I didn’t watch the Dem debate Wednesday but watching parts and reading through the transcript—it could have been written and produced by the Republican National Committee. The moderators’ questions consisted largely of GOP talking points, including:
- Mr. Obama, do you understand how offensive your “clinging to religion” comments are? Do you really understand?
- Mr. Obama, why don’t you wear a flag lapel pin?
- Mr. Obama, do you think Rev. Wright loves America?
- Hillary, why do you lie so much?
- Will you both pledge to not raise taxes?
- Mr. Obama, isn’t it reasonable to question your patriotism, given your friendship with 60s radical William Ayers?
- Hillary, would you withdraw troops from Iraq knowing it would set back all the gains we’ve made?
Now, clearly these are issues Republicans will bring up in the general election. Not that any of them are actually issues, as in key to governing the country or setting policy. That’s exactly the point. If the GOP has to engage in debate about issues, domestic or foreign policy, they will have to defend their record, and it ain’t pretty, my friend. Hence their obsession distractions and trivia.
But it’s one thing for Republicans to try to transform the political discussion into this kind of crap; it’s another when the media does it for them.
As I say, I didn’t see the debate, but if Josh Marshall’s compilation (below) is any indication, it was a travesty.
In honor of this achievement in objective reporting, I’ve added a new category to my blog: brain dead media.