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FOX News Makes Tom DeLay A Saint And Cynthia McKinney The Criminal

Reported by Ellen - April 6, 2006

FOX News’ high-tech lynching of Cynthia McKinney continued unabated last night (4/5/06), at least between 9-10 PM ET, during Hannity & Colmes. But Tom DeLay was granted sainthood for having resigned his Congressional seat in the midst of legal troubles and an uncertain re-election. DeLay promptly proved what kind of a stand-up guy he really is by calling McKinney a racist anti-Semite.

The FOX News Break got to McKinney first. Steve Centanni played a clip of her on FOX & Friends not answering a question about whether or not she hit the officer. Centanni continued solemnly, “The chief of the US Capitol police said there’s no doubt McKinney hit the officer and he wants her arrested.”

Tom DeLay, on the other hand, did nothing wrong and those things he didn’t do wrong were not worth discussing. Unlike Cynthia McKinney (whose every move, every statement in her confrontation with a police officer has been analyzed and questioned), all we really needed to know about DeLay (according to FOX News) is that he is a victim.

Sean Hannity spun it by saying, “The president’s numbers have been down a little bit over Iraq and some other issues and he’s been demonized like you’ve been demonized.” Comment: Down a little? I wonder what Hannity considers down a lot.

Delay said he has “no worries whatsoever” about his prosecution because it’s all the fault of the unscrupulous Democrats. “They are going to the courts, they’re using their trial lawyer friends to drag people through the mud... They are trying to criminalize politics. They had this strategy that they announced years ago that they were going to engage in this politics of personal destruction and character assassination and it’s real.”

DeLay continued by saying that the Abramoff affair “doesn’t connect with me in any way... Yes, I had some former staffers do bad things and violate the trust that I gave them as staffers but you know, I have hundreds of people that have worked for me over 21 years and most of them are wonderful people with great integrity trying to do the right thing.”

Poor guy. On top of being the victim of a Democratic witch hunt, he also had the incredibly bad luck of hiring two staffers who have pleaded guilty to felonies and a third under investigation. No wonder he avoided any questions from Alan Colmes. Who knows what kind of dirty tricks Colmes might have tried to pull!

That was all Hannity needed to know about DeLay’s ethics. Hannity chose not to discuss any of the many, many other ethical questions that have dogged Delay, such as: his role in killing an investigation into labor abuses in Marianas Islands, bribing a congressman to vote for the Medicare bill or enjoying a luxurious European vacation paid for by an Indian tribe and a gambling services company, both of which opposed gambling legislation DeLay soon voted against. That payment was funneled through then-lobbyist and now-felon Jack Abramoff. (H/T Think Progress. You can read plenty more about DeLay’s illustrious career on their website.)

Instead of dwelling on any of those unpleasantries, Hannity focused on FOX News’ “real” villain, Cynthia McKinney. Now Hannity was ready to probe! “Have you seen her in other instances – Do you believe she’s a racist?”

Just moments after DeLay had complained about “politics of personal destruction and character destruction” by the Democrats, he attacked McKinney. “She has a long history for blaming everything on the color of her skin. She plays the victim card, the race card. She and her father and others are even anti-Semitic. She has that reputation.”

Kudos to Alan Colmes for calling DeLay’s remarks “outrageous” during the next segment with Cynthia McKinney’s attorney, James Myart. “He’s using this to accuse her of anti-Semitism... She’s been critical of some of our monies going to Israel to defend certain territories. That’s policy issue. I don’t think you’re an anti-Semite because you say those things or because your father may say something that may be deemed anti-Semitic.” Noting that many Congressional representatives don’t wear their pins when they enter the Capitol, Colmes said. “I’d like to know how many white males were stopped or have been asked to, you know, hold it for a second on their way in. I’d just be curious to know that.”

Sean Hannity’s bullying tone with Myart was a polar opposite of the deference shown to DeLay. “Hey, Counselor, I got a very simple question. I’d like a simple answer to the simple question.” With his finger jabbing the air and his voice full of outrage never displayed over DeLay, Abramoff, Rudy, Ney or Cunningham, Hannity demanded, “Did Cynthia McKinney punch a police officer? Yes or no!”

Criminalization of politics? No, as our own ChrisH says, it’s the politicization of crime.

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