February 22nd, 2009
01:00 PM ET
11 years ago

Media critic blasts Chris Matthews' 'man crush' on Obama


Goldberg takes issue with media coverage of President Obama.

(CNN) - It has become one of MSNBC host Chris Matthew's most infamous lines of the 2008 presidential election:

"I felt this thrill going up my leg," Matthews said the night Obama resoundingly defeated rival Hillary Clinton in the Virginia and Maryland Democratic primaries.

And former CBS News Correspondent Bernard Goldberg, who has long alleged liberal bias in the media, highlighted that line as indicative of the media's "slobbering" press coverage of candidate Obama during his campaign for the White House.

"That's not commentary, that's a man-crush," Goldberg declared on CNN's Reliable Sources Sunday.

Goldberg, the author of the new book “A Slobbering Love Affair,” credits the media coverage of the 2008 presidential election for ultimately resulting in Barack Obama's victory.

He specifically faulted coverage of the prolonged Democratic primary campaign, during which two historic candidates contentiously squared off.

"I think in elite liberal circles, certainly inside the media, race trumps gender, and that's why they slobbered over Barack Obama, and took Hillary Clinton to the back room and beat her with a rubber hose,” Goldberg said.

Goldberg also faulted political journalists for not digging up controversial sermons of the president's longtime pastor, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, until Obama had already effectively captured his party's nomination.

"These tapes were available, you didn't have to be Woodward or Bernstein to dig them up," Goldberg said. "If those tapes had come out six months earlier, certainly a year earlier, I don't think Barack Obama would have been the nominee.

"I think Hillary Clinton would have been. And I think she would have been the president today," he continued. "And in that sense, she's the biggest loser in all of this."

soundoff (607 Responses)
  1. Stef

    Sorry to say but my husband and I have lots of friends from around the world. (South American, England, Japan, Poland,France, Canada, Germany)......and the whole world is in love with Obama. Face the facts....as Terrence McKenna said "Our world is in danger from the lack of new ideas, our world is in crisis because of the lack of consciousness"....Obama represented to us, new ideas and an intelligent person with a conscious. My favorite thing to do these days is listen to Sean Hannity while in the car line up waiting for me kids to get out of school. His whole trip these days is...."Look at the state of the economy, thanks Obama for being in office only a few days and really screwing things up".....and "Obama is a fear-monger, listen how he is trying to convince us that our economy is in crisis and needs some sort of help." Sorry to say Hannity......most American's understand that Obama did not screw up our country. Most Americans are smart enought to understand the economy was in the tank before Obama took office. Most Americans are tired of the whole hate trip, like Larry the fellow that posted below. We are sick and tired of mean and ugly and war and hate. I'm praying for Obama's success and a speedy recovery to an ecomomic downturn brought on in part by folks living on credit. The "credit" monster finally reared it's ugly head and said to everyone, "it's time to pay the piper" We will get through this.

    February 22, 2009 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  2. andrew

    i love how he comments on things that President Obama's pastor said in sermons. thats the biggest BS ever. just because the pastor says something, doesnt meant the entire congregation follows blindly and believes 100% of what is said. or maybe goldberg does and thinks all religions must be cults following the pastor's word alone. what an idiot.

    February 22, 2009 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  3. daniel cabrera

    Well, everyone should expecy this type of behavior by pseudo-journalists from the TV tabloids MSNBC and CNN. You see ,it is possible that they will even take or eat anything, I mean, ABSOLUTELY ANYTHING coming from Obama, 'THE MAGIC ONE' ,....I am wrong on this one?

    Daniel Cabrera
    Merillville, Indiana

    February 22, 2009 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  4. Niko the Farmer

    When a Democrat wins, they say voters were swayed by "liberal media". When a Republican wins, they say the voters are "smart." Isn't there an institution in which to house these two-sided freaks?

    February 22, 2009 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  5. jr

    The entire media have this love/hate relationship with President Obama...

    CNN can't get enough of him because of the ratings he draw..

    MSN loves on him..and hates..depending on who is sitting at the desk...

    FOX thinks he is the devil, terrorist, socialist., nazi..and all things evil above...

    There are only a few select journalist who are totaling unbiased...

    February 22, 2009 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  6. Margaret, Canada

    Hello America: Don't you think it's about time you ALL got behind your President? He might be right, he might be wrong, but, after 4 weeks who knows where things will be in 4 years. You cannot judge him right now. It's sad to see the deviceness I read every day on the different newspapers and CNN, the Huffington Post etc., yes, we in Canada do like to know what is going on in the States.

    You are a GREAT Country, but you are tearing yourself apart with this in fighting, between the left and the right. You are One Country, either you get together to some degree or there will only be a North & South, East & West and not the United States.

    February 22, 2009 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  7. Meghan

    I've noticed even headlines on these news sites are slightly biased . For example there was one, "Obama Does Not Read Entire Stimulus Bill-But That's Not Uncommon". Seems like that whole headline is a loaded gun-drop the "but that's not uncommon" and it could seem like an attack. Add it, it seems like the media is covering for him. The headline could have been "Top legal experts debrief Obama on stimulus plan", something totally informative and neutral, where we could form our own opinions on it. It honestly seemed like they had to report it because of Obama's promises to read budget plans "line by line" and didn't, but they were quick to explain that it's common.

    February 22, 2009 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  8. sherey

    Learn to live with it!! Those who are newsworthy will always capture the attention of the media. President Obama is fascinating because of his capabilities in wanting to move the country forward....and not be stuck in the same old, same old as, perhaps, Clinton might have been.

    February 22, 2009 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  9. flipp

    I can not believe all these stupid libs... posting crap on here.........
    Just want to draw a link if they can understand it.... the left wing people. Are like unto the people on the left hand of God. And the right wingers on the right hand... your days are numbered-

    February 22, 2009 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  10. Darrel B

    Nina D:

    "Even if Obama had won because of media influence, at least his victory was legal, unlike Bush's 2000 victory when Cheney rigged Florida's ballots to get Bush the winning votes."

    Would you care to provide some specific evidence for this outrageous claim? Or does simply repeating a lie over and over make it true? Apparently it does in your mind.

    These nonsensical accusations are getting really, really old.

    February 22, 2009 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  11. chris

    Slobbering love affair for Obama, Goldberg? Lets try this on for size:

    "I'm sure I'm not the only male in America who, when Palin dropped her first wink, sat up a little straighter on the couch and said, "Hey, I think she just winked at me." And her smile. By the end, when she clearly knew she was doing well, it was so sparkling it was almost mesmerizing. It sent little starbursts through the screen and ricocheting around"

    Please, Mr. Goldberg – there's no shortage of slobber. At least Matthews didn't have to "sit up a little straighter" on his couch.

    February 22, 2009 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  12. ReMark

    It wasn't the media that elected Obama, it was a Dick Cheney/Karl Rove plot to nominate the Democratic candidate least likely to win. They never believed a black man could win the presidency and here they are - hung out to dry on their own bigotry.

    P.S. I made this up. But it is a better rumor than other people are writing.

    P.P.S. It is the reasons so many White House emails disappeared. They cam from White House staff giving insturctions to voters in Iowa and New Hampshire to start the ball rolling.

    P.P.P. S. I amde this up.

    February 22, 2009 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  13. skeptic

    I quit watching Chris Matthews years ago.

    He's always looking at himself in the monitor (watch that closely, viewers), obviously very much in love with himself and the fact that he's laughing all the way to bank with NBC paying him a ridiculous salary.

    He rarely lets others express their point of view, unless it's someone like Erin Burnett, then he oogles her like O'Reilly fawns over the blond bimbo brigade that IS Fox News.

    NBC would do its viewers a favor by ridding itself of Chris Matthews!

    February 22, 2009 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  14. Steven

    It's about time someone pointed this out. What I think is odd is the way everyone is gushing over Obama and he 's only been in office one month. I recognize the historic milestone we've reached and the initiatives he's proposing sure sound good, but's let's get the hype and sensationalism out of the media and see what this man can truly DO. Again, I'm rootin' for him. However talk is cheap and I want to see what he actually accomplishes.

    February 22, 2009 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  15. Girth

    The question Mr. Goldberg needs to answer is this: If the press is liberal, how is it that prior to the last election this country has had a Republican president during 20 of the last 28 years and a Republican-controlled Congress during 12 of the last 14 years? Either the press has zero influence on elections, or it has a conservative bias.

    You need to face the fact that the media did not elect a Democrat in 2008. It instead was the utter and complete failure of the Republicans to govern this country in a responsible way when they had total control of the government from Jan. 2001 to Jan. 2007 that helped elect Obama.

    February 22, 2009 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  16. arithmetic is liberal

    Just remember this little tidbit:

    These very same people who use the label "liberal media" as a slur had another even worse slur for the media before 1965: the Jew media.

    So just remember that, along with other slurs like "coastal" or "New Yorker", it's all just their masking terminology for being anti-Semetic.

    February 22, 2009 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  17. JohnC

    I wonder if Goldberg was equally critical of conservatives when they announced that they were seeing "starbursts" when Sarah Palin walked on stage?

    My guess is probably not. Because only liberals are offenders in Goldberg's slanted world.

    February 22, 2009 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  18. Jay

    This guy is just upset because Clinton wasn't the nominee so he and his cronies at Foxnews couldn't rally the conservative base and get McCain elected.

    Hey Foxnews....your candidate lost his bid for the Presidency...get over it.

    February 22, 2009 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  19. Paul

    Gotta call you out Pal - you're just flat our wrong/lying. Sarah Palin did claim in several interviews, including with katie couric, that she understood national defense issues because you from some parts of Alaska you can see Russia.

    And for the record, Al Gore never said he invented the Internet - that was from an RNC news release.

    February 22, 2009 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  20. illegal

    funny GOP"s now they want to divide the USA with nonsensical comments and writings.I hope and pray people will notice how funny they are and realize that we need to work together or else these lovely country will go down.What did they{the GOP} do for the country the last 8 years.Sad.

    February 22, 2009 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  21. Simmy


    "Obama did not win by a 'landslide'", .........Actually, dear sir, McCain lost by a 'landslide.' Perception is the name of your game right?
    The only people who give Goldberg's statements credence are his clones: Hannity-ites, the Coutler-geist crew, McConnell, Boehner, Cantor, Rapper Steele. We are adjusting to this 21st century, slowing but surely. Republicans are self-destructing with the multi-style leadership they've embraced. The various talking heads; Steele, Limbaugh, McConnell, Boehner, Drudge, McCain, Palin, Blackwell, Bach, etc., are making their party not only sound foolish, but look like a party of clowns. Intervention is seriouly needed – if it's not too late.

    The days of one-dimensional thinking are over. It's time to embrace America as the true melting pot that it is. All people are equal. They are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights.... It's no longer your way, McConnell and friends, or the highway. If this ship sinks, there will be no survivors. Peace to Israel.

    February 22, 2009 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  22. Vee

    Everyone knows MSNBC takes a liberal approach to news and Fox News takes a conservative approach. There are multiple liberal AND conservative news sources. People choose which outlets to watch, read, (and believe) based on their individual political affiliations. The "liberal media" didn't win the election for Obama, more people just chose to get their info from liberal sources. If they didn't like the info they were getting, they had other options. It's not like there is a monopoly on journalism!

    February 22, 2009 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  23. Chris

    Who cares what book pusher Bernard Goldberg has to say. He is an angry, misguided O'Reilly lovin', liberal bashing, nutjob who has gotten more and more extreme or perhaps senile. "Battleships vs. flies" is how he decribed the battle for the future of this nation on The O'Leilly Factor. "Bring it on" he says – blah, blah, blah – you lost Bernie. Be a patriot and shut yer yap you drooling old windbag. See you in the well represented book bargain bin with Trace Adkins, Sean Hannity and all the other right wing nit wits who are shocked that Obama cant fix in 6 weeks what Bush and his buddies screwed up for 8 years

    February 22, 2009 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  24. Mark Lodes

    Leave Chris Matthews alone. The guy felt what everyone who listens to Obama felt: INSPIRED. Get over it you limey Republicans. Throwing the kitchen sink at the guy who's news channel reported the truth during the election is not the way to win over the public.

    February 22, 2009 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  25. dejah

    Where were all you complainers about the media when the media was swallowing everything the GOP and Bush said, hook line and sinker?

    The media should NOT be playing favorites for either side. The myth of the liberal media is just that - put forth by a bunch of liars who have bought the media and told it what to print - and the past 8 to 10 years we've seen a media slurp up GOP propaganda. Then, when we see a story complimentary to a more liberal point of view than the Genghis Khan GOP would like us to see, they screech and yell about "Liberal media!" Today there is NO balance in the media. It's all tilted toward right-wing bilge-sprayers. And the media practitioners just lap it up like momma's milk and claim it;s good.

    This story is a very good example of it. Most people are NOT buying what the ugly GOP has to sell, so the right-wingers have nothing to cry about now... but yet they continue to screech like 20year-olds with wet diapers about how unfaaaiirrrr it all is.

    Go away GOPers and wingers - let the rest of america heal in peace. We've had enough of your crap.

    February 22, 2009 05:03 pm at 5:03 pm |
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