ABC/CBS Drool Over News Biden Will Make His First SCOTUS Appointment

With the news Wednesday that Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer will be retiring at the end of the current court term, the liberal evening news broadcasts were clearly excited by the fact that President Joe Biden will have the opportunity to nominate someone to the high court.

While hyperventilating over the news that Biden is expected to nominate an African-American woman to the bench, the liberal networks made sure to remind viewers how “pragmatic” and non-partisan Breyer was. 

ABC’s World News Tonight led with the news, with anchor David Muir eagerly reporting “Justice Stephen Breyer set to retire, according to sources aware of his decision. We await official word from the justice himself, who at 83 is the oldest Supreme Court Justice, the most senior member of the liberal wing.” Muir then laughably stated that Breyer was a “staunch defender of a nonpartisan court.”

Muir also wanted viewers to think Breyer was a “consensus seeker with a pragmatic vision of compromise.” Later on in the segment, ABC senior national correspondent Terry Moran repeated the liberal media narrative of the day: 

Breyer has been a centrist and a pragmatic justice, seeking ways to bridge the ideological divides and focusing on the real-world consequences of the court’s rulings. And he passionately insisted the Supreme Court is not a political institution.

Over on CBS’ Evening News, anchor Norah O’Donnell, who was clearly given the same talking points as ABC, announced at the top of her program that Breyer “found himself in the dissent on a bench that has moved more to the right with a 6-3 conservative majority.” 

So according to her framing, Breyer only found himself in the dissent because those in the conservative majority were wrong.

Senior White House and political correspondent Ed O’Keefe was also quick to highlight the good news for Democrats when he was talking with O’Donnell about how the announcement was leaked sooner than the Justice wanted:

The fact that it leaked now, even before he was able to tell some Supreme Court colleagues, gives the White House and the Democratic-controlled Senate more time to consider potential nominees, make the pick and hold hearings, it also gives them extra time should the President’s first choice get rejected, or have to withdraw and they need more time to pick someone else.

O’Keefe ended by exclaiming how Biden’s expected nomination of a “black woman ahead of the midterm elections, the President will hope to motivate his party’s base and show them that he made good on a campaign pledge.”

This latest example of the media rooting for Democrats was made possible by Allstate on CBS and TD Ameritrade on ABC. Their contact information is linked so you can let them know about the biased news they fund. 

To read the transcripts of each segment click “expand”:

ABC’s World News Tonight
1/26/2022
6:32:35 PM 

DAVID MUIR: We begin tonight with the major news from the Supreme Court today. Justice Stephen Breyer set to retire, according to sources aware of his decision. We await official word from the justice himself, who at 83 is the oldest Supreme Court Justice, the most senior member of the liberal wing. Long a staunch defender of a nonpartisan court. Tonight, his impending retirement giving President Biden his first opportunity to nominate a justice to the high court. And with the midterms coming and a razor-thin majority in the Senate, indications tonight this could move swiftly. Justice Breyer nominated by President Bill Clinton in 1994, confirmed by a vote of 87-9. He was known as a consensus seeker with a pragmatic vision of compromise. On the court for twenty-seven years. Justin Breyer has often spoke of his respect for his fellow justices no matter their point of view, but his decision to step down, the timing, he surely knows comes in a nation deeply divided. 

(…)

6:34:30 PM

TERRY MORAN: On the court, Breyer has been a centrist and a pragmatic justice, seeking ways to bridge the ideological divides and focusing on the real-world consequences of the court’s rulings. And he passionately insisted the Supreme Court is not a political institution.

CBS Evening News 
1/26/2022
6:31:58 PM 

NORAH O’DONNELL: Good evening, and thank you for joining us. We’re going to begin tonight with major news from here in the nation’s capitol. After nearly three decades on the Supreme Court, Justice Stephen Breyer is expected to retire. Sources tell CBS News that the 83-year-old will stay on the bench for the rest of this consequential term, deciding on major cases like abortion rights, and he’ll wait until the Senate confirms a successor. The liberal justice is under pressure from the left to step down while Democrats maintain control of the Senate and the White House, so his replacement won’t change the ideological makeup of the nation’s highest court. In recent years, Breyer has found himself in the dissent on a bench that has moved more to the right with a 6-3 conservative majority. President Biden will now be given the opportunity to fulfill a campaign promise and appoint the first black female Supreme Court Justice. 

(…)

6:35:53 PM 

ED O’KEEFE: While it was widely expected that Breyer would announce his retirement later this year, by the end of the court’s term, the fact that it leaked now, even before he was able to tell some Supreme Court colleagues, gives the White House and the Democratic-controlled Senate more time to consider potential nominees, make the pick and hold hearings, it also gives them extra time should the President’s first choice get rejected, or have to withdraw and they need more time to pick someone else. And by nominating a black woman ahead of the midterm elections, the President will hope to motivate his party’s base and show them that he made good on a campaign pledge.

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