Andrea Mitchell tees up phony GOP talking points

Blog ››› ››› JAMISON FOSER

MSNBC's Andrea Mitchell just invited Republican Senator Judd Gregg to criticize the White House for not releasing a mid-year economic report:

MITCHELL: Senator I wanted to ask you about the delay in the mid-year review, the White House economic report. Usually it comes out in July, the White House now says it's going to be delayed. They say it's just that they haven't gotten it all together yet. You see a different scenario here; what are you suggesting?

And Gregg took the invitation to suggest some sort of conspiracy:

GREGG: The fact that those numbers aren't going to come out until congress goes on a break here in August is, I think a little interesting that that decision, that that's the situation.

But does the White House really say they just haven't gotten it done? No. White House press secretary Robert Gibbs actually pointed out yesterday that the mid-year review does not usually come out in July during presidential transition years:

GIBBS: Look, as happens in virtually every transition year in government, mid-year reviews tend to get pushed back because of the transition of moving people in and out of their former and current jobs. For instance, the mid-session review under the most previous administration took place on August 22. President Clinton's first year in office, the review was released on September the 1st.

So I think the notion that this is somehow motivated by anything other than a transition from one administration to the next is a little on the silly side.

So, let's recap: Mitchell brought up a phony controversy, explained it in a GOP-friendly way, ignored the White House's debunking of the controversy, and invited her Republican guest to allege some sort of conspiracy -- a conspiracy that has been debunked by the White House explanation Mitchell ignored.

I can't wait to see Howard Kurtz explain how this demonstrates MSNBC's leftward tilt.

Andrea Mitchell
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