On Wednesday’s Daily Rundown, Chuck Todd, senior White House correspondent for NBC News, ridiculed Republican Senate candidate Joe Carr’s announcement of his U.S. Senate run as a “Keystone cops episode” over an online campaign announcement that misspelled the word “senate.” Carr is a Tennessee state representative and Tea Party candidate challenging sitting incumbent Republican U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander in that state’s primary.
TODD: …and Carr’s announcement played like something of a Keystone Cops episode. Carr actually misspelled the word “Senate” on his website.
The word “Senate” was misspelled as “Sentate.”
Todd’s editorial choice to mock Carr as a “Keystone Cop” over something as minor as a misspelling is in sharp contrast to Todd’s choice not to mock or even initially report on a sitting American president’s three gaffes on Jay Leno’s Tonight Show only two weeks ago.
1. Obama told Leno Vladmir Putin was the “head of the KGB.” No he wasn’t. Not even close.
2. Obama confused the Summer Olympics with the Winter Olympics.
3. Obama can see South Carolina from the Gulf of Mexico.
The next day, Todd played video of Obama’s Putin gaffe on the “Daily Rundown” without mentioning the president’s error.
After being criticized, Todd did finally mention Obama’s Putin error, but unless I missed it, Obama’s other gaffes went unreported and surely weren’t mocked like Carr’s misspelling.
Todd’s focus and ridicule of something as meaningless as a misspelling is a common tactic the media use against Republicans. Even the smallest of mistakes are seized upon and amplified as a way to convince voters the candidate is incompetent and therefore not ready to hold office.
What generally happens is that “Saturday Night Live” and Jon Stewart pick up Todd’s cue to further this undermining narrative.
Meanwhile, Obama’s factual errors are either downplayed or memory-holed.
Though Todd’s Daily Rundown airs on MSNBC, unlike his cable news colleagues, Todd presents himself as an objective journalist.
Follow John Nolte on Twitter @NolteNC