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McConnell warns of attempts by Obama, Media Matters to silence critics
Daily Caller ^ | 6/17/2012 | Vince Coglianese

Posted on 06/17/2012 1:51:44 PM PDT by Republican Wildcat

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell called out the White House Friday for maintaining a long-standing relationship with Media Matters for America, despite the liberal group’s attempts at “driving [conservative] voices clear out of the public square.”

“It’s hard to imagine a more broadly-accepted proposition than the fact that Americans are free, above all else, to speak their minds openly and freely without fear of punishment or reprisal from government authorities,” McConnell said in a speech at the American Enterprise Institute. “Human nature being what it is, however, I think we would all have to admit that there will always be a temptation, particularly among those in power, to muffle one’s critics.”

During the speech, entitled “Growing Threats to Our First Amendment Rights,” McConnell emphasized what he views as a continuing effort by the Obama administration and its surrogates, like Media Matters, to “muffle” free speech by exposing “critics to harassment and intimidation, either by government authorities or third party allies, and that should concern every one of us.”

“The attacks on speech are legion,” said McConnell, placing special emphasis on efforts by Democrats to turn back political speech protections afforded by the Supreme Court’s decision in the infamous Citizens United case.

“President Obama has publicly accused the Kochs of being part of a, quote, ‘corporate takeover of our democracy,’ whatever that means,” McConnell reminded his audience, referring to conservative billionaires Charles and David Koch, “and not only did his campaign publish a list of eight private citizens it regards as ‘enemies’ — an actual old school enemies list — it recently doubled down on the effort when some began to call these thuggish tactics into question.”

The Kentucky Republican noted that President Obama must not oppose efforts to silence conservative critics, because he has never condemned intimidation tactics aimed at his opponents, ranging from targeting businesses that support conservatives to the illegal tactic of “SWAT-ing” — whereby conservative writers have been harassed using 911 services to claim murders in the homes of targeted individuals.

And that should come as no surprise, McConnell explained, when the president has allied himself with the very groups that specialize in intimidating critics of the government. Ads by Google

“The tactics I’m describing extend well beyond the [Obama] campaign headquarters in Chicago. To an extent not seen since the Nixon administration, they extend deep into the administration itself,” McConnell warned.

“News reports suggest that top White House officials have long participated in a weekly conference call with a left-wing organization in Washington whose stated purpose is to track conservative media voices, seize on potentially offensive content and then use it to mount corporate intimidation campaigns aimed at driving these voices clear out of the public square,” said McConnell referring to the liberal messaging group, Media Matters for America.

As reported by The Daily Caller, Media Matters has indeed participated in a weekly strategy call with the White House and the far-left Center for American Progress during most of President Obama’s time in office. It is unknown if those conference calls continue to this day.

What is known is that Media Matters has been credited both internally and by other liberal groups with organizing campaigns aimed at silencing such media voices as Lou Dobbs, Glenn Beck, Don Imus and most recently, Rush Limbaugh.

That effort, to have Limbaugh forced out of his number-one rated radio show, has since gone dormant after failing to scare enough advertisers away from the program. The group mounted its campaign against Limbaugh after the talker came down on liberal activist Sandra Fluke for testifying before Congress that college students should be entitled to taxpayer-funded contraception. Limbaugh used an analogy he later apologized for: “It makes her a prostitute. She wants to be paid to have sex.”

To McConnell’s point, despite regular contact with Media Matters, the White House made no effort to head off the groups’ attempts to silence Limbaugh. Instead, the president joined them in condemning Rush and even called the 30-year-old Fluke to console her.

And Media Matters’ support of President Obama continues to grow. TheDC reported last week that the tax-exempt group has published defenses of the president at a vastly higher rate as Obama undertakes his 2012 re-election campaign than it did in 2011.

McConnell told the audience Friday that any effort by the government in unison with its third party allies to intimidate or silence critics flies in the face of the First Amendment.

“Lets be very clear,” said McConnell, “No individual or group in this country should have to face harassment or intimidation or incur crippling expenses defending themselves against their own government simply because that government doesn’t like the message that they’re advocating.”

Read more:

TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: mediamatters; obama

1 posted on 06/17/2012 1:51:55 PM PDT by Republican Wildcat
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To: Republican Wildcat

Barry’s Meateaters Matter will play hell silencing me. I’m an American and this is still America.

2 posted on 06/17/2012 1:53:52 PM PDT by FlingWingFlyer (Free Stuff or Freedom! You Decide 2012.)
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To: FlingWingFlyer

We’re under a Dictatorship. Plain as that.

3 posted on 06/17/2012 1:59:40 PM PDT by GeorgeWashingtonsGhost
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To: FlingWingFlyer

Fecal Matters.

4 posted on 06/17/2012 1:59:40 PM PDT by cripplecreek (What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world but loses his soul?)
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To: Republican Wildcat

Chicago thugs running the White House...and Americans voted for this when they elected Mister Hope and Change in 2008. I hope they won’t be fooled again in November but I’m worried. The media is still quite powerful and persuasive.

5 posted on 06/17/2012 2:07:11 PM PDT by Jim Scott
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To: Republican Wildcat

I was hoping McConnell would announce he was enrolling in an accelerated cojone growing class. What a wimp!

6 posted on 06/17/2012 2:26:37 PM PDT by upchuck (Need is not an acceptable lifestyle choice; dependent is not a career. ~ Dr. Tim Nerenz)
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To: upchuck

For McConnell that was actually pretty ballsey...

He named names called out the Kenyan by name...

7 posted on 06/17/2012 2:32:26 PM PDT by Popman (When you elect a clown: expect a circus...)
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To: FlingWingFlyer

First step, win the presidency and the senate.
Second step, take away Media Matters tax exempt status.
Final step, follow the money and bring that person(s) up on sedition.

If the media wants to protect these treasonous b@st@*ds,, take away their press credentials.

8 posted on 06/17/2012 2:37:52 PM PDT by EQAndyBuzz (ABO 2012)
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To: Popman

Mitch has always been a 1st Amendment advocate.

I remember him opposing legislation that would have banned flag-burning. He’s consistent, at least in this area.

9 posted on 06/17/2012 2:43:54 PM PDT by Bratch
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To: EQAndyBuzz

Hmm ~ sedition. We haven’t done that in centuries.

10 posted on 06/17/2012 2:44:22 PM PDT by muawiyah
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To: cripplecreek

“Fecal Matters.”

Defecating Democrat Style

11 posted on 06/17/2012 2:57:00 PM PDT by Bullfrogg (American by birth, Irish by heritage, and hellraiser by choice)
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To: Bratch

Mitch is consistent on more matters than people think.

12 posted on 06/17/2012 3:01:08 PM PDT by what's up
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To: Republican Wildcat
The 1st Amendment recognizes the right to free speech in a free society.

The 2nd Amendment gives it force and protection.

Those that try to silence the 1st must be willing to face the consequences of the 2nd.

13 posted on 06/17/2012 3:03:17 PM PDT by Wizdum (My job is to get you to shoot soda out your nose)
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To: Republican Wildcat

Just imagine the howling we would have heard had this been the Bush administration using intimidation tactics such as these.

Liberal democrats are so convinced that they’re always right about everything, that anything goes to accomplish their end goals. They’re driven by greed and hatred. Both of which are evil.

14 posted on 06/17/2012 3:07:36 PM PDT by Bullish
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To: FlingWingFlyer
If we tried to do what Media Matters does - but tried to shut down the voices of gays or blacks, the MSM would notice.

But, once again the 'doting court eunuchs' of the MSM fail to notice... eff you New York Times.

15 posted on 06/17/2012 4:04:17 PM PDT by GOPJ (The 'doting court eunuchs' of the MSM fail to notice...)
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To: Republican Wildcat

Miotch is Soetoro’s bi-otch. Just resign you feckless RINO.

16 posted on 06/17/2012 4:10:06 PM PDT by VRWC For Truth (Throw the bums out who vote yes on the bailout)
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To: Republican Wildcat
I know this means nothing to Barry and his worshipers, but doesn't Media Matters enjoy 501.3c tax free status which bars entanglement with political parties?
17 posted on 06/17/2012 4:47:36 PM PDT by Cheerio (Barry Hussein Soetoro-0bama=The Complete Destruction of American Capitalism)
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To: Republican Wildcat; All

when the GOP decides to put on their pants, fight in the same manner, call out financial terrorists like george soros for what they are, and give the rats a taste of their own medicine, this sh!t will finally stop....until then the rats will contiue to go down this path...

18 posted on 06/17/2012 5:08:15 PM PDT by God luvs America (63.5million pay no federal income tax then vote demoKrat)
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To: Republican Wildcat

Is that right Barack Hussein?

Well, here's my reply...and the horse you rode in on!


19 posted on 06/17/2012 6:55:54 PM PDT by Conservative Vermont Vet
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To: Republican Wildcat


...had no security...

20 posted on 06/17/2012 7:01:48 PM PDT by combat_boots (The Lion of Judah cometh. Hallelujah. Gloria Patri, Filio et Spiritui Sancto.)
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