One week after claiming that Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton's suggestion that Sen. Barack Obama "has not done the kind of spadework" that Clinton has done was "not coincidental," Rush Limbaugh returned to the subject on his January 14 show. While discussing Obama, Limbaugh twice used the word "spade," which can be used as a racial slur. Specifically, Limbaugh said that "Obama is holding his own against both of them [Bill and Hillary Clinton], doing more than his share of the 'spadework,' maybe even gaining ground at the moment, using not only the spade, ladies and gentlemen. But when he finishes with the spade in the garden of corruption planted by the Clintons, he turns to the hoe. And so the spadework and his expertise, using a hoe. He's faring well." "Spadework" is a common term among political figures and the media.
A New York Times article asserted that at a recent event, Michelle Obama, wife of Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Barack Obama, "nimbly entwin[ed] references to violence with her more usual admonitions that a history of racism and despair should not keep her husband" from office. But the article did not provide any specific quote from Obama's speech to support its claim that she had "entwin[ed] references to violence" or that she "evok[ed] dangers," as the headline stated. Moreover, the article acknowledged that "[n]ot everyone detected a double message in Mrs. Obama's remarks." Nonetheless, the Times cited purported complaints by unnamed "critics" that "raising the specter of violence is nothing more than an attempt to raise Senator Obama to mythic stature."
On the January 14 edition of MSNBC's Tucker, while discussing Sen. Barack Obama's speech at the Pentecostal Temple Church of God and Christ in Las Vegas, host Tucker Carlson asserted that "many black churches are basically political organizations."
An Associated Press article reported that House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn "expressed disappointment with Clinton after she said it took President Lyndon B. Johnson, a white politician, to finally realize King's dream of racial equality by signing the Civil Rights Act." But that is not what Clinton said.
On his January 10 Fox News Radio show, John Gibson aired a clip of MSNBC host Chris Matthews' recent comments about Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, which he described as "mind-blowing," and said, "[T]hose women out here who called me a sexist last night, you listen to this and you tell me who the sexist is."
Articles in Newsweek and The Washington Post mischaracterized a remark by former President Bill Clinton, claiming that he appeared to dismiss Sen. Barack Obama's campaign as "the biggest fairy tale I've ever seen." In fact, Clinton was referring to Obama's statements about his position on the Iraq war; he was not talking about the Obama campaign as the "biggest fairy tale." Further, the Newsweek article, as well as a New York Times article and a Washington Post op-ed, all truncated a comment by Hillary Clinton on the passage of civil rights legislation in the 1960s, omitting a portion of her remarks in which she referred to President John F. Kennedy.
January 9 was not the first time Chris Matthews has suggested that Hillary Clinton owes her political career to her husband's adultery. In 1999, when Clinton was running for the Senate for the first time, Matthews said: "I mean, it's hilarious, but isn't that her main claim, that she's the victim of the -- of the -- of the year?" later adding, "Now it's an election ca -- it's a bumper sticker. 'My husband cheated on me, make me senator.' "
On Hardball, Chris Matthews asked Bill Richardson: "What do you make of Hillary Clinton's performance on Saturday night right before the New Hampshire primary, this past Saturday night? There's been a lot of talk about this, the role that we in the media, that I personally played. There's a whole kind of -- all kind of discussion about the boys perhaps tackling the one woman candidate."
Chris Matthews -- who claimed that Sen. Hillary Clinton is a U.S. senator and presidential candidate because "her husband messed around" and that "[s]he didn't win [her Senate seat] on her merit" -- has an extensive history of attacking Clinton, but his sexist commentary has hardly been limited to her.
During an appearance on MSNBC's Morning Joe, NBC News' David Shuster mocked co-host Joy Behar of ABC's The View for her criticism of MSNBC host Chris Matthews' recent comments about Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, in which Matthews attributed Clinton's political success to her husband's "mess[ing] around." Shuster stated, "Yeah, you know, Joy Behar is well known for her political analysis" and then rolled his eyes, before purporting to "impersonat[e]" Behar.
Discussing recent comments by Chris Matthews about Sen. Hillary Clinton, Fox News contributor Jane Hall referred to what Matthews said about "how she got elected not on her own merits, but because of his [Bill Clinton] fooling around, as he put it. ... He said she wanted to bury his [Sen. Barack Obama] campaign and what would she do with the body? That she wanted to strangle Obama in the crib." Hall concluded: "[E]very woman I know saw the media coverage declaring her dead and said, 'You know, I've been through that. I've experienced that kind of sexism.' "
During MSNBC's coverage of the New Hampshire Primary, Hardball host Chris Matthews said of Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton's performance during a January 5 Democratic presidential candidates debate: "I wasn't clear at all that she won it. But maybe she was good enough to seem good enough here for women who wanted to root for her anyway." He further stated that the 2008 presidential election is "a pioneer opportunity for women voting -- especially older women voting, who may figure this is their last chance to elect a woman president."
On Your World, Marc Rudov, author of Under the Clitoral Hood: How to Crank Her Engine Without Cash, Booze, or Jumper Cables, asserted: "When Barack Obama speaks, men hear, 'Take off for the future.' And when Hillary Clinton speaks, men hear, 'Take out the garbage.' " During his appearance on the show, on-screen text read: "Rudov: Clinton's 'nagging voice' is reason she lost male vote."