During the state GOP convention in Macon last weekend, a number of Republicans complained of bias in the national media.
Which normally would be as newsworthy as declaring water to be wet. Except that the complainers were Herman Cain supporters, and the object of their discontent was Fox News.
The cable TV network was ignoring the Cain campaign in favor of old friends who served as professional commentators, they charged.
This spring, Fox News suspended, then terminated, its contracts with former U.S. House speaker Newt Gingrich and former U.S. senator Rick Santorum, both of whom were considering GOP presidential runs.
But how to measure pro-Gingrich or anti-Cain bias? Why, you call Media Matters, the liberal organization that closely monitors Fox News. Spokeswoman Jess Levin provided a tally of Fox News appearances by possible GOP candidates between Jan. 1 and May 13 – the day before Cain’s speech to Georgia Republicans in Macon.
The results might surprise you. Cain actually made more appearances on Fox News than either Gingrich or Santorum. Though not as many as Donald Trump or Michele Bachman.
Mitt Romney was close to the bottom – mostly likely the result of his under-the-radar strategy.
Mike Huckabee, who bowed of the GOP contest on Saturday, topped all – but his tally includes episodes of his weekly Fox News show. Here’s the total:
– Mike Huckabee: 55
– Michele Bachmann: 29
– Donald Trump: 29
– John Bolton: 24
– Tim Pawlenty: 21
– Herman Cain: 19
– Ron Paul: 14
– Newt Gingrich: 13
– Rick Santorum: 13
– Sarah Palin: 12
– Rudy Giuliani: 8
– Haley Barbour: 5
– Gary Johnson: 2
– Mitt Romney: 3
– Buddy Roemer: 1
On the Newt Gingrich front, AJC’s Politifact Georgia takes a look at Newt Gingrich’s declaration to Republicans in Macon last week that Barack Obama is the “food stamp president.”
And the Washington Post’s Dana Milbank issues a spirited defense of Gingrich as a needed voice of Republican moderation.
Also in today’s Washington Post, reporters Phil Rucker and Lori Montgomery include this passage about the collapse of the Gang of Six effort at negotiating a federal deficit deal:
[U.S. Sen. Saxby] Chambliss suggested Tuesday that the group, at the very least, owes its Senate allies a report on its work.
Those close to the talks said trouble has been brewing for weeks. Earlier this month, the group appeared to be tantalizingly close to an agreement. But then, Democratic sources said, [U.S. Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Okla.] started bringing up new issues at every meeting, or demanding that old ones be reconsidered.
For example, Coburn began pressing for sharper cuts to Social Security than had been previously agreed to, according to sources familiar with the talks who spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the private nature of the negotiations. And during a three-hour session late Monday, the sources said, Coburn demanded deep and immediate cuts to Medicare that went beyond anything previously proposed.
On Tuesday morning, Coburn called Durbin to say he was dropping out. He later told reporters that the group was at an “impasse” and complained that Democrats were unwilling to do enough to cut spending, particularly on federal retirement programs such as Social Security and Medicare.
Earlier this week, in an Atlanta appearance before Carter Associates, a real estate development firm, U.S. Sen. Johnny Isakson gave a relatively gloomy prognosis for the real estate industry in Georgia.
Recovery is “five to seven years away,” and new lending restrictions are counter productive. A clip:
Also on the real estate front, Scott Henry of Creative Loafing has a look at the City Hall East deal in Atlanta:
But now I’m told the negotiations between the city and Jamestown are over and both sides are ready to sign on the line that is dotted. And yet, the whole deal could still go kablooey this week if the federal government doesn’t approve $15 million in tax credits that the city and the developer have already agreed to.
- By Jim Galloway, Political Insider