS News interview, Crawford pressed Romney about the media, asking him, “So you think you’re getting a fair shake?”
Romney replied, “I don’t think anybody in my business thinks they wouldn’t like to re-write the stories, and write the media accounts in a way that’s more favorable to them, but I don’t worry about that. I take my message out. I know I’ll have a chance through ads, through the debates, to get my message home to the American people.”
Caddell suggested that one of Romney’s advisers, Ed Gillespie, is unconcerned about the media bias problem and winning the race because he has been a partner in a lobbying firm with former Clinton White House counsel Jack Quinn and will make money no matter what happens on Election Day.
He said, “The corruption in this town is so great. Everybody in Washington seems to almost be on the take…when you have firms that have Ed Gillespie in business with Jack Quinn, who was the counsel for Bill Clinton, and responsible for the pardon of Marc Rich, among other things, is because everybody in this—those people on K Street, in both parties, are about arrangements and money.”
Cliff Kincaid is the Director of the AIM Center for Investigative Journalism and can be contacted at email@example.com.