Well, of course. This week, the news media has relied on innuendo, speculation, unnamed sources and wishful thinking with its nonstop coverage of the Democratic Party’s impeachment “inquiry.” The prospect of impeachment has delighted the press, which has gleefully bandied the “I-word” around like a magical spell this week. But journalists have been in love with the idea of impeachment anything for quite some time.
“Their obsession with evicting President Trump from the White House predates his actual presidency. By November 10, 2016 — just two days after the election — television talking heads were already conjuring up theoretical scenarios in which Donald Trump could be removed from office,” writes Bill D’Agostino, a research analyst for Newsbusters.org who unearthed the damning video evidence of yore.
“Since then, TV journalists have amassed quite a repertoire of possible causes for a premature end to the Trump White House, including (but not limited to): his tax returns; his family’s business dealings, both home and abroad; his firing of various cabinet officials; and of course, his tweets,” he notes.
There are already impeachment ironies afoot, though.
“D’oh! The Democrats’ impeachment parade is raising lots of money — for Trump’s re-election campaign and other GOPers,” reports Twitchy.com, while Politico points out that “GOP cashes in on impeachment.”
Meanwhile, the idea of impeachment is subject to interpretation. A few headlines from the last 24 hours:
“Democrats fear impeachment blowback in 2020” (Politico); “Things are just impeachy now” (PJ Media); “Impeaching to the choir” (The New York Post); “Late night hosts react to Trump impeachment probe” (The Hollywood Reporter); “Does Donald Trump want to be impeached?” (The New York Times); “Trump impeachment inquiry theatrics” (Fox Business Network); “Will there be enough votes to impeach Donald Trump?” (MSNBC); “What is impeachment and how does it work?” (NBC News).
RONNA SPELLS IT ALL OUT
Here’s a tidy summary of impeachment obsession this week.
“There’s been a double standard from Democrats since Day One with this president. They have refused to accept the results of the election, boycotting the inauguration, the two-year Russia hoax where the president was clearly exonerated, no collusion, no obstruction. And now this, where they rush to judgment in a knee-jerk way to bring impeachment proceedings when they haven’t even read the transcript or heard from the inspector general,” Republican National Committee chair Ronna McDaniel tells Fox News.
“They are so determined to stop this president in his tracks and refute the will of the American people, they are putting our democracy at risk. I think it’s something we should say — they are undermining our democracy with what they’re doing, and they should be called out. We will do it in November when we send them home.”
CLASSIC CLIMATE PREDICTION FAILURES
While the nation wrestles with Climate Week, one organization reveals the follies of it all.
“Wrong again: 50 years of failed eco-pocalyptic predictions,” write Myron Ebell, director of the Competitive Enterprise Institute’s Center for Energy and Environment, and Steven J. Milloy, a climate scholar with the organization.
“Modern doomsayers have been predicting climate and environmental disaster since the 1960s. They continue to do so today. None of the apocalyptic predictions with due dates as of today have come true,” the pair explain.
“While such predictions have been and continue to be enthusiastically reported by a media eager for sensational headlines, the failures are typically not revisited.”
Here are their favorite examples, and their sources:
“Already too late: Dire famine forecast by 1975” (The Los Angeles Times, 1967); “Everyone will disappear in a cloud of blue steam by 1989” (The New York Times, 1969); “Scientists predicts a new ice age by 21st century” (The Boston Globe, 1970); “America subject to water rationing by 1974 and food rationing by 1980” (Redlands Daily Facts, 1970); “U.S. scientists sees new ice age coming” (The Washington Post, 1971); and “Great peril to life: Gas pares away Earth’s ozone” (United Press International, 1974).
Fox News Channel remains the most-watched cable network of all for the 37th consecutive week according to Nielsen, attracting 2.5 million viewers, beating ESPN, which drew 2.3 million, MSNBC with 1.5 million and HGTV with 1.1 million. CNN was in seventh place with 775,000 viewers.
Sean Hannity remains the ratings master in the cable realm, drawing 3.4 million viewers to his prime-time show last week. In fact, presentations of “Hannity,” “Tucker Carlson Tonight,” “The Ingraham Angle,” “The Five” and “Special Report with Bret Baier” numbered 17 of the top 30 cable telecasts.
Some other programming notes: the midday news program “Outnumbered Overtime with Harris Faulkner”outpaced ABC’s “Strahan and Sara” throughout the week; a rare case of cable trouncing broadcast fare. Debuting on Sunday, Maria Bartiromo’s one-hour investigative documentary on artificial intelligence drew 823,000 viewers and was ranked among the top-10 programs in cable news.
Lastly, MSNBC’s prime-time “Climate Change Forum” attracted 1.3 million viewers — down by 27% compared to the network’s normal programming at that time — and aced by the aforementioned Mr. Carlson, who garnered 2.7 million viewers in the time slot.
POLL DU JOUR
• 50% say Democrats will have a tougher time if they nominate someone who is gay.
• 49% say Democrats will have a tougher time if they nominate a woman.
• 39% say Democrats will have a tougher time if they nominate “a person of color.”
• 35% say Democrats will have a tougher time if they nominate someone over 70.
• 33% say Democrats will have a tougher time if they nominate someone who is a white man over 70.
Source: A Fox News poll of 504 Democratic primary voters conducted Sept. 15-17.
• Kindly follow Jennifer Harper on Twitter @HarperBulletin.
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