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NBC Nightly News

Iran's Anti-American Quds Force Already on the Ground Helping Iraqis, NBC's Engel Notes

Anti-American commandos from Iran are already helping the Iraqi military by doing the sort of logistical coordination that President Obama promised from the U.S. Army today, NBC's Richard Engel noted in a June 19 Nightly News report from Baghdad. "The image I've had in my head all day, Brian, is of this driver's ed car with two steering wheels, with one with the U.S. Army now about 300 people on one steering wheel and the Iranian Quds Force-- which is often hostile to the United States at the other wheel --  and I'm not sure that Iran and the U.S. have any intention of driving this car in the same direction," the network's chief foreign affairs correspondent told viewers at home.

That's a bit of an understatement considering the Quds Force was implicated in October 2011 in a plot to assassinate the Saudi ambassador to the United States on American soil. From reporting on CNN.com on Oct. 11, 2011:

Nets Cover ’22 Jump St’ More Than Two Times That Devoted to American Teen Abducted by Islamists

An American teenager, along with two Israeli teens, has been kidnapped in Israel. “[T]wo jihadist groups had posted claims of responsibility for kidnapping the teens,” according to The Washington Post. Israel is in an uproar as the government tries to find them.

But in America, the broadcast networks are breathlessly covering the new movie “22 Jump Street.” In fact, ABC, CBS and NBC have devoted more than 10 and a half minutes to the sophomoric slapstick movie comedy. That’s more than twice what they’ve given to the kidnapping.

MSNBC's Wolffe Contradicted by NBC As He Wrongly Claims No Al-Qaeda in Iraq Before Invasion

Appearing as a guest on Wednesday's The Last Word with Lawrence O'Donnell, MSNBC.com executive editor Richard Wolffe mocked former Vice President Dick Cheney for his recent criticism of President Obama, and inaccurately claimed that "there was no Al-Qaeda in Iraq" before Cheney "led the decision to invade Iraq."

After dismissing Cheney as being in his "last throes," Wolffe recalled: "Let's just revisit a little bit of history. Before Dick Cheney led the decision to invade Iraq, and led the disastrous occupation of Iraq, there was no Al-Qaeda in Iraq. He allowed Al-Qaeda to get a foothold in Iraq."

NBC/WSJ Poll: 54 Percent Say Obama 'Can't Lead, Get the Job Done'; 'Nightly News' Skips Damning Stat

Fifty-four percent of respondents in a brand new NBC/Wall Street Journal poll believe that President Obama "can't lead, get the job done," contrasted with 42 percent who say he can. What's more, a healthy plurality, 41 percent, also answered that "the performance of the Obama administration" has "gotten worse" in the past 12 months. Yet the NBC Nightly News ignored those stunning numbers in its June 18 broadcast. [Anchor Brian Williams additionally failed to tease the poll in his opening preview of the night's stories.]

While chief White House correspondent Chuck Todd did touch on how "57 percent disapprove of the job he's doing on foreign policy," that factoid was buried in a story centered on blaming former Vice President Dick Cheney's with stoking yet another inside-the-Beltway partisan "blame game" over Iraq. You can read the full transcript below the page break (listen to the full segment via mp3 audio here; watch video excerpt below page break):

NBC Casts Benghazi Arrest as 'Victory Lap' for Obama; It 'Opened Old Political Wounds' for Hillary

On Tuesday night, CBS and NBC  led their evening newscasts with the arrest of the supposed mastermind of the September 11, 2012 terrorist attacks on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya while ABC reported it right after two short stories on devastating tornadoes in the Midwest. 

To their credit, CBS and ABC made a serious attempt at bias-free reporting but NBC’s Nightly News fell short. On top of that, the peacock network continued their biased perspective this morning on the Today show. [See video below. MP3 audio here]

Networks Ignore Report Claiming Clintons Trying To Avoid Paying Estate Tax They Support

On Wednesday, June 17 Bloomberg reported that Bill and Hillary Clinton are taking advantage of financial planning strategies to avoid paying a hefty estate tax, even though the Clintons are prominent supports of the tax. 

Despite the report, ABC, CBS, and NBC have all ignored the story on both their morning and evening newscasts. According to Bloomberg: “The Clintons are using financial planning strategies befitting the top 1 percent of U.S. households in wealth. These moves, common among multimillionaires, will help shield some of their estate from the tax that now top out at 40 percent of assets upon death.” 

NBC’s Brian Williams Contradicts Own Reporters on Iraq, Claims U.S. ‘May Have To Work With Iran’

On Monday, June 16, NBC Nightly News anchor Brian Williams did his best to not only spin the recent surge in violence throughout Iraq as being George W. Bush’s fault but managed to completely contradict the reporting of NBC’s own journalists. 

Williams opened the broadcast by falsely declaring “As a group of heavily armed and highly motivated terrorists continues its way across Iraq, it's not yet clear if the U.S. will take any action in Iraq...The U.S. may have to work with Iran before this is all over as another Iraqi city has now fallen to this group called ISIS.” 

ABC, NBC Continue to Ignore IRS Claim That It Lost 2 Years of Lois Lerner Emails

Last Friday, the Internal Revenue Service announced that it had lost approximately two years of emails from former employee Lois Lerner. 

Despite the damning new revelations in the IRS scandal, ABC and NBC have failed to cover the story as of Monday June 16, and only CBS This Morning reported on the emails on Monday but their evening news program ignoring the IRS alongside ABC's World News with Diane Sawyer and NBC Nightly News.

Chelsea Clinton's $600,000-Per-Year Salary at NBC For a Story a Month? An Obvious Political Favor

Dylan Byers and Maggie Haberman of Politico reported Chelsea Clinton earned an annual salary of $600,000 at NBC News before switching to a month-to-month contract earlier this year.

This might not be a shocking number if the former president’s daughter was an experienced journalist with tons of charisma...and if she was churning out a pile of stories. So how many stories do you think Chelsea filed since joining NBC in November 2011?

NBC Minimizes Obama's Iraq Pullout As Contributing Factor to Islamist Advance

On Friday's NBC Nightly News, Brian Williams strongly hinted that the recent Islamist blitzkrieg in Iraq was completely former President Bush's fault: "Make no mistake: what's happening in Iraq right now is a direct outgrowth of the U.S. decision to invade the country over a decade ago." However, he glossed over the Obama administration's failure to negotiate a continued U.S. presence and pulling out all American forces in late 2011 as a factor in the crisis.

Williams repeated his point to David Gregory: "How does the President sell any action at all to the component of the American people who feel...it's not our dance...even though...we broke it?" Gregory seconded his contention: "Right, that Pottery Barn rule: you broke it; you own it; you got to somehow fix it." Later, Stephanie Gosk did reference the troop pullout, but didn't mention President Obama by name: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]

NBC Boosts Bloomberg Gun Control Group's Misleading Figure on School Shootings

Miguel Almaguer hyped on Wednesday's NBC Nightly News that "since the mass shooting in Newtown a year and a half ago, there's been at least 74 school shootings across the country – roughly one every week." However, the correspondent failed to mention that this figure came from the pro-gun control group Everytown for Gun Safety, which was founded earlier in 2014 by liberal billionaire Michael Bloomberg. [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]

On Tuesday, Kyle Becker of the Independent Journal Review spotlighted a series of Twitter posts from author and journalist Charles C. Johnson, which called out Bloomberg's organization for giving an "exaggerated impression of how many school shootings have taken place," as many they represent "all sorts" of different incidents involving guns in or near schools. Becker added:

ABC, NBC Too Busy With O.J. Simpson Police Chase Anniversary To Cover V.A. Scandal

CBS Evening News was the only Big Three evening newscast on Wednesday to report that the FBI has opened a criminal investigation into the V.A. scandal. Neither ABC's World News nor NBC Nightly News covered this latest development in the ongoing controversy. Instead, both programs devoted air time to the 20th anniversary of O.J. Simpson's slow-speed run from the police, after the murder of his wife and her friend.

Anchor Scott Pelley gave an 18-second news brief on the federal agency's new probe into the cover-up of long patient wait times at the Department of Veterans Affairs: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]

Lois Lerner Sent Confidential Taxpayer Info to FBI Right Before 2010 Midterms, Networks Ignore

On Monday, the House Oversight Committee investigating the IRS targeting scandal released new e-mails that showed Lois Lerner sent a database of tax exempt organizations to the FBI right before the 2010 midterm elections.

So what was the reaction of anchors and reporters at the Big Three (ABC, CBS, NBC ) networks to the release of federally protected confidential taxpayer information? A big fat yawn. So far no one at the Big Three evening or morning shows have reported on this most recent development in the IRS-Tea Party targeting scandal. 

‘Big Three’ Networks Ignore Latest ObamaCare Delay

On Tuesday, June 10, the Obama Administration issued a delay that will allow 18 states not to implement a portion of ObamaCare’s small business health insurance exchange until 2016.

Despite the delay, which was issued by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, all three network evening news broadcasts on ABC, CBS, and NBC ignored the story on Tuesday evening. 

NBC’s McFadden Reads Hillary Her Own Book: ‘Evidence...Why I Think You Are Actually Running For President’

Hillary Clinton sat down with NBC’s Cynthia McFadden for an interview which aired on NBC Nightly News on Tuesday, June 10 to promote her new book “Hard Choices.” While the NBC reporter brought up sensitive issues such as Benghazi, when the subject turned to Clinton’s potential presidential bid, McFadden proved to be nothing more than a Hillary sycophant. 

The first thing that aired from the interview was McFadden gushing “I know you say you haven't made up your mind, but I'm going to give you the evidence from your book why I think you actually are running for president.” [See video below.]  

UPDATE: Networks Refuse to Report Obama Role in Humanitarian Border Crisis

UPDATE: On the June 10 Evening News, CBS’s Vicente Arenas reported: “The influx of children is being blamed on poverty and drug-related violence in Central America. It’s also thought some parents wrongly believe policy changes made by President Obama prohibit young, illegal immigrants from being deported.”

Late last week, detention centers along the U.S.-Mexican border were crushed with a new surge of unaccompanied illegal immigrant children, yet two of the Big Three networks have barely touched this new headache for the Obama administration.

And not a single reporter or anchor on ABC, CBS or NBC have cited Barack Obama’s extension of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) as cause for a humanitarian crisis that has led to children as young as 9-years-old illegally crossing the border without their parents. (video after the jump)

85 Percent of Network Coverage of EPA Regulations Ignore Economic Impact

New EPA coal regulations could kill half a million jobs and cost more than $1 trillion. Rather than focusing on these enormous consequences, ABC, CBS and NBC spent 85 percent of their time ignoring the economic impact. The networks instead touted the proposals as an "ambitious” plan to combat “Earth-warming pollution.”

On June 2, the EPA unveiled regulations that require states to cut carbon emissions 30 percent by 2030. The announcement resulted in swift opposition from conservatives and coal advocates.

(video after break)

MRC's Notable Quotables: Slamming GOP for 'Swiftboating' Sgt. Bergdahl

Now online: the June 9 edition of Notable Quotables, MRC's bi-weekly compilation of the latest outrageous quotes in the liberal media. This week, left-wing journalists rally to Obama's defense on the prisoner swap, blasting Republicans for "swiftboating" Sgt. Bowe Berghdahl and claiming that the five newly-freed Taliban leaders would have a "negligible" effect on the war.

Also, NBC's Brian Williams calls Obama's foreign policy "muscular, if not militaristic," ABC is pleased Hillary Clinton has "come out swinging" against Benghazi critics, while a CNN "news" anchor thinks Michelle Obama can sign laws into effect. Highlights after the jump; the entire issue is posted online, with 22 quotes at www.MRC.org.

NBC's Williams Skips V.A. Scandal in Obama Interview; Omits Reid's Claim on Bergdahl Swap

Brian Williams glossed over the V.A. scandal during his interview of President Obama on Friday's NBC Nightly News. Williams did devote time to the ongoing controversy surrounding the release of senior Taliban leaders in exchange for Bowe Bergdahl – specifically the White House failing to inform Congress 30 days before the Islamists were let go from Guantanamo Bay, as required by federal law.

However, the anchor didn't mention that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid revealed that he was informed of the trade for Bergdahl on May 27, 2014 – a day before it actually happened. Williams also forwarded the President's own misleading claim about his grandfather's World War II service: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]

Friday Funny: NBC's Fallon Pokes Fun at Obama Dumbbell Workout

It was a tale of two slow-jam-the-news partners last night on NBC. Nightly News host Brian Williams offered some very serious reporting on the video circulating of President Obama pumping iron. On the other hand,Tonight Show host Jimmy Fallon offered a more humorous take on the video.

Williams simply couldn’t fathom the privacy breach of such a video as the president’s work out regime is now being “critiqued” by millions -- well, probably more like billions. Gasp! Jimmy Fallon, seemingly more in tune with the American public, offered the more humorous – perhaps, more truthful side to the video, “I know it’s just the president working out, but it’s weird, right?” (Video below)

NBC: Testifying on Benghazi 'The Most Important Thing' to Hillary Clinton

During a fawning segment on Thursday's NBC Today promoting Hillary Clinton's People magazine interview, co-host Savannah Guthrie parroted the former Secretary of State's spin on the 2012 terrorist attack in Libya: "On Benghazi, Clinton said the chance to testify was the most important thing to her, despite a fall and concussion that's brought some Republican hard knocks on her health." [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]

Guthrie touted Clinton's thinly-veiled attempt to question the health of Republican Congressman Paul Ryan: "Clinton told People that 2012 GOP vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan told her he had suffered three concussions, one serious." Guthrie then noted: "Team Clinton has set up a rapid response team to address criticism about Benghazi during her book tour."

Networks Blame Wildfires, Droughts on Climate Change, Despite Fact They’ve Declined

Hot-headed climate alarmists continue to make wilder and wilder claims about the effects of global warming, but they often desert the actual evidence.

On June 2, the Environmental Protection Agency unveiled a new plan to restrict carbon emissions in an attempt to combat climate change. This move came less than a month after the White House released a high-profile report fear-mongering over the impacts of climate change, including wild fires and droughts.

(video after break)

NBC Hypes 'Often-Scrutinized' Hillary's 'Uncharacteristically Revealing' Interview

Ann Curry trumpeted that Hillary Clinton supposedly gave a "uncharacteristically revealing interview" to People magazine on Wednesday's NBC Nightly News. Kelly O'Donnell filed a gushing report about how Mrs. Clinton apparently "has plenty to say," and spotlighted the former secretary of state's new book.

O'Donnell later zeroed-in on the upcoming arrival of Clinton's grandchild and asserted that this would give a "new dimension to her already well-known, often-scrutinized political identity." She also turned to a Washington Post editor, who played up that the former Democratic senator might gain a political advantage from the baby: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]

NBC Hails 'Landmark' Minimum Wage Hike in Seattle as 'Historic Victory for Workers'

In a brief on Tuesday's NBC Today, news anchor Natalie Morales portrayed a minimum wage hike in Seattle as the first step toward a nationwide increase: "Well, with talks across the country ongoing about boosting the minimum wage, workers in Seattle are soon going to be seeing a big boost....The Seattle city council passed an ordinance Monday that bumps the minimum wage up to $15 an hour. That's the highest in the nation." [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]

The headline on screen declared: "Landmark Minimum Wage Hike; Seattle's $15 an Hour Could Set New Standard." In a later news brief, Morales proclaimed the policy to be "A historic victory for workers in Seattle that could have a big impact nationwide."

Only NBC Nightly News Highlights Obama’s Failure to Notify Congress Prior to Releasing Prisoners from Gitmo

The United States negotiated the release of five Afghan prisoners at Guantanamo Bay in exchange for the Taliban freeing an American sergeant from captivity yet President Obama may have violated U.S. law by failing to notify Congress of his actions. 

Despite the potential legal problems with releasing prisoners without notifying Congress, NBC Nightly News was the only evening news program on Saturday, May 31 to mention the controversy or the GOP's criticism. [See video below.] 

New York Times Hits Brian Williams For Going Soft on Snowden

Even critic Alessandra Stanley at The New York Times criticized NBC anchor Brian Williams for his servile interview with massive-leaker Edward Snowden in Russia.

“I miss Barbara Walters already,” she wrote, as if Barbara was the epitome of hardball interviews. “Brian Williams of NBC News did a good job of letting Edward J. Snowden say what he wanted to say. Someone a little nosier would surely have pressed the exiled National Security Agency leaker on what he held back.” Such as:

Nets Eagerly Promote Hillary ‘Fighting Back’ and ‘Taking on Critics’ Over Benghazi

Hillary Clinton is managing to do what conservatives cannot: get Benghazi into the news – but only to showcase her heroic efforts to take on those awful Republicans. ABC anchor David Muir on Friday night heralded how she “is ready to fight back on Benghazi,” trumpeting how a selective release from a chapter of her upcoming book shows “she’s taking on her critics.”

Reporter Martha Raddatz touted how “she comes out swinging. Her anger aimed at congressional Republicans who she accuses of politicizing the tragedy.”

Obama Economy Contracts, But CBS Sees ‘Strong Rebound’ While ABC Frets ‘Chianti Caper’

America suffered an economic setback in the first quarter of the year as the GDP for Obama’s economy was revised downward Thursday morning to a negative one percent, yet neither ABC’s World News nor the NBC Nightly News considered it newsworthy.

Meanwhile, the CBS Evening News spun the bad news into a positive. Reporter Anthony Mason insisted “it sets the economy up for rebound this quarter and there are some encouraging signs in the numbers.”

Brian Williams to Snowden: 'Did You Vote for President Obama? Did He Disappoint You?'

During his lengthy interview with NSA leaker Edward Snowden, NBC Nightly News anchor Brian Williams found time to ask if the wanted fugitive was an Obama supporter: "Did you vote for President Obama?" After Snowden refused to answer, Williams worried: "Did he disappoint you?" [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]

Snowden replied: "...whether or not I voted for President Obama, I was inspired by him. He gave me courage, he gave me hope. I really believed that he would be a positive force for the country. And I still hope he will be." Williams added: "You, however, looked at it, you were hoping he would reverse some of the Bush policies. You were quoted as saying you were disappointed that he did not." Snowden noted: "Well, he said he would."

NBC's Williams: Shouldn't NSA Be 'On Guard for A Perversion' of Surveillance After 'Bush and Cheney'?

During a live webcast on NBCNews.com immediately following Wednesday's 10 p.m. ET airing of his interview with Edward Snowden, Nightly News anchor Brian Williams wondered why the National Security Agency was not more receptive to Snowden's claims of unconstitutional spying: "Knowing that in war powers times...the Bush administration use of war powers with Bush and Cheney, isn't the general counsel at the NSA a little bit on guard for a perversion, as Snowden put it?" [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]

That question was prompted by national security analyst Michael Leiter observing: "Imagine you're the general counsel at the National Security Agency and you get an email which says, 'Listen, I think that you're violating the law here, this is unconstitutional.' And the general counsel gets this note and he says, 'Well, gosh, the Congress has authorized this over and over, the FISA court says it's okay.'"