John King's interview with President Obama started off Sunday's State of the Union with John King. King first asked about the economy: where are the jobs? is the recession over? Next was questions about health care reform, the Baucus bill, insurance fees for "Cadillac plans", and coverage for illegal aliens.
A few odd technical difficulties going through the first commercial break.
The second part of the interview started off with questions about Afghanistan, his war strategy, and the election. King then asked about a lunch that the President had with President Clinton and what he may have said about the North Korean Leader, Kim Jong Il. Next was a question about the CIA investigation and that former CIA Directors have opposed the investigation.
Part three of the interview started off talking about racism and the swine flu vaccination. The President downplayed the factor of race in the political discussions, outburts, and protests.
Senator Mitch McConnell (R), the Senate Minority Leader, talked live with King immediately after the interview with the President aired. King asked the Senator about his recent comments about "winning" the health care debate. McConnell supports the President's actions in Afghanistan.
James Carville and Mary Matalin joined King in the DC Studio for a few quick comments about the interview with the President. (They'll be back later in the program.)
John King was in Connecticut last week and for the American Dispatch visited the University of Connecticut campus and a lab testing the H1N1 vaccine. Its a little disturbing to hear that this vaccine is incubated in an insect:
KING: Protein Sciences Quality Control Director Clifton McPherson says the process here is different than most influenza vaccines. Traditional flu shots are made using eggs infected with the virus. Protein Sciences splices protein from the virus into caterpillar cells.
MCPHERSON: So we never have to handle live flu virus. We use the insect cells basically as protein factories and then we purify the protein from the insect cells, and that purified protein is then our vaccine.
Reliable Sources with Howard Kurtz started off discussing the charge of racism on part of the opposition to President Obama. Amy Holmes, Eric Deggans, and Chris Cillizza discussed the charges. Next, the panel discussed the Obama news blitz on Sunday morning. And finally, the panel moved to discuss the ACORN scandal and why mainstream media lagged behind FOX in the coverage of it.
The second half of Reliable Sources focused on the media trading bad celebrity apologies for program ratings with Amy Argetsinger and Jane Velez-Mitchell. They also discussed the John Edwards paternity test scandal.
Next was Mark Jurkowitz and Alicia Shepard to discuss the falling approval ratings of the news media.
The Sound of Sunday focused on the President's five Sunday morning interviews. Carville and Matalin were back to discuss the interviews further. Carville mentioned an article that he wrote for the Financial Times: Obama can avoid midterm blues. King wrapped up the discussion with a "soft touchy moment" playing a clip from SNL impersonating Carville and Matalin had a few words to say about it.
The CNN Diner segment was recorded in Pawtucket, Rhode Island and he spoke with Father Joseph Paquette, Daniel Gold, and Mindy Bailey about jobs, health care, racism.
In the studio this morning to discuss the President's interviews were Ed Henry, Dana Bash, and Jessica Yellin. During the lightening round, King asked the panel to response to a comment made by Republican Senator Lindsey Graham criticizing the President for appearing "on everything but the food channel." I like the way that Bash responded to the question:
BASH: I'm going to be, kind of -- you know, the "anti" person here, because I don't get the question. I mean, I think the president should go out there and push what is his top priority.
Why not? You know, go out. You know, go on every single channel. Go on the food channel, if you want to, if you think that's going to help you. Do it. Why not?
The Last Word went to Senator Carl Levin (D), chairman of the Senate Armed Forces Committee, King asked him about the report on Afghanistan and what the President should do.
At the end of Reliable Sources, Howard Kurtz commented on the recent FOX News ad that accused the other news networks of not covering the protests in Washington, D.C. Here's the clip:
I was planning on mentioning this in my Tuesday post, but Kurtz' segment this morning prompted me to include it in tonight's post. One thing that Kurtz failed to show was the response that CNN has been airing. Here are a few screen caps from that response:
I'll be the first to admit that I'm not a fan of FOX News and very rarely watch their programming. But I think all news networks need to finally realize that their viewers are intelligent enough to be the judge of whether or not they are covering the right stories and whether they are doing a fair, unbiased job. I don't need any of them telling that they are fair, balanced, unbiased, most trusted, or that the other network isn't. I have internet access and a remote control - if I'm watching or reading something that I think isn't good journalism, I'm free to change the channel or find another news source. (I'll get off my soap box now.)