Bridgegate vs IRS/Benghazi Scandal Redux

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Bridgegate vs IRS/Benghazi Scandal Redux

REMINDER: In 2009, Barack Obama “Joked” About Hav­ing The IRS Audit His Enemies.

Glenn Reynolds

Media-Scales-590-LIBack in Jan­u­ary the Bridge­gate™ scan­dal broke and the media devoted hours and hours to the cov­er­age to the exclu­sion of all else. The cov­er­age was so exces­sive that Vladimir Putin could have taken Crimea, Ukraine and the Baltic states and it might have rated a line at the bot­tom of page A-​16 or 30 sec­onds at the bot­tom of a newscast.

So yes­ter­day when Randy Mastro’s press con­fer­ence began to announce the result of his inves­ti­ga­tion every news net­work turned to it cut­ting away from the Pres­i­dent in Europe

In con­nec­tion with alle­ga­tions related to the George Wash­ing­ton bridge realign­ment we found that Gov­er­nor Christie had no knowl­edge afore­hand of this George Wash­ing­ton bridge realign­ment idea and he played no role what­so­ever in that deci­sion or the imple­men­ta­tion of it. We fur­ther found no evi­dence that any­one in the governor’s office asides Brid­get Kelly knew of this idea in advance or played any role in the deci­sion or the imple­men­ta­tion of it.

It wasn’t long after the words came out of his mouth that MSNBC cut away and had a com­men­ta­tor dis­miss­ing these results and dis­missed Randy Mas­tro as a hired gun for Gov Christie and not inde­pen­dent. As I noted at the time:

CNN car­ried the press con­fer­ence a lit­tle longer but then con­tin­ued along those same lines. This was a legal team hired by Christie and should be taken with a grain of salt.

The next day Morn­ing Joe spent prac­ti­cally the entire show dis­miss­ing the find­ings of but sug­gest­ing Christie would have been bet­ter off not hav­ing the press conference.

This has become the MSM media meme:

CBS Head­line: Christie-​Appointed Lawyer: Gov­er­nor Not Involved In George Wash­ing­ton Bridge Plot

Yahoo News: Christie cleared in his own probe, but oth­ers loom

Huff­in­g­ton Post: Chris Christie’s Lawyer To Issue Traf­fic Scan­dal Report

UPDATE: The New York Times:

A White­wash for Gov. Christie
The best exam­ple? TPM’s head­line which calls this “Christie’s Self Exon­er­a­tion Panel”.

Iron­i­cally at TPM you can find another head­line that is get­ting a lot less press: Over­sight Dems To Issa: Drop The Cha­rade And Let’s Do Some Real Work.

Because we all know the inter­nal inves­ti­ga­tion of Beng­hazi was beyond reproach.

It’s seems strange to me that TPM and the rest of the media seem to have vari­able stan­dards when it comes to inter­nal inves­ti­ga­tions. Let’s take the IRS

The head of the Inter­nal Rev­enue Ser­vice told House Repub­li­cans on Wednes­day that it would take years to pro­vide all the doc­u­ments they have sub­poe­naed in their probe of how the agency han­dled tea party groups’ appli­ca­tions for tax-​exempt status.

The com­ments by IRS chief John Kosk­i­nen drew a frosty response from Repub­li­cans who run the House Gov­ern­ment Over­sight and Reform Com­mit­tee, one of sev­eral con­gres­sional pan­els inves­ti­gat­ing the con­tro­versy. The panel’s chair­man, Rep. Dar­rell Issa, R-​Calif., warned him he should com­ply with the request “or poten­tially be held in con­tempt” of Con­gress, a some­times threat­ened but seldom-​used authority.

…they didn’t find this story par­tic­u­larly news­wor­thy. It didn’t gen­er­ate a whole lot of talk on Morn­ing Joe either, in fact I don’t recall any, but why would it? After all the inter­nal inves­ti­ga­tion headed by an Obama donor leaked it was unlikely there would be any crim­i­nal charges filed and the pres­i­dent him­self said there was no cor­rup­tion involved. Where’s the story there?

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: This is a gift to the GOP.

If I was a mem­ber of the GOP I would go on every morn­ing & after­noon show that I’m invited and when ques­tioned about this report and inves­ti­ga­tion say some­thing like:

Well I think it’s very fair to ques­tion the cred­i­bil­ity of an inves­ti­ga­tion com­mis­sioned by those who are being inves­ti­gated like the IRS scan­dal for exam­ple when a polit­i­cal donor to the pres­i­dent leaked that there was unlikely to bring crim­i­nal charges even though we have peo­ple repeat­edly tak­ing the fifth in that inves­ti­ga­tion, or in the Beng­hazi inves­ti­ga­tion where the polit­i­cal allies of the White House are insist­ing con­gres­sional inves­ti­ga­tions be dropped

When they bring up Christie inter­view with Dianne Sawyer they should com­pare it to the President’s state­ment to Bill O’Reilly that there was “not even a SMIDGEN of cor­rup­tion.” No mat­ter what direc­tion the ques­tion comes, some vari­a­tion of these answer should be the response.

This is a gift to the GOP if they are smart enough to use it.

Clos­ing Thought: What would the reac­tion of the MSM be if Chris Christie had “joked” about using lane clo­sures to pun­ish may­ors who didn’t sup­port him in 2010?

Update 2: Via Glenn, Howie Carr reminds us we don’t have to go to the Obama Admin­is­tra­tion to find Democ­rats pre­sumed innocent

Oddly, how­ever, the hacks rounded up over the last few days, well, let’s put it this way. They voted for Obama 100 per­cent. They think Obamacare’s great. How could they pos­si­bly be guilty as charged?

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REMINDER: In 2009, Barack Obama “Joked” About Having The IRS Audit His Enemies.

Glenn Reynolds

Media-Scales-590-LIBack in January the Bridgegate™ scandal broke and the media devoted hours and hours to the coverage to the exclusion of all else.  The coverage was so excessive  that Vladimir Putin could have taken Crimea, Ukraine and the Baltic states and it might have rated a line at the bottom of page A-16 or 30 seconds at the bottom of a newscast.

So yesterday when Randy Mastro’s press conference began to announce the result of his investigation every news network turned to it cutting away from the President in Europe

In connection with allegations related to the George Washington bridge realignment we found that Governor Christie had no knowledge aforehand of this George Washington bridge realignment idea and he played no role whatsoever in that decision or the implementation of it. We further found no evidence that anyone in the governor’s office asides Bridget Kelly knew of this idea in advance or played any role in the decision or the implementation of it.

It wasn’t long after the words came out of his mouth that MSNBC cut away and had a commentator dismissing these results and dismissed Randy Mastro as a hired gun for Gov Christie and not independent. As I noted at the time:

 

CNN carried the press conference a little longer but then continued along those same lines. This was a legal team hired by Christie and should be taken with a grain of salt.

The next day Morning Joe spent practically the entire show dismissing the findings of but suggesting Christie would have been better off not having the press conference.

This has become the MSM media meme:

CBS Headline: Christie-Appointed Lawyer: Governor Not Involved In George Washington Bridge Plot

Yahoo News: Christie cleared in his own probe, but others loom

Huffington Post: Chris Christie’s Lawyer To Issue Traffic Scandal Report

UPDATE:  The New York Times:

A Whitewash for Gov. Christie
The best example?   TPM’s headline which calls this “Christie’s Self Exoneration Panel“.

Ironically at TPM you can find another headline that is getting a lot less press: Oversight Dems To Issa: Drop The Charade And Let’s Do Some Real Work.

Because we all know the internal investigation of Benghazi was beyond reproach.

It’s seems strange to me that TPM and the rest of the media seem to have variable standards when it comes to internal investigations.  Let’s take the IRS…

The head of the Internal Revenue Service told House Republicans on Wednesday that it would take years to provide all the documents they have subpoenaed in their probe of how the agency handled tea party groups’ applications for tax-exempt status.

The comments by IRS chief John Koskinen drew a frosty response from Republicans who run the House Government Oversight and Reform Committee, one of several congressional panels investigating the controversy. The panel’s chairman, Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., warned him he should comply with the request “or potentially be held in contempt” of Congress, a sometimes threatened but seldom-used authority.

…they didn’t find this story particularly newsworthy.  It didn’t generate a whole lot of talk on Morning Joe either, in fact I don’t recall any, but why would it?  After all the internal investigation headed by an Obama donor leaked it was unlikely there would be any criminal charges filed and the president himself said there was no corruption involved.  Where’s the story there?

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: This is a gift to the GOP.

If I was a member of the GOP I would go on every morning & afternoon show that I’m invited and when questioned about this report and investigation say something like:

Well I think it’s very fair to question the credibility of an investigation commissioned by those who are being investigated like the IRS scandal for example when a political donor to the president leaked that there was unlikely to bring criminal charges even though we have people repeatedly taking the fifth in that investigation, or in the Benghazi investigation where the political allies of the White House are insisting congressional investigations be dropped

When they bring up Christie interview with Dianne Sawyer they should compare it to the President’s statement to Bill O’Reilly that there was “not even a SMIDGEN of corruption.” No matter what direction the question comes, some variation of these answer should be the response.

This is a gift to the GOP if they are smart enough to use it.

Closing Thought: What would the reaction of the MSM be if Chris Christie had  “joked” about using lane closures to punish mayors who didn’t support him in 2010?

Update 2: Via Glenn, Howie Carr reminds us we don’t have to go to the Obama Administration to find Democrats presumed innocent

Oddly, however, the hacks rounded up over the last few days, well, let’s put it this way. They voted for Obama 100 percent. They think Obamacare’s great. How could they possibly be guilty as charged?

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Olimometer 2.52

It’s Friday, $817 shy of the mortgage. Four days to get it.

It can still be done but only if you if you hit DatipJar below

 

If 61 of you hit Subscribe at $20 a month subscribers this site will be able to cover its bills for a full year and things will be a lot more like Alito and Kagan around here than Kennedy & Roberts reliable..