CNN’s Soledad O’Brien did not do her homework again.
O’Brien, who embarrassed herself before the nation when she madeclear she did not know what “critical race theory” was, attempted tohector Rep. Allen West (R-Fla.) about West’s claims that members ofthe Progressive Caucus were communists.
O’Brien was first oblivious to West’s correct point that many stations,like CNN, had not played his full remarks in which he was respondingto a moderator’s question about how many communists West thoughtwere in Congress. West specifically said the “communists” he wasspeaking of were members of the Congressional Progressive Caucus.
Here is the transcript of West’s original remarks:
Moderator (reading question submitted in writing): What percentage of the Americanlegislature do you think are card-carrying Marxists or international Socialists?
West: No, that’s a good question. I believe there’s about 78 to 81 members of theDemocrat Party that are members of the Communist Party…
…No, they actually don’t hide it. It’s called the Congressional Progressive Caucus.
What the mainstream networks have failed to let theaudience know is that West was responding to a question that wasspecifically asked, making it seem like West started speaking ofcommunists out of the blue. And they have left the last part of West’sresponse on the cutting room floor.
So, after misleading her audience a bit by not playing West’s fullremarks in the proper context, O’Brien started naming randommembers of the Congressional Progressive Caucus in a tone that triedto tell the audience that those members were in fact not communists.
In a heated exchange, O’Brien asked, “So Keith Ellison is acommunist? … Raúl Grijalva is a communist?”
Except, according to Trevor Loudon, Grijalva, a left-wing ArizonaCongressman, does have connections to the Communist Party andthose sympathetic to it.
In 1993, Grijalva penned a column, according to Loudon, for thePeople’s Weekly World, which is the official paper for the CommunistParty USA network and collaborates with the Young CommunistLeague. Grijalva penned the column in the November 13, 1993 issue.
In 2002, the People’s Weekly World, according to Loudon, rana column by Joe Bernick, whom Loudon describes as a “localCommunist Party leader, touting Grijalva’s victory in the Democraticprimary. The headline for the column was, “People Gain In ArizonaPrimaries.”
Further, as Loudon documents, Grijalva has been supported byCommunist Party member Susan Thorpe and has worked withmembers of the Arizona Communist Party on local initiatives.
And Grijalva has not disappointed his supporters, as HE,according to an ideology axis put together by govtrack.us, is the mostleft-leaning member of Congress. No data point can be further to theleft than Grijalva’s data point on the axis.
O’Brien thought she was tripping up West by mindlessly name-checking Grijalva as an example of someone who she thought did nothave any communist leanings. Instead, it served as another exampleof O’Brien’s woeful ignorance about the issues andpeople she discusses on the air.