Our Sick Edwards-Excusing Media

You know there are some in the liberal media who have simply lost touch with reality when the headline reads “John Edwards Cheats on Wife With Cancer” and they ask with great detachment whether he’ll be able to run for office again soon. These people’s morality is so bizarre that they showed more outrage at John McCain featuring a picture of Paris Hilton in a commercial for two eye-blinks than for Edwards catting around on a dying spouse.

For months (and more hotly in the last two weeks), the National Enquirer has been trickling out the goods they collected on John Edwards having an affair and possibly a love child with campaign aide Rielle Hunter, staking out Edwards in a California hotel – and how he hid in the bathroom to avoid them.

There’s a quick campaign ad on the two parties in a nutshell. Republican George Bush took on Osama bin Laden and took out Saddam Hussein. Democrat John Edwards hides in a bathroom from the tabloids.

Throughout this time, the very same media that almost immediately spread unproven trash on John McCain’s alleged “romantic” relationship with lobbyist Vicki Iseman because the source was the allegedly professional New York Times now remained as quiet as a cabin full of Carthusian monks. Only when everyone was familiar with the story thanks to the New Media and Edwards was forced to confess did the networks break their obedient silence.

Anyone watching the TV stories found a tone of sadness, of the outraged disappointment of Edwards supporters like campaign manager David Bonior. That’s acceptable. But the story came almost entirely from within the Edwards bubble. You couldn’t find in these stories any time for Republicans, and it was rare to find anyone asking not about Edwards, but about the Democrats in general. How would this taint them?

When the question emerged briefly on television, it had a perish-the-thought tone to it. On “Sunday Today” two days after the Edwards confession, NBC anchor Lester Holt asked the apparently unthinkable: “Is Obama touched or tainted by this in any stretch of the imagination?” NBC political analyst Chuck Todd was fervent in his reply: “I don’t think he is at all, Lester. You know, if anything, sure, that they lose a good surrogate. This was a guy who was very good on the stump.”

Holt worried that the Republicans might stoop so low as to speak of Edwards: “Is there any stomach for John McCain perhaps using, taking some political advantage of this, or will he simply leave this alone as a third rail?” (Translation: we would like to make this an untouchable third rail.) Todd was emphatic once again: ” Not at all. They’re probably going to leave this alone. John McCain had to deal with a story that their campaign was very upset about, that The New York Times did. They’re not going to touch this. You know, stuff like this usually ends up getting swept under the rug pretty quickly.”

But the networks didn’t sweep this under the rug. They sat on top of the dirty rug for months while the Enquirer dug out the Edwards affair, and now that it’s out, they want it swept right back under the rug before the Democratic convention. It’s unthinkable (to them) that this should taint the Democrats in any way. Even stranger, Todd thinks that McCain being slimed by the New York Times should shame him into shutting up, when it certainly didn’t provoke any shame within Todd’s profession. They all ran that story without taking a coffee break to investigate the skimpy evidence for themselves.

This is not the network “news” approach when the scandal shoe is on the other foot. Ask yourself: what did Rev. Ted Haggard’s use of drugs and male prostitutes in Colorado have to do with the national Republican Party? Or Mark Foley’s dirty Internet messages to congressional pages? Yet every time they it’s happened to a Republican, the media worked strenuously to spread the tar and underline the damage to the GOP.

What did Larry Craig’s shoe placement in an airport bathroom in 2007 have to do with the Republican Party as a whole? The media treated that story as a much larger scoop than John Edwards cheating on the wife dying of cancer. It was a story that led the news (certainly on Chuck Todd’s NBC) for days and days. Here’s Matt Lauer on day one: “Can the right wing withstand yet another scandal involving one of its own?”

The networks repeatedly displayed the Edwards marriage as a fairy-tale story of two lawyers celebrating their anniversaries over a chocolate Frosty at Wendy’s. Now we know it was bunk. For them to act like there was nothing shameful or hypocritical to expose here is another explicit display of their Democratic favoritism.

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  • Barbara Fortin

    Obama- How can Obama, who was raised Muslam in their schools, come to our USA of one Nation under GOD’. Will he drop another 911 boom? What form will it take this time? How can we trust a man who refuses to have honor for the USA,, its anthem or to where a lapel flag? When asked if he would try to save a full term
    baby of a botched abortion, he said ‘NO!’ He has no values for our |lag, Our natlion or Life itself?

  • kent4jmj

    One argument that is floating around out there is why should we even care about this kind of behavior in a politician? The argument usually points to polls showing that it is common practice in our society and therefor it really should not be a concern in regards to how well a politician can do their job.

    On the surface this may seem like a legitimate argument but I don’t buy it. Here’s why. Marriage requires a solemn public vow to remain monogamous. If one does not believe in that then do not get married and if it was not a Church ceremony get a divorce. If one wants a relationship that allows for this behavior then at least be honest about it.
    The real issue however is that a vow was broken. One that should never have been made if there was no to intention to live by it.
    The other serious issue that arises from this kind of behavior in our politicians is that if they can not be trusted to remain faithful in their private lives how can we expect them to remain faithful to the Public Trust.

    Elected officials at the Federal level take an Oath of Office to defend and uphold the Constitution. An oath was once considered, like the marriage vow, to be one of the most serious pledges an individual could possibly make. Now why should a vow taken as a private citizen be tied or related to an Oath taken as a public servant?

    Because a public servant needs, and must, be held to a higher standard of personal integrity.

    Personal behavior directly impacts the perception of whether or not a person is trustworthy. Whether or not they have the personal integrity required to serve the best interests of those who elected them. And rightfully so. He who can be trusted in small things can be given greater trust in larger ones. Paraphrased.