I want to start with a simple statement.
President Trump’s comments on NBC and their reporting are wrong. Full Stop. I don’t care if he really meant them or if he was just ranting as usual. You don’t suggest a press member should be shut down over bad coverage. Is NBC dishonest and biased? It sure seems that way, especially after revelations of them killing the Weinstein story have emerged. That’s still no excuse.
So for once, the press and Democrats actually had a justifiable reason to really pounce.
At what point are we going to silence media critical of the President? When we cease to have a First Amendment and a democratic government. https://t.co/w0ljOUkM7u
— Adam Schiff (@RepAdamSchiff) October 11, 2017
Keep in mind, Schiff is also a huge proponent of overturning Citizen’s United. So his support of the 1st amendment seems to be limited by his politics, but I digress.
Here’s a few more to get us setup.
— Jake Tapper (@jaketapper) October 11, 2017
First Ammendment protects freedom of religion, speech, petition, assembly & press. Maybe ‘appropriate’ in authoritarian regimes, not the USA https://t.co/oSmgybzupr
— Will Ripley (@willripleyCNN) October 11, 2017
NBC themselves got in on the act as well, writing an article denouncing Trump via “1st Amendment advocates. In the past, NBC has also attacked Trump for blocking people on twitter and for his NFL comments, again citing the 1st amendment as their basis.
What’s wrong with any of these takes? Absolutely nothing.
So what’s the problem? The fact that they are giant freaking hypocrites.
In the past month, Donald Trump has signed a series of executive orders which end cost subsidies to insurers and rescinds the DACA program, both originally put in place by President Obama.
What do these things have in common? The original orders by President Obama were both completely unconstitutional. DACA was under challenge and was fighting against the precedent of DAPA, which had already been found illegal. He overstepped his bounds, attempting to unilaterally change immigration laws, something that is the purview of Congress. The cost sharing subsidies to insurers at question were never appropriated via legislation, making it illegal for the executive to spend money Congress has not approved.
The media, if they are consistent, should be cheering these moves as wins toward upholding the constitution. I mean, they love the constitution right? 1st Amendment!!! and all that.
Are they? Of course not.
These examples all have to do with the illegal insurance subsidies being ended, but I think most of us can recall the reactions to DACA as well.
Important: if Trump stops paying insurers, rates for EVERYBODY go up – not just for people on ACA exchange plans. Get ready, America!!
— Chris Murphy (@ChrisMurphyCT) October 13, 2017
Trump now very clear he's holding hostages – CSRs and DACA kids – and wants Democrats to negotiate for them.
— Steven Dennis (@StevenTDennis) October 13, 2017
Steven Dennis is supposedly an unbiased “reporter” for Bloomberg.
By abandoning his responsibility to fund ACA subsidies, Trump is putting health care *and* jobs on the chopping block for rural Americans. pic.twitter.com/W92Qu3aNC7
— The Democrats (@TheDemocrats) October 13, 2017
Make no mistake about it, @POTUS will try to blame the Affordable Care Act, but this will fall on his back and he will pay the price for it.
— Chuck Schumer (@SenSchumer) October 13, 2017
Then there’s the denunciations at the major networks (via Newsbusters.)
“President Trump’s health care bombshell. The White House immediately ends insurance subsidies for poor Americans, the biggest move to undermine ObamaCare yet,” co-host George Stephanopoulos hysterically warned about another presidential order revoking government subsidies to the health care industry at the top of ABC’s Good Morning America. “Democrats call it sabotage, saying it will hurt millions of working and middle class families,” the former Democratic political operative added…
…Leading off CBS This Morning, co-host Charlie Rose decried: “Overnight, the Trump administration ends $7 billion in ObamaCare subsidies for millions of low income Americans….Democrats call the move pointless sabotage.”
Introducing a report on the topic minutes later, Rose fretted that “President Trump is trying to undermine ObamaCare on two fronts” with the dual executive orders. Like Karl on ABC, fill-in co-host Bianna Golodryga announced: “Democratic leaders Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi responded in a statement saying, quote, ‘Millions of hard-working American families will suffer just because President Trump wants them to.’”
…President Trump taking a double barrel approach to unraveling ObamaCare. Overnight announcing he will scrap critical subsidies to health insurance companies. Subsidies that are used to help pay the out-of-pocket costs for low income people. Democratic leaders Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer blasting the move as a “spiteful act of vast, pointless sabotage.”…
Notice what you don’t see in any of these reports or characterizations, which are really just shameless repeating of Democratic talking points. You see nothing about Trump returning constitutionally delegated power to Congress. You see no praise for upholding the constitution in the face of clearly illegal orders under Obama. You actually see no mention of the constitution at all.
Instead you see veiled criticisms and attacks couched in “Democrats say” modifiers. Suddenly, the media and Democrats don’t care about the constitution anymore, nor do they even give it a passing thought.
In fact, every single report I can find describes Trump as attacking, sabotaging, dismantling, undermining, or killing Obamacare. Not once have I found a report that brings up the constitutional aspects at play or even asks the question of whether Trump is respecting his oath by ending DACA and these insurance subsidies.
Let this be a marker. The next time you see a media member or Democrat politician clutch the constitution close because Trump made some stupid tweets (the fact that they are damaging and irresponsible does not make tweeting things unconstitutional), they should be denounced as the hypocrites they are. These people have no credibility on this issue. Our founding document is nothing more than a political tool that can be ignored or lauded depending on how it benefits their narrative.
If you haven’t been consistent in defending the constitution in all cases, then stop talking. If you didn’t decry Obama’s usurpations but now criticize the current President for undoing them, then stop talking. If you only cite the constitution when it’s convenient for your political attacks, then stop talking. That goes for the other side as well. If you criticized Obama but now want to rationalize taking NBC’s “license” (which doesn’t actually exist) because Trump said it, then stop talking.
People like Chris Cuomo, George Stephanapolous, and Nancy Pelosi are in no place to lecture this country on constitutional freedoms. Our media and the Democratic Party have chosen political expediency over consistency on constitutional matters time and time again. They do not deserve to be heard now.