Posted on | July 8, 2014 | 25 Comments
This morning I woke up early and switched the TV onto MSNBC — I Watch MSNBC So You Don’t Have To™ — where the Morning Joe crew then proceeded to spend 10 minutes talking about New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie. You probably missed the minor bit of local news that was the “hook” for this otherwise pointless discussion:
Gov. Chris Christie said [Monday] that he declined to meet with parents of first graders who were killed in the 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting last week because he had already decided to veto the controversial gun bill.
Christie defended his decision to recently veto the bill to reduce the permitted size of ammunition magazines from 15 rounds to 10 and said he declined to discuss the bill with parents of slain children because the conditional veto was already signed by the time they requested a meeting. . . .
The comments from the potential Republican presidential contender in 2016 came less than a week after two of the parents — Nicole Hockley and Mark Barden — visited Christie’s office in Trenton last week to present more than 55,000 petitions supporting the bill to limit the size of magazines.
The parents contended that more lives would have been saved during the mass shooting — 20 children and six adults were slain at the school in Newtown, Conn. — if the gunman had taken more time to reload his weapon.
After the parents left the New Jersey Statehouse, Christie’s office released the conditional veto, which was received with harsh criticism by the Democrat-controlled Legislature.
The parents sharply criticized Christie’s refusal to meet as “a cowardly political move.”
And that’s really all there was to it: Basically, the Newtown shooting is being exploited on a national basis to promote new laws infringing the rights of gun owners, with the parents being enlisted as celebrity spokespeople, flown around the country to show up and issue public statements denouncing Republicans who oppose this Bloomberg-funded left-wing anti-Second Amendment agenda.
Except this isn’t what Morning Joe viewers were told. Instead, Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinksi treated this transparent publicity stunt by the gun-control lobby as if it were legitimate news story of national consequence, as if this New Jersey legislation would have made any significant impact on violent crime, and as if Christie’s veto of the bill were evidence of politically motivated intransigence. Such a presentation is absurdly false.
As noted, New Jersey already has a law that limits magazine size to 15 rounds, making it one of the most restrictive states in the country, and the speculative value of further restricting magazine capacity is negligible. What percentage of homicides, attempted homicides or aggravated assault cases in New Jersey involve firearms with high-capacity magazines? Unless you can show that magazine capacity has some meaningful correlation to crime, discussion of new restrictions is just political posturing, and the people at MSNBC should be ashamed of themselves for wasting their viewers’ time on this idiocy. Here are the cable news ratings for July 1:
Fox & Friends ………….. 1,040,000 (56%)
MSNBC Morning Joe ……. 288,000 (15%)
CNN New Day …………….. 266,000 (14%)
HLN Morning Express …. 170,000 (9%)
CNBC Squawk Box …………. 99,000 (5%)
So, out of a combined cable news audience of 1.9 million for the morning shows, Fox & Friends gets more than half, while fewer than 1-in-6 watch Morning Joe, which barely outpaces CNN’s anemic ratings. Morning Joe is a failure in the ratings because its producers have made a choice: Rather than reporting and discussing actual news, their program is instead devoted to promoting the narrow partisan agenda — gun control, “climate change,” abortion, gay rights, etc. — of the Democrat Party.
But what else can we expect from a network that wastes valuable airtime on the notorious idiot Chris Matthews?