Earlier this morning, I was on the McCain-Palin morning press call. Frankly it was the best of the campaign so far. Campaign Manager Rick Davis and Senior Adviser Steve Schmidt launched a full frontal assault on the New York Times as a wholly partisan operation advocating expressly for the election of Obama, and the defeat of John McCain. Frankly, I agree in spirit – though I don’t no if in some legalistic way that could be proven.
The outright falsehoods, and the “narrative” that seems to be agreed upon by many in the main stream press is the result of personal bias, laziness, and a ‘it’s the Dems turn’ philosophy that seems to trump one fact: it is not the media’s decision to make. It is the American people who will vote in November. And it may surprise the press to know this: many of them have telephones, email, cell phones, and internet access. They even volunteer for campaigns – and are likely to have more than the biased information at their fingertips.
Their narrative feeds Obama’s malignant narcissicm. Here are Schmidt’s comments from the call this morning, in response to a question by CNN’s Dana Bash:
“Let me first say: We are First Amendment absolutists on this campaign,” he began. “The press, and anybody who wishes to cover this race from the blogosphere perspective or from a media perspective, … of course is constitutionally protected with regard to writing … whatever they want to write. But let’s be clear and be honest with each other about something fundamental to this race.”
He went on to say:
“But let’s be clear and be honest with each other about something fundamental to this race, which is this: whatever the New York Times once was, it is today not by any standard a journalistic organization. It is pro-Obama advocacy organization that every day attacks the McCain campaign, attacks Senator McCain, attacks Governor Palin, and excuses Senator Obama.
“There’s no level of public vetting with regard to Senator Obama’s record, his background, his past statements. There’s no level of outrage directed at his deceitful ads. This is an organization that is completely, totally, 150% in the tank for the Democratic candidate, which is their prerogative to be. But let’s not be dishonest and call it something other than what it is.
“Everything that is read in the New York Times that attacks this campaign should be evaluated by the American people from that perspective: that it is an organization that has made a decision to cast aside its journalistic integrity and tradition to advocate for the defeat of one candidate – in this case John McCain – and to advocate for the election of the other candidate, Barack Obama.”
Schmidt was absolutely spot on. First Amendment Absolutists? Amen, Steve. Amen.