Nets Hype Bloated Trillions in Spending, But a Scant 16 Seconds on ‘Inflation’


Joe Biden signed the massive, bloated infrastructure bill into law on Monday. So you would think that the networks on Tuesday would talk about inflation and the impact yet more spending will have on skyrocketing prices, right? Well, no.

NBC allowed a scant 16 seconds on inflation and ABC just eight seconds. CBS never mentioned inflation while discussing Biden celebrating the passage of the legislation. The grand total on Tuesday morning? 24 seconds. 

On NBC’s Today, Kristen Welker managed just six seconds to the actual topic of inflation. After noting that Biden wants more spending, she added, “It would pump trillions into the economy at a time when inflation is at a record high.” In a separate segment on gas prices, reporter Jo Ling Kent quickly noted this for ten seconds: “And the pain at the pump comes on top of historically high prices facing consumers across the country, from groceries to clothes to toys as inflation hits levels not seen in decades.” 

 

 

Over on Good Morning America, inflation never came up during a segment on the infrastructure legislation. It wasn’t until a story on Black Friday deals that reporter Rebecca Jarvis reminded cash-strapped Americans (for eight seconds): “Keep in mind with price inflation and those supply squeezes, hitting many areas the discounts this year may not be as deep as in years past.” 

During the actual discussion of infrastructure, co-host George Stephanopoulos wondered, “President Biden signs his trillion dollar infrastructure bill into law…. When will it get better for Americans?” 

Correspondent Cecilia Vega offered the bad news answer for viewers: Not soon: 

[The White House says] this plan isn’t meant to be like the short-term stimulus plans that we’ve seen in the past that we are talking about a long game here and you know this, many of these projects, Robin, like clean water and widespread internet access, that’s going to take a long time for communities to see. 

Over on CBS Mornings, co-host Tony Dokoupil tried to find some examples of an immediate benefit: 

President Biden is heading to New England this morning, hoping to show how a more than a trillion dollar infrastructure package will help one small town in particular. The President signed that bill into law yesterday at a White House ceremony. 

But the show’s journalists, during the entire two hour show, never said the word “inflation.”  On Monday, the dam broke on Biden’s low polling as all the journalists covered it. But clearly, on issues like inflation, the networks are still doing their best to protect the Democratic president. 

The burying of skyrocketing inflation on the networks was sponsored on CBS by Progressive, on ABC by Popeyes, on NBC by Hyundai. Click on the links to let them know what you think. 

Partial transcripts are below. Click “expand” to read more. 

Today

11/16/2021
7:12

KRISTEN WELKER: Earlier the President took a victory lap on his domestic agenda, signing the $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill into law. The nation’s largest investment in infrastructure in a generation.

WELKER: It comes as the second part of the President’s agenda, the $1.75 trillion domestic spending plan is facing an uphill battle in the Senate where centrist Democrats Kyrsten Sinema and Joe Manchin have raised questions about its price tag. It would pump trillions into the economy at a time when inflation is at a record high.

JO LING KENT: And the pain at the pump comes on top of historically high prices facing consumers across the country, from groceries to clothes to toys as inflation hits levels not seen in decades. 

        
CBS Morning
11/16/2021
7:05

TONY DOKOUPIL: President Biden is heading to New England this morning, hoping to show how a more than a trillion dollar infrastructure package will help one small town in particular. The President signed that bill into law yesterday at a White House ceremony. 

ED O’KEEFE: On Monday, Biden said the U.S. will be even more competitive with China, thanks the passage of the bipartisan  infrastructure bill. 

JOE BIDEN: Because of this law, next year will be the first year in 20 years, American 
investment in infrastructure will grow faster than China’s.

Good Morning America
11/16/2021

7AM tease

GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS: President Biden signs his trillion dollar infrastructure bill into law.

JOE BIDEN: America’s moving again and your life is going to change for the better.

STEPHANOPOULOS: When will it get better for Americans? 

ROBIN ROBERTS: Back here at home president Biden signing that bipartisan $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill saying the message is America is moving again. Let’s go to our chief White House correspondent Cecilia Vega. Cecilia, when will communities start to see the impact of the bill that was just signed?

CECILIA VEGA: Hi, Robin. That is the big question. Officials say some money will go out to ports and airports and roads to start projects.  

VEGA: The strategy for him to get out there and convince Americans they will benefit directly from this new law. Now, you asked that question, Robin. I pushed the White House. “When are Americans going to see the impact of this?” They say this plan isn’t meant to be like the short-term stimulus plans that we’ve seen in the past that we are talking about a long game here and you know this, many of these projects, Robin, like clean water and widespread internet access, that’s going to take a long time for communities to see. 
    
8:17
REBECCA JARVIS: Keep in mind with price inflation and those supply squeezes, hitting many areas the discounts this year may not be as deep as in years past.  



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