Newsbusters catches Stephanopoulos committing journalism

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Newsbuster Scott Whitlock reminds us once again that the reason conservatives don't like the media is simply that reporters aren't on the payroll of the Republican Party:

ABC's George Stephanopoulos Frets to McCain: Tax Cuts Will 'Increase the Deficit'

By Scott Whitlock (Bio | Archive)

Tue, 01/26/2010 - 11:00 ET

Good Morning America's George Stephanopoulos played defense for the White House on Tuesday. While talking with John McCain about Obama's 2010 proposals, he sounded annoyed that the Senator's ideas for job creation would include tax cuts: "But, those tax cuts are going to increase the deficit, aren't they, sir?"

Now, here's the actual exchange in question:

MCCAIN: Tax cuts. Payroll tax cuts. Giving more tax incentives and breaks to small businesses. Making sure that we do not raise taxes, which may happen if the present tax cuts lapse. There's a lot of things that we can do to- including, by the way, a path to some kind of fiscal sanity. Another $1.4 trillion-

STEPHANOPOULOS: But, those tax cuts are going to increase the deficit, aren't they, sir?

So, in a span of three sentences, John McCain called for both "tax cuts" and "fiscal sanity." Stephanopoulos asked the most obvious follow-up question in the world -- won't those tax cuts increase the deficit? And Newsbuster Scott Whitlock thinks this is Stephanopoulos "fret[ting]" and "play[ing] defense for the White House."

In response to McCain making two seemingly contradictory statements, Stephanopoulos did the only responsible thing a journalist could do -- he pressed his guest to reconcile those statements. And that bothers the Newsbusters crew. This is what they mean when they rant about the "liberal media": Journalists sometimes fail to ask "how high" when told by Republicans to jump.

ABC, NewsBusters
George Stephanopoulos, Scott Whitlock
2010 State of the Union
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