Nets Cheer Obama (Finally) Endorsing Biden

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Their excitement could not be hidden. During Tuesday’s evening newscasts, the broadcast networks were able to take a break from the coronavirus crisis and celebrate the edicts of their long lost heartthrob: former President Barack Obama. With no one else able to contend for the Democratic nomination, Obama finally threw his support behind his former vice president, Joe Biden. ABC, CBS, and NBC all used the opportunity tout Biden as the supposedly better leader to handle the crisis.

Even though ABC’s World News Tonightspent less than a minute on the story, that didn’t stop them from gushing. “We’re also following the major headline back here at home in the race for 2020, tonight. Former President Barack Obama endorsing Joe Biden in this dark time,” anchor David Muir announced.

Following a soundbite from Obama’s endorsement video, congressional correspondent Mary Bruce proclaimed “this is a really big deal” and fawned about a newly released photo (above) of Biden and Obama. Bruce concluded by touting how Obama had been “working the phones. Now eager to try to unite the Democratic Party going forward.” The excitement in her voice was unmistakable.

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Speaking about the “unmistakable,” NBC White House correspondent Peter Alexander used his Nightly News report to team up with Obama to laud Biden as supposedly the better commander-in-chief compared to Trump, and bash Republicans. Alexander spoke as if it was a matter of fact:

 

 

ALEXANDER: The former president casting his close friend as the right person to lead the country through the coronavirus crisis.

OBAMA: Joe helped me manage H1N1. And prevent the Ebola epidemic to become the pandemic we’re seeing now.

ALEXANDER: The contrast of the current commander-in-chief, unmistakable.

OBAMA: The Republicans occupying the White House and running the U.S. Senate are not interested in progress. They’re interested in power.

Via correspondent Ed O’Keefe, the CBS Evening News was also devoted to using Obama as guidance to hawk Biden’s qualifications. “Former President Barack Obama rejoined the campaign fray today, virtually, from his Washington home. He cited Joe Biden’s work on past global epidemics and the 2008 economic recovery as reasons why the former Vice President is ready for the White House,” O’Keefe said.

He also touted the same anti-Republican quote Alexander did. “The 12-minute video included criticism of President Trump, without naming him, and congressional Republicans,” he said.

And like Bruce, O’Keefe boasted about the “behind the scenes” work Obama was doing to “unify” the Democratic Party on Biden’s behalf. “Today, he also sent fundraising e-mails and texts for Joe Biden and says he’ll be back out on the campaign trail as soon as he can,” he swooned.

Meanwhile, none of them have dared to report on the recent sexual assault allegations made against Biden.

The transcripts are below, click “expand” to read:

ABC’s World News Tonight
April 14, 2020
6:46:31 p.m. Eastern

DAVID MUIR: We’re also following the major headline back here at home in the race for 2020, tonight. Former President Barack Obama endorsing Joe Biden in this dark time, he said.

BARACK OBAMA: Joe has the character and experience to guide us through one of our darkest times and heal us through a long recovery.

MUIR: So, let’s get to Mary Bruce, with us live tonight from Washington. And the former vice president, Joe Biden has said all along, Mary, that he’s wanted to earn the nomination on his own, without the former President’s formal help. But I gather this endorsement is very welcomed tonight.

MARY BRUCE: Yeah, David, this is a really big deal and Joe Biden knows that. Today, he thanked his friend, calling him “Barack” and posting this picture of the two of them together, saying, “Let’s do this.” Now, Obama has been largely silent throughout the race. Clearly, waiting for this process to play out, but behind the scenes, David, we know he’s been working the phones. Now eager to try to unite the Democratic Party going forward. David.

MUIR: All right Mary Bruce, tonight. Mary, thank you.

 

CBS Evening News
April 14, 2020
6:41:57 p.m. Eastern

NORAH O’DONNELL: Today, Barack Obama formally endorsed Joe Biden for president. In ending his public silence on the race, the former President has a clear goal heading into the fall: party unity among Democrats. Ed O’Keefe reports tonight.

[Cuts to video]

BARACK OBAMA: Hi, everybody.

ED O’KEEFE: Former President Barack Obama rejoined the campaign fray today, virtually, from his Washington home. He cited Joe Biden’s work on past global epidemics and the 2008 economic recovery as reasons why the former Vice President is ready for the White House.

OBAMA: I know he’ll surround himself with good– experts, scientists, military officials– who actually know how to run the government and care about doing a good job running the government.

O’KEEFE: The 12-minute video included criticism of President Trump, without naming him, and congressional Republicans.

OBAMA: Republicans occupying the White House and run the U.S. Senate are not interested in progress. They’re interested in power.

O’KEEFE: The endorsement comes one day after Senator Bernie Sanders also pledged his support to Biden.

SEN. BERNIE SANDERS (I-VT): It’s imperative that all of us work together.

O’KEEFE: The former Vice President has put his friendship with Mr. Obama at the center of his White House bid.

JOE BIDEN: The most successful president in any of our lifetimes, Barack Obama.

O’KEEFE: It’s led to disagreements with liberal Democrat overs health care and immigration, but increasingly, all signs now point towards party unity.

[Cuts back to live]

Barack Obama has mostly avoided speaking out publicly about the campaign until today. And, otherwise, he spent the last several months work the phones behind the scenes, hoping to unify his party ahead of November’s election. Today, he also sent fund-raising emails and texts for Joe Biden and says he’ll be back out on the campaign trail as soon as he can. Norah.

O’DONNELL: All right, Ed, thank you.

 

NBC Nightly News
April 14, 2020
7:11:21 p.m. Eastern

LESTER HOLT: Tonight, former President Barack Obama breaking his silence and endorsing his former vice president, Joe Biden, saying he has all the qualities we need in a president right now. Peter Alexander has more.

[Cuts to video]

PETER ALEXANDER: President Obama, after sitting out the Democratic primary campaign, tonight breaking his silence.

BARACK OBAMA: I’m so proud to endorse Joe Biden for president of the United States. Choosing Joe to be my vice president was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.

ALEXANDER: The former President casting his close friend as the right person to lead the country through the coronavirus crisis.

OBAMA: Joe helped me manage H1N1. And prevent the Ebola epidemic to become the pandemic we’re seeing now.

ALEXANDER: The contrast of the current commander-in-chief, unmistakable.

OBAMA: The Republicans occupying the White House and running the U.S. Senate are not interested in progress. They’re interested in power.

ALEXANDER: It comes a day after Biden won Bernie Sanders’ backing. Sanders tonight, telling the AP, it would be “irresponsible” for his loyalists not to support Biden.

But the former Vice President still faces a challenge drawing young people and progressives; a vulnerability his allies hope former President Obama can help address.

OBAMA: We have to look to the future. Bernie understands that. And Joe understands that.

ALEXANDER: Biden’s regularly touted their relationship.

JOE BIDEN: I stand with Barack Obama all eight years, good, bad, and indifferent. That’s where I stand.

ALEXANDER: The President’s re-election campaign dismissing the endorsement, saying “Obama has no other choice but to support Biden.” “President Trump will destroy him.” Biden now hoping Obama’s popularity, that has not always translated to votes for others, will benefit him this fall. Peter Alexander, NBC News, the White House.

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