By Pam Martens and Russ Martens: April 6, 2016
According to ABC exit polls, Senator Bernie Sanders big win of 56.5 percent to Hillary Clinton’s 43.1 percent in the Democratic primary yesterday in Wisconsin was fueled by voters belief in his honesty, his ability to inspire and confidence that he can improve the economy. But the very day that Sanders should be enjoying that big win, the New York Daily News has seen fit to devote its full front cover of today’s newspaper to shaming Sanders.
What did Sanders do to infuriate the New York Daily News? Absolutely nothing. The newspaper has twisted an interview its editorial board conducted with Sanders on April 1 into a pretzel to come up with a headline screaming that Sanders “callously defends gunmakers” against the relatives of the victims of the Sandy Hook school shooting, who are attempting to sue the gun manufacturer for selling the assault weapon that killed the children and school staff.
What Sanders actually said in that interview is that (1) he would vote to ban assault weapons like the one used in Sandy Hook; (2) he supports suing gun manufacturers if they knowingly sell a gun to people exhibiting suspicious behavior; (3) he would “significantly strengthen and expand the instant background check,” (4) “do away with the gun show loophole, where people now are buying guns from unlicensed dealers,” and (5) “do away with the straw man provision, where you can buy a gun legally and then sell it to somebody who’s a criminal.” (Read the full transcript here.)
The part that the New York Daily News has exploded into a front page cover went like this:
Daily News: There’s a case currently waiting to be ruled on in Connecticut. The victims of the Sandy Hook massacre are looking to have the right to sue for damages the manufacturers of the weapons. Do you think that that is something that should be expanded?
Sanders: Do I think the victims of a crime with a gun should be able to sue the manufacturer, is that your question?
Daily News: Correct.
Sanders: No, I don’t… No, let me just…I’m sorry. In the same sense that if you’re a gun dealer and you sell me a gun and I go out and I kill him [gestures to someone in room]…. Do I think that that gun dealer should be sued for selling me a legal product that he misused? [Shakes head no.] But I do believe that gun manufacturers and gun dealers should be able to be sued when they should know that guns are going into the hands of wrong people. So if somebody walks in and says, “I’d like 10,000 rounds of ammunition,” you know, well, you might be suspicious about that. So I think there are grounds for those suits, but not if you sell me a legal product…”
Frankly, it seems bizarre that the New York Daily News seems to be charging Senator Bernie Sanders, a Democratic Socialist whose entire life has been about boosting the little guy, with being too much of a capitalist and attempting to shield a corporation.
Under the New York Daily News’ bizarre premise of legal liability, automobile manufacturers of high speed sports cars could be sued if a person buys their car, gets drunk and mows down innocent pedestrians. Small plane manufacturers would be subject to lawsuits if they unknowingly sold a plane to a future drug addict who flew it into an apartment building full of innocent people. And on and on. If you want to talk about a job killer in America, this nutty theory of legal liability is it.
The first half of the article in the New York Daily News that accompanied the bold cover headline blatantly distorted the actual editorial board interview with Sanders, making it appear that Sanders was cut and dry on the Sandy Hook issue and failing to provide any of the steps he stated that he would vote for to rein in gun sale abuses. The first three paragraphs read:
“Presidential populist Bernie Sanders came under blistering fire Tuesday for opposing efforts by families of Sandy Hook shooting victims to sue gun manufacturers.
“Sanders, in an exclusive interview with the Daily News last week, said, ‘No, I don’t,’ when asked if victims of a crime with a gun should be able to sue the manufacturer.
“His Democratic rival and her Connecticut supporters took aim at the upstart, saying the Vermont senator was out of touch on the issue after the full transcript of his remarks were released Tuesday.”
The bias in this article is overtly clear in calling Sanders, a man who has served in the U.S. Congress for 25 years, an “upstart.” This is meant to further feed the New York media narrative that Hillary Clinton is the more experienced candidate.
Clearly, Wisconsin Democrats and Independents who handed Sanders a 13 point victory over Clinton want experience infused with a track record of honesty. According to ABC exit polls, 90 percent of voters in yesterday’s Democratic primary “identified Sanders as honest and trustworthy” versus “57 percent who said the same about Clinton.”
The ABC exit poll also found that “Three-quarters of Democratic primary voters in Wisconsin are worried about the direction of the economy. Nearly four in 10 expect life for the next generation of Americans to be worse than life today, vs. only a third who think it’ll be better.”
The New York Daily News front cover comes just 13 days before the Democratic primary in New York State where Sanders has shrunk Hillary’s lead to approximately 10 points. That in itself is amazing for the so-called “upstart” considering that Clinton served two terms in Congress as a New York State Senator and has tens of millions of dollars flowing into her campaign from New York billionaires, hedge funds, Wall Street bank executives and their law firms.