I have no idea how badly the bridge scandal will damage Chris Christie, but we can say this for sure: it will do all the harm that the news media can gin up. The most striking fact about the story so far is the obvious contrast between reporters’ attitudes toward the many Obama administration scandals–ho hum–and the repellent glee with which they are pursuing the Christie story. (For just one example, check out CNN’s all-Christie all the time coverage.) Scott Whitlock has gotten out his stopwatch, and reports that in the last 24 hours, there has been 17 times as much Christie bridge coverage on network news than IRS coverage over the last six months. And that is only the tip of the iceberg.
It seems obvious that Obama’s IRS and Benghazi scandals are far more serious than the bridge lane closing, and Obama’s lockdown of national parks and monuments was a close parallel to the lane closure, only on a national scale. And, of course, one normally would expect the national media to pay far more attention to presidential than gubernatorial scandals. But the frenzy of the last 24 hours reminds us how excited reporters can get when they are going after a Republican. Including a moderate Republican like Christie; if he thought his photo ops with President Obama would buy him any good will with the press, he was sorely mistaken.
This is what I don’t get: don’t reporters understand how obvious it is that they delight in Republican scandals, and do their best to cover up Democratic ones? Have they so internalized their prejudices that they really can’t see them, and assume no one else does, either? Or do they just not care?