Why Is George Consulting To Obama *AND* Working For ABC?!?
John A. Quayle
blueoval57 at VERIZON.NET
Thu Feb 5 10:32:00 MST 2009
New Day, New Pro-Obama Spin from Stephanopoulos:
'He Can Move On'
Appearing on Wednesday's Good Morning America, former top Democratic
aide-turned journalist George Stephanopoulos assured viewers that Barack
Obama can now move on from his multiple failed cabinet officials. Referring
to individuals such the (now) former Health and Human Services nominee Tom
Daschle, who resigned on Tuesday due to tax problems, Stephanopoulos
asserted that "the good news is, even though the President was forced to
apologize so many times yesterday, is that these nominees now are gone.
They've chosen to withdraw. So, the President can move on."
He added: "This was running the possibility of really hurting his
reformist image. He can move on from that." Of course, just three days ago,
on Sunday's GMA, Stephanopoulos touted a different message. He allowed that
Daschle's nomination might be slowed down, but also predicted, "I don't
think it's going to imperil it, though." He also forecast: "The key is
going to be those Republicans and, of course, is this the last of the bad
news for Senator Daschle? If he gets some Republican support, this is the
last of the bad news, I believe he will be confirmed."
Back on November 24, Stephanopoulos enthused over the greatness of
Obama's unfolding cabinet. Talking to GMA co-host Robin Roberts, he raved:
"We have not seen this kind of combination of star power and brain power
and political muscle this early in a cabinet in our lifetimes." See a
November 25 CyberAlert posting for more:
In fairness to ABC, Wednesday's Good Morning America did portray the
resignation of Daschle and Nancy Killefer, who had been nominated to the
new Chief Performance Officer position and also had tax problems, as a
"real stumble," according to co-host Roberts. The show also featured clips
of everyday Americans complaining about the tax problems of Obama nominees.
"So, we wanted to let you sound off on paying taxes, playing fair and
the Obama nominees who did not," Roberts explained. In a previous segment,
reporter Jake Tapper lectured the President, "Lesson one, just because
you're cool with the cabinet nominee's problems does not mean the American
people will be."
[This item, by the MRC's Scott Whitlock, was posted Wednesday
afternoon on the MRC's blog, NewsBusters.org:
(Thanks to MRC intern Mike Sargent for transcribing the Sunday George
A transcript of the February 4 segment, which aired at 7:03am, follows:
ROBIN ROBERTS: And as you just saw in Jake's piece, people, of
course, critical of politicians who do not pay taxes, especially as tens of
millions of Americans prepare to write a check to the IRS in the next few
months. So, we wanted to let you sound off on paying taxes, playing fair
and the Obama nominees who did not.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I want to see everybody held to the same
standards that my family is held to. As a citizen of the United States,
we're forced to pay our taxes on time. We file our income tax- our
paperwork. We have to send our check in or they come and knock on our door.
SECOND UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I feel that if the average person who
goes to work has to pay taxes, and I know how much I pay, I feel that
politicians should have to pay their fair share, too.
JON STEWART: Now, Geithner is the only one who has been approved.
Daschle and Killefer have withdrawn their nominations. So, let that be a
lesson to the kids out there. Pay your taxes, or you'll never rise any
higher than treasury secretary.
ROBERTS: And now, for the bottom line, we turn to chief Washington
correspondent, and host of "This Week," George Stephanopoulos. And, George,
a few chuckles here in the studio, because everyone from Jon Stewart to
folks on the street, as you just heard, outraged about what they're seeing
with these nominees. The first real stumble for this administration.
GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS: That's right. And that's why the good news is,
even though the President was forced to apologize so many times yesterday,
is that these nominees now are gone. They've chosen to withdraw. So, the
President can move on. This was running the possibility of really hurting
his reformist image. He can move on from that. But there were two other
questions raised by these withdrawals, especially the withdrawal of Senator
Daschle yesterday. What will it do to the overall effort to reform health
care this year? In many ways Senator Daschle was uniquely positioned and a
uniquely powerful advocate for that cause. And number two, will these
stumbles embolden the President's opponents on this economic rescue plan,
the stimulus package?
ROBERTS: Well, let's talk about that. Because, this does come on the
heels of him going to Capitol Hill, and trying to push tough his stimulus
package. Does this bolster the Republican opposition?
STEPHANOPOULOS: It has. And the President is going to have to agree
to some changes right now. There is a bipartisan group working, now on
changes that would bring down the overall level of this bill. It's led by
three people, really. Senator Susan Collins of Maine. Senator Olympia Snowe
of Maine. Those are moderate Republicans. And Senator Ben Nelson of
Nebraska. White House and Senate sources tell me that the President is
going to be meeting individually with each one of these senators today, to
see if they can work towards some kind of agreement to take out some of the
spending programs in this package, which aren't considered to give you the
biggest job bang for the buck. The biggest job bang for the buck. There
will still be some differences with this group. The President doesn't want
to bring the package down as far as some of the senators want to go. But
they're be working intensively on a compromise today.
ROBERTS: As we heard at the end of Jake Tapper's piece, the President
taking on another hot-button issue, executive pay, for these- some of the
bank executives. A salary cap, if you will.
STEPHANOPOULOS: Absolutely essential for the President to have any
hope of getting support for his announcement, likely to come next week, of
new rescue plans for some of these troubled banks. There's so much anger
out there about executive pay, about the fact that a lot of the banks and
insurance companies are still taking junkets, even though they're getting
government money. This was an absolute precondition to getting public
support for this broader rescue package, which is likely to come next week.
ROBERTS: As always, George, appreciate the bottom line. Thanks so
much. Have a good day.
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