NBC Applauds Texas Dems Subverting Democracy With Shameless Stunt


On Tuesday, NBC’s Today show hailed Texas Democrats fleeing the state in order to supposedly stop “a dangerous attack on democracy” posed by Republican-backed voting reform legislation. The network was so in the tank for the left-wing lawmakers that it failed to point out that they were subverting the very democracy they claimed to be protecting with the juvenile partisan stunt.

“Getting out of dodge. Dozens of Texas Democrats flee the state in an attempt to block a voting bill they claim is a dangerous attack on democracy,” co-host Hoda Kotb excitedly announced at the top of the show. She touted the group of cowardly politicians “Now holding out in the nation’s capitol, with the Governor of Texas saying they will be arrested if they return.”

 

 

In the report that followed minutes later, senior Washington correspondent Hallie Jackson giddily declared: “They’ve walked out before in May, but this is the farthest they’ve gone, literally and figuratively, putting a national spotlight on what they see as a dangerous attack on democracy.” The reporter then briefly noted “Their critics calling it a stunt.”

Trying to paint the state Democratic lawmakers as the heroes of the story, Jackson swooned:

Ditching their state overnight, potentially risking arrest when they get back, Texas state Democrats blocking Republican bills on voting rights with a walkout gone airborne….Arriving in Washington, more than 50 state lawmakers on a pair of private planes from Austin, their absence now preventing Texas Republicans from passing those voting bills, since they’d need two-thirds of the chamber present….With the dramatic departure, the Democrats hope to highlight their mission and put pressure on Congress to act.

Amid the glowing narration, a clip played of the shameless Democrats singing “We Shall Overcome.”

After a soundbite ran of Texas Democratic State Representative Chris Turner demanding Congress “pass strong federal voter protection legislation” immediately, Jackson lamented:

The U.S. Senate stalled on a sweeping plan that would protect voting rights. Republicans don’t support it and not enough Democrats want to change the Senate rules to pass it along party lines. But Texas Democrats are all but begging for backup.

Wrapping up the segment, she promoted how the White House was planning to respond: “Now, President Biden in Philadelphia today, planning to use the power of his bully pulpit in a speech focusing on voting rights.” Jackson teased some of the extreme rhetoric the President would be hurling during the address: “And NBC News has learned that the President in those remarks today will blast those new Republican-backed voting bills as the most egregious attempts to harm the integrity of our democracy since the Civil War, according to a White House source.”

Of course she worried that such vile, fact-free assertions wouldn’t be enough for the Democratic Party’s radical base: “But some on the left want the President to go even further in trying to rally Democrats around changing those rules here in the Senate, which would allow them to pass a voting rights bill even without GOP support.”

On Monday evening, NBC Nightly News actually managed to refrain from cheerleading for Texas Democrats, even as CBS Evening News and ABC’s World News Tonight were quick to pull out their poms-poms. Apparently Tuesday’s Today show was just trying to catch up.

Jackson’s willingness to parrot left-wing spin was brought to viewers by Citi and CarMax. You can fight back by letting these advertisers know what you think of them sponsoring such content.

Here is a full transcript of the July 13 segment:

7:01 AM ET TEASE

HODA KOTB: Getting out of dodge. Dozens of Texas Democrats flee the state in an attempt to block a voting bill they claim is a dangerous attack on democracy. Now holding out in the nation’s capitol, with the Governor of Texas saying they will be arrested if they return. What’s next in the standoff? We’re live with the very latest.     

7:11 AM ET SEGMENT

SAVANNAH GUTHRIE: And we turn now to those Texas Democrats waking up in Washington, D.C. this morning after fleeing the state in an effort to block a Republican-backed voting bill. NBC’s senior Washington correspondent Hallie Jackson’s got the very latest on that. Hi, Hallie, good morning.  

HALLIE JACKSON: Savannah, good morning. When the Texas legislature gavels in later today, all those state Democrats plan to be here in D.C. instead, more than 50 of them, potentially risking arrest if they go back. That’s why they plan to stay here for weeks, at least 25 more days, until that special session is over. They’ve walked out before in May, but this is the farthest they’ve gone, literally and figuratively, putting a national spotlight on what they see as a dangerous attack on democracy. Their critics calling it a stunt.

Ditching their state overnight, potentially risking arrest when they get back, Texas state Democrats blocking Republican bills on voting rights with a walkout gone airborne.

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN [TEXAS STATE DEMOCRATIC LAWMAKER]: We had no other option. And so, we took a stand.

JACKSON: Arriving in Washington…

[Texas state Democratic lawmakers singing “We Shall Overcome”]

JACKSON: …more than 50 state lawmakers on a pair of private planes from Austin, their absence now preventing Texas Republicans from passing those voting bills, since they’d need two-thirds of the chamber present. Critics say the Texas bills would make it harder for minority voters by adding new identification requirements for mail-in voting, banning some early voting options like 24-hour and drive-through voting, and creating new criminal penalties for breaking election code. With the dramatic departure, the Democrats hope to highlight their mission and put pressure on Congress to act.

CHRIS TURNER [STATE REP., D-TX]: You must pass strong federal voter protection legislation and you must do it now. You must do it before the August recess.

JACKSON: The U.S. Senate stalled on a sweeping plan that would protect voting rights. Republicans don’t support it and not enough Democrats want to change the Senate rules to pass it along party lines. But Texas Democrats are all but begging for backup. Texas Republicans slamming the walkout as a stunt, arguing Democrats are abandoning their responsibilities.  

SEN. JOHN CORNYN [R-TX]: Well, I would say it’s a very un-Texan thing to do, to cut and run in the face of a fight.

JACKSON: Overnight, the state’s Republican governor suggesting the walkout simply delays the inevitable.

GOV. GREG ABBOTT [R-TX]: Once they step back into the state of Texas, they will be arrested and brought to the Texas capitol and we will be conducting business.

JACKSON: Nationally, more than a dozen states, including Florida, Georgia and Iowa, have put similar voting restrictions in place with bills in progress in many other places. Now, President Biden in Philadelphia today, planning to use the power of his bully pulpit in a speech focusing on voting rights.

And NBC News has learned that the President in those remarks today will blast those new Republican-backed voting bills as the most egregious attempts to harm the integrity of our democracy since the Civil War, according to a White House source. But some on the left want the President to go even further in trying to rally Democrats around changing those rules here in the Senate, which would allow them to pass a voting rights bill even without GOP support. Savannah?

GUTHRIE: Alright, Hallie, thank you.



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