Three Cheers for Reince's Boycott

Finally, Republicans tell the media where to get off!

Conservatives have been frustrated by left-wing media bias for a long, long time.  Alas, perhaps the most aggravating aspect of the media's war against conservatism in all its forms is the fact that our supposedly-conservative leaders almost never acknowledge it, much less actually try to fight back.

About the only inspiring event in 2012's otherwise wretched campaign was Newt Gingrich's full-throated assault on the media "moderators" of the Republican debates.  For one brief, shining moment he looked like a potential standardbearer - then, as ever, the Republican party sank back into the go-along-get-along morass that's kept the leftist machine moving mostly unencumbered for a century.

Balls, By Jingo!

Is the Republican Party permanently fated to lead us gently into that good night?  Maybe not.  Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus has announced a move that's been overdue for at least a decade - which by Republican standards makes it an immediate response.

The Republican National Committee won't partner with NBC or CNN on 2016 presidential debates, chairman Reince Priebus warned in letters sent to the two TV networks Monday, unless they agree to pull the plug on recently announced documentary programs about former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

"This special treatment is unfair to the candidates for the Democratic nomination in 2016 who might compete against Secretary Clinton," Priebus wrote in the letters, specifically naming Vice President Joe Biden, Govs. Martin O'Malley, Andrew Cuomo and John Hickenlooper, and Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar. "Should Clinton compete in the general election," he continued, their programs could also disadvantage the GOP nominee.

"It's appalling to know executives at major networks like NBC and CNN who have donated to Democrats and Hillary Clinton have taken it upon themselves to be Hillary Clinton's campaign operatives," Priebus said in a statement. "I hope Americans will question the credibility of these networks and that NBC and CNN will reconsider their partisan actions and cancel these political ads masked as unbiased entertainment."

Wait, what's this?  Evidence of political bias so overwhelming that the RNC might actually call the media on it in a substantive way, as distinct from demeaning and ineffective whining?   Can it be that the pending hours-long hagiographies of Hillary Clinton were a bridge too far for even the lickspittles of Republican establishment officialdom?

We thought we'd never live to see this day, after having to suffer through the odious Candy Crowley's totally biased "moderation" and verbal support of Obama's lies in the presidential debates, only to see absolutely no official response by the Republican Party.  Not that it would have done much good at that point, but at least they could have tried.

Yet here stands Mr. Priebus in a most unaccustomed place for the RNC.

He has not only gotten the RNC onto solid political ground, complaining about something that even the dullest low-information-voter can understand to be completely unfair and even un-American.

He has not only occupied the moral high ground in an unimpeachable way that even the lies of the media cannot effectively twist.

He has, furthermore, not merely aligned himself with the overwhelming majority of the American people, most of whom are already well aware that the media shamelessly deceive them every day.

No, Mr. Priebus has accomplished something even rarer than these: he has actually managed to take a position that even the far-left nutters have a difficult time complaining about with a straight face.

Careful, Your Slip Is Showing

Not that that stops them from trying, of course.  In one of the most unintentionally hilarious articles we've read in a while, the loons at Salon set out to ridicule Mr. Priebus for his eminently sensible and principled stance.  Their take seems to be that Mr. Priebus would rather not have any primary debates at all because Republican policies are so transparently revolting that the less said about them the better.  Apparently the inmates of Salon think, or imagine Mr. Priebus to think, that elections can be won if nobody knows anything about your candidate, in the face of the massed chorus of the media proclaiming the other guy as God.

However, no doubt without meaning to, the article happens to trip over and clearly state three truths so transcendently blinding that even Salon printed them without so much as a disclaimer:

Priebus wants to avoid those two channels in part because they’re hostile to conservatives, and the moderators they select will likely actively seek to embarrass the candidates. Republicans are still mad that in 2007, NBC allowed Chris Matthews to co-moderate a Republican debate. They sort of have a point — he’s a shouty Democrat, and likely had no respect for the people onstage...There’s really no reason why conservative journalists shouldn’t be moderating, or at least co-moderating, Republican debates. [emphasis added]

Wait... what?  Consider what Salon is openly admitting here:

1. CNN and NBC are hostile to conservatives.  Of course, this has been obvious for at least twenty years, but for all that time the media has attempted to maintain the unanimous lie that they're just being unbiased and it's only reality that's biased against conservatism.  For Salon to openly admit that, yes, these two major networks have a very strong political stance just as conservatives have always claimed, is startling.

2. Chris Matthews is a rude and vulgar hack.  Again: the media has always maintained that Republicans are inherently disrespectable and get no more rotten tomatoes than they deserve (fewer really), but here's Salon admitting that conservative objections "have a point."  From this the dam will inevitably burst: if Chris Matthews is unfit to moderate Republican debates, in what substantive way is he any different from 90% of the rest of mainstream journalism?  He's not - so Salon has effectively conceded that Reince Priebus' boycott is sensible and justified even while attempting to argue the opposite.

3. Conservative journalists have the right to moderate conservative debates.  Now, the article specifically cites Byron York and Rich Lowry, who while definitely conservative are hardly the equal of, say, Rush Limbaugh or Mark Steyn.  But it's still an astonishing admission, since both York and Lowry work for openly conservative employers.  We'd have expected Salon, if they made this concession at all, to cite the "house conservatives" of otherwise liberal establishment organs like David Brooks at the New York Times, who can be relied upon to carry the Left's water if not actually perform their wetwork.

Do Pigs Have Wings?

To sum up - Reince Priebus has taken a strong public stand that places the Republican Party in a place where most of America is in agreement, opposed to a foe most of America holds in contempt, and for reasons that even the most fevered partisan opponents can't coherently undermine.  How stunning is that?

No doubt next week we'll hear he's thrown in the towel and that the debates will be moderated by Michael Moore.  But for now, let's celebrate and applaud this once-in-a-decade fit of boldness and strength!

Read other articles by Hobbes or other articles on Partisanship.
Reader Comments

Well, yes Reince has finally stuck his toe in the water to see how warm it is. A Newt Ginrich he will never be - far too polite to call a spade a spade. Lets see how far the Rinos let him go with his new found courage. There were far too many times in the debates where we expected the truth to be spoken but they wimped out. The Libs are far better a bluffing and lying and our current leaders are mostly cowards.

August 13, 2013 11:11 AM

Wait-- the Republican Party is still around? Thought they died off years ago. Who knew.

Seriously though, this Reince act is way too little way too late. If it's even real - and not just posturing - it's nothing more than a side act. Who cares what NBC does anymore. They're deeply invested in socialist policies and politicians. We're managing decline at this point, nothing more.

August 13, 2013 11:19 AM

It's about time! Quite frankly Reince doesn't go far enough. We need moderators like Styne, Limbaugh and Levin. It's time that we boldly put the conservative message high on the mantlepiece of the campaign and let the chips fall where they may. Does it hurt any more to lose by one vote or 10,000,000 votes, you still lose. The bottom line is however that if the conservative message were put before the people it would be a rout. I'm sick and tired of the Rhinos being worried about being invited to certain cocktail parties than winning. They are big government through and through and it's time to let the real conservatives take the reins. It long overdue.

August 13, 2013 1:31 PM

Do you know who your local Rino is? Gov. Crist of Florida showed us when, after loosing to a conservative for Senate, he switched parties and joined the democrats. You may have also noticed that the blue dog democrats are a thing of the past. Where did they go? Moderate Democrats are calling themselves Republicans these days. Christie is a Moderate Democrat pretending to be a republican. It has been a winning combination: other moderate democrats vote for you, independents vote for you, and conservatives, holding their noses, vote for you as the lesser of two evils.

The untold story is of how a conservative presidential candidate got the moderate democrats, the independents, and the conservatives to vote for him. For some reason the National Republicans think a moderate democrat is just the ticket. Probably because most of them are moderate democrats themselves. Smaller government, fiscal responsibility, and free market solutions used to be the Republican thought before the Bush's ran for office. I guess they were just moderate democrats as well. The vapid hatred of the liberals for such moderates was due to doctrinal differences with the liberal religion.

August 13, 2013 2:00 PM
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