Fox News falsely suggested that Senate Republicans have blocked Richard Cordray from heading the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) due to legitimate fears about how he would handle the agency, when in fact Senate Republicans have, in unprecedented fashion, said they would oppose any nominee whatsoever until changes are made to the structure of that agency.
On July 16, the Senate will be voting on several executive branch nominees that Republicans have opposed. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has said that if Senate Republicans refuse to allow an up-or-down vote on those candidates, he will push a change to Senate rules that will prevent the minority from filibustering executive appointments.
Previewing that action on the July 16 edition of Fox News' Fox & Friends, Fox News contributor Laura Ingraham said that Cordray's nomination had been blocked for "good reason." Ingraham explained that Cordray has been blocked because he is a "good friend" of Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), who proposed the creation of the CFPB, and that "a lot of people [are] very concerned about what he'll do in the regulatory process."
In fact, Cordray's potential actions as head of CFPB are irrelevant to the discussion as Republicans have said they would oppose any candidate for that office whatsoever.
In February of 2013, 43 Republican senators sent a letter to President Obama saying that they would block "any nominee, regardless of party affiliation," to the CFPB until structural changes were made to the agency. This is the first time in the history of the Senate that a nomination has been blocked for no reason other than a political party disagrees with the structure of the agency.
Cordray's qualifications include serving as Ohio's Attorney General where he recovered more than $2 billion for Ohio citizens and worked to protect consumers from fraudulent foreclosures and financial predators. Cordray also served as Ohio's State Treasurer.
From the July 12 edition of Courtside Entertainment Group's The Laura Ingraham Show:
Loading the player reg...
House Republicans reportedly plan to remove food stamp funding from the federal farm bill, a move that stands to further jeopardize the survival of the critical anti-poverty program. This move comes after years of right-wing media figures demonizing food stamp recipients as lazy or dependent, with Rush Limbaugh going so far as to propose dumpster diving as an alternative.
Here's a look back at some of the most egregious right-wing attacks on food stamps:
From the July 10 edition of Courtside Entertainment Group's The Laura Ingraham Show:
Loading the player reg...
Right-wing media have invented several conspiracy theories to attack the Senate comprehensive immigration reform bill, including claiming that the legislation provides free cars and cell phones for undocumented immigrants, and that it is a secret plot to create a permanent one-party system reminiscent of Marxist Russian premier Vladimir Lenin.
Radio host Laura Ingraham launched a series of vicious attacks on Texas State Senator Wendy Davis for her filibuster fight against the state's anti-choice bill, by asking Davis which children she "sees on the playground shouldn't be there" and bringing up Davis' personal history to try to discredit her.
In a June 27 tweet, Ingraham mocked characterizations of Davis as a hero after her successful filibuster of Texas' Senate Bill 5 (SB5), one of the nation's most restrictive abortion laws. In response to Davis' efforts, Ingraham tweeted a "question" to Davis: "Which kids that you see on the playground shouldn't be there?":
Ingraham pushed her attack further during the June 27 edition of her radio show. She seized on Davis' personal history as a teenage mother, who later became successful, to claim Davis is "the kind of person who should actually be advocating for life":
The attack mirrored one made by Texas Governor and former Republican presidential contender Rick Perry, who, according to Think Progress, used his speech at the Right To Life convention to claim Davis "hasn't learned from her own example":
According to Texas Observer staff writer Forrest Wilder, Davis responded to Perry's attack by saying "Rick Perry's statement is without dignity and tarnishes the high office he holds":
From the June 27 edition of The Laura Ingraham Show:
INGRAHAM: The amazing thing about Wendy Davis is that she became a mom while she was still in her teens and she lived in a trailer park for a time. She ended up graduating with honors from Harvard Law. Her life story actually indicates why you shouldn't give your children up. You should consider adoption, or figure out a way with family members to raise the child yourself, or take the adoption alternative. She went on to go to Harvard Law. Right, So why -- when you think about it, Wendy Davis should actually be the type of person who is advocating for life after her life story.
I mean -- you know what I would like to ask the Planned Parenthood folks, just look around you. Which of the children on the playground shouldn't be here right now? Point the children out who shouldn't be here. You're listening to your healthy radio addiction, the Laura Ingraham Show.
In the short time since the Supreme Court invalidated provisions of the Defense Of Marriage Act (DOMA), conservatives who have opposed marriage equality for years have been painting themselves as the unfairly persecuted victims of the ruling.
Having always had difficulty explaining how extending equal rights to gay couples somehow infringes upon their own personal freedoms -- "you're being intolerant of our right to think gays are an abomination" isn't a particularly compelling argument -- right-wing media figures are now concocting elaborate scenarios in which their future rights will be infringed as a result of the DOMA ruling.
Fox News' Todd Starnes got the ball rolling yesterday, writing on Twitter that it "won't be long before they outlaw the Bible as hate speech," and asking: "How long before federal agents haul pastors out of the pulpit?" Conservative radio host Laura Ingraham wondered aloud whether Catholics in America will be "persona non grata."
According to Farah, the justices who struck down DOMA made "no real effort at making a constitutional case" against the legislation, instead relying on the argument "that anyone who opposes same-sex marriage does so for no other reason than bigotry against homosexuals."
From the June 26 edition of Courtside Entertainment Group's The Laura Ingraham Show:
Loading the player reg...
Fox News contributor Laura Ingraham has said that she will look into challenging Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) because of his support for comprehensive immigration reform, furthering her campaign of demanding that Republicans oppose the Senate immigration bill.
During her June 25 radio show, Ingraham cited Graham's policies on Syria and immigration reform to tell residents of South Carolina:
INGRAHAM: I don't care who you find -- oh, I do care who you find. We need a smart, savvy, Reagan conservative to run against Lindsey Graham in the 2014 election. He needs to be defeated, primaried, and we need to win that seat with a Reagan conservative who will not do this kind of nonsense. He needs to be punished, the liberal Republicans need to be punished, and they need to be thrown out of office at the first opportunity. I'll say that until I'm blue in the face.
Following a commercial break, Ingraham said she'd look into running against Graham herself, telling her audience "people think I'm joking, I'm actually not joking."
Ingraham's statements follow a history of threatening to challenge Republican senators and representatives if they support the Senate's comprehensive immigration reform bill. On May 22, Ingraham said that she is "thinking of moving to Arizona," saying she "will primary challenge Senator Jeff Flake myself if that's what this requires." And on June 7, she said that if comprehensive immigration reform passes in the House of Representatives, "I am going to make it my personal mission to support primaries for every Republican who supports it."
She has also repeatedly criticized Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) who is part of the so-called Gang of 8 that crafted the Senate's immigration bill. On April 17, she said the bill will be "the end of Marco Rubio's political career," and on May 15 she told Rubio to "walk away" from the immigration bill "before it's too late." Most recently on June 21, Ingraham finally declared that Rubio's presidential chances are "over" because of his support for immigration reform.
Ingraham's campaign against immigration reform doesn't just rest on threatening to unseat Republicans, however. She has also repeatedly smeared Latinos and read ads for the anti-immigration hate group Federation for American Immigration Reform on her radio show.
From the June 24 edition of Courtside Entertainment Group's The Laura Ingraham Show:
Loading the player reg...
From the June 21 edition of Fox News' The O'Reilly Factor:
Loading the player reg...
From the June 21 edition of Courtside Entertainment Group's The Laura Ingraham Show:
Loading the player reg...
Right-wing media outlets cherry-picked data from a Congressional Budget Office (CBO) report on the Senate's immigration reform proposal to incorrectly claim that the bill would hurt American workers. In fact, the CBO report found that the Senate immigration reform bill would have temporary and small negative effects but over the long term would greatly benefit both American workers and the economy, which is reinforced by past studies.
Fox News contributor Laura Ingraham endorsed the anti-immigrant hate group Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) on her radio show, following months of her campaign to kill the bipartisan effort for comprehensive immigration reform.
During a commercial break between segments on The Laura Ingraham Show on June 20, a recording played of Ingraham endorsing FAIR, claiming that immigration reform was "a declaration of war on American workers and taxpayers" and that FAIR fought "for true reform that puts the future of America first":
INGRAHAM: I want you to know there's an organization fighting to restore integrity to our immigration system and to make sure that your voice is heard. I'm talking about the Federation for American Immigration Reform, or FAIR. FAIR works for strong border security and enforcement to stop illegal immigration, and FAIR leads the fight to make sure that we don't just keep importing more and more foreign labor to replace American workers, who want and need jobs. Right now, special interests are giving us phony promises of enforcement, while they're working hard to make sure millions get amnesty. They don't care about the rule of law or the American worker, that's not their priority. Listen, amnesty is not immigration reform. It's a declaration of war on American workers and taxpayers. But you can help FAIR fight for true reform that puts the future of America first. Go to FAIRus.org. Let's retake control of the immigration debate. Get involved and make a difference at FAIRus.org.
The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) has designated FAIR as an anti-immigrant hate group, writing "FAIR leaders have ties to white supremacist groups and eugenicists and have made many racist statements. Its advertisements have been rejected because of racist content." FAIR has promoted people who made violent threats against immigrants, has known ties to the nativist leader John Tanton, and has received money from white supremacist groups. The group's founder and president Dan Stein also published an error-ridden piece for Politico in April urging Republicans to "walk away" from a deal on comprehensive immigration reform legislation.
Ingraham's on-air endorsement of FAIR follows months of her campaigning against the bipartisan effort to reform immigration policy. In March, while guest-hosting for host Bill O'Reilly on his Fox News show, Ingraham let FAIR spokesman Bob Dane deny that the anti-immigrant organization is a hate group while demonizing the Southern Poverty Law Center. She has hosted a nativist group director on her radio show to push debunked immigration myths, argued that a "two-tiered" class system for undocumented immigrants "sits better" with her than comprehensive reform, claimed that immigration reform will "destroy American sovereignty," and has promoted smears against Latinos. Ingraham has also promised to campaign against congressional Republicans who support comprehensive immigration reform.
Right-wing media outlets cherry-picked data from a Congressional Budget Office report on the Senate's immigration reform proposal to claim that immigrants who would benefit under the bill will drive down the wages of U.S. workers. In fact, while CBO predicts a slight decrease in wages in the first decade, that decrease would be outweighed by the larger increase in wages in the following decade. CBO also noted that its estimates "do not necessarily imply that current U.S. residents would be worse off" in the first decade.
A post on Breitbart.com asserted that CBO found that "illegal immigrants who would receive amnesty, or legalized status, would see a spike in their income while Americans' incomes dropped." The post added that "it would be harder for Americans to find jobs if the bill passed." Similarly, on her radio show, Fox News contributor Laura Ingraham aired comments by Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) claiming the bill would depress U.S. wages, then stated that the bill "goes beyond all common sense":
In reality, the CBO report on the economic impact of the Senate immigration bill states that "average wages for the entire labor force would be 0.1 percent lower in 2023 and 0.5 percent higher in 2033 under the legislation than under current law." CBO continues:
The estimated reductions in average wages and per capita GNP for much of the next two decades do not necessarily imply that current U.S. residents would be worse off, on average, under the legislation than they would be under current law. Both of those figures represent differences between the averages for all U.S. residents under the legislation--including both the people who would be residents under current law and the additional people who would come to the country under the legislation--and the averages under current law for people who would be residents in the absence of the legislation.
As noted, the additional people who would become residents under the legislation would earn lower wages, on average, than other residents, which would pull down the average wage and per capita GNP; at the same time, the income earned by capital would increase. [emphasis added]