Posted by Curt on 22 February, 2015 at 10:34 am. 122 comments already!


Noah Rothman:

How do you know that Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker has taken at least temporary custody of frontrunner status in the race for the GOP presidential nomination in 2016? Beyond, of course, the polls that show him rocketing to the front of the pack in critical early primary states likeIowa? The political press is coming down hard on him and his nascent campaign.

After three unambiguous statewide victories in a Democratic state in just four years, Scott Walker is thoroughly vetted. If there were skeletons in his closet, the media and the myriad opposition researchers scrutinizing his past would have found them by now. “Scott Walker could very well be indicted in the coming days,” the forlorn MSNBC host Ed Schultz predictedon the night of Walker’s second statewide victory. He never was.

So, the press has taken a keen interest in catching Walker in unflattering moments or making hash out of otherwise minor controversies. Rudy Giuliani was speaking at an event for Walker when he sent the political media into a manic frenzy in which reporter and pundit alike tripped over one another to denounce what they dubbed the New York City’ mayor’s callous and quite possibly racist assertion that President Barack Obama doesn’t love his country. Only now, on day five of that story, is it finally beginning to fade from the media’s focus.

When Walker refused to denounce the former Big Apple mayor to the media’s satisfaction, they pounced. “What Scott Walker did ought to disqualify him as a serious presidential contender,”Washington Post columnist Dana Milbank hyperventilated. “Clownish,” insisted Rachel Maddow Show producer Steve Benen. “Spineless,” The Washington Post editorial board averred.

And all this merely because the Badger State governor said “the mayor can speak for himself” despite conceding that his comments were “aggressive.” The press would not have been satisfied unless Walker had thrown himself upon a pyre in penitence for the sin of having attended an event at which the president’s values were questioned and his honor attacked. It was bizarre to see the political press respond to Giuliani’s remarks as though they had been personally insulted.

This episode did provide the media with the opportunity to quiz every Republican candidateabout how they feel about a politician out of office for over a decade. Despite the fact that the head of the Democratic National Committee is involved in a significant quid pro quo scandaland remains suspect of interfaith marriage and the Vice President of the United States is aserial groper, Democrats are spared association with these figures by an energetic political media.

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