Audio: Sen. Jeff Sessions talks up talk radio’s effect on the immigration bill’s demise

posted at 9:32 am on June 29, 2007 by Bryan

It’s true, talk radio had a huge influence on the bill’s demise. But it’s also true that we saw a paradigm shift of sorts this week, in a battle that came to a comic denoument when the Wall Street Journal got all skeered of Hot Air’s shadowy, and quite nonexistent, money people. As the MSM has given ground to talk radio over the years, talk radio has now given some ground to the blogs. And as if in return, the blogs are at the forefront of the fight against the Fairness Doctrine, which is mostly a threat to talk radio. Let’s hope Rush et al have our backs when the inevitable leftist push comes to shove in our direction. I know Laura Ingraham, Mark Levin, Hugh Hewitt and one or two others will be there for us. Others, it’s hard to say.

This clip is from Mark Levin yesterday, in the wake of the death of shamnesty. Sen. Sessions credits the talkers. That’s part of the story, but not all of it. The unprecedented unleashing of YouTube by the people against the powerful was a true first, and it won’t be a last. Mickey Kaus unleashed a little idea that’s going to be with us for a long time to come. YouTube and online video in general will be a major battleground during next year’s elections, with little factories run by pros and hobbyists cranking out video ads and attacks and editorials 24/7. Fred! is already counting on you to do much of his online production work for free–I think that’s a major part of his hidden strategy (which makes this glaring omission all the more obvious and strange). Some of you are already his operatives, more or less.

We’ve seen glimpses of online video’s increasing role in politics since about 2004 and Macaca was a watershed last year, but this coming election is the one where it really comes together thanks to dramatic improvements in online delivery via Flash, increased bandwidth and cheap yet powerful video editing software that’s out there, and your increasing awareness of what can be done for little or no expense. Plus YouTube, which wasn’t even around in 2004.

And I haven’t even mentioned the “tactical nuclear” strategy that we had developed here, to launch if cloture looked like it was going to succeed Thursday morning. I’ll think I’ll save that one for the next battle royale.

The Levin-Sessions riff is a good clip, but without a mention of the blogs and their role in shamnesty’s timely death, it’s just not quite there yet.


Now, for a counterpoint on basic First Amendment freedom, head over to “Think” Progress and listen to the Speaker of the House talk about “hate radio” “hijacking” the debate. At precisely the time when the world is falling apart, with the Russians making a land grab at the North Pole, Venezuela hinting that it might go nuclear, Iran and North Korea and Iraq and Afghanistan and much of Africa festering and China on the rise, the Democrats are going to wage a divisive battle on our own basic freedoms. The Fairness Doctrine may have lost yesterday, but it’s far from dead.

And ain’t it funny how Democrats like Pelosi and Obama like to talk about “hijacking” in US political contexts, but not in contexts where using that word actually makes sense. Because, of course, the war on terrorism is just a bumper sticker.


Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Note from Hot Air management: This section is for comments from Hot Air's community of registered readers. Please don't assume that Hot Air management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment just because we let it stand. A reminder: Anyone who fails to comply with our terms of use may lose their posting privilege.

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

Fine post, Bryan. It worries me there’s not more alarm over the Stalinist left’s attack on the First Amendment freedoms.

If we lose in 2008, we’ll likely lose talk radio… and then the blogs.

petefrt on June 29, 2007 at 9:41 AM

As I said before, in the leftist mindset:

Dissent they agree with == the highest form of patriotism
Dissent they don’t agree with == hate speech

Bigfoot on June 29, 2007 at 9:45 AM

It’s all bluster, it’s their version of “I’ll tell my big brother on you”

JackS on June 29, 2007 at 9:46 AM

we have a tactical nuclear option? I feel all tingly with anticipation.

TexasDan on June 29, 2007 at 9:46 AM

Gee, and here I thought I was being what they call patriotic: Questioning the government!

Thanks for pointing out my mistake, Bigfoot.

JamesLee on June 29, 2007 at 9:47 AM

I don’t think you have to worry too much about getting credit for your influence on the amnesty bill. Both Michelle’s blog and this one were receiving server crushing traffic yesterday as people looked here for their up to the minute information on the debate and vote. That says enough right there.

bj1126 on June 29, 2007 at 9:49 AM

Let’s hope Rush et al have our backs when the inevitable leftist push comes to shove in our direction.

To be fair, I don’t think there is much question of that. He cites blogs on air with some frequency.

Spirit of 1776 on June 29, 2007 at 9:49 AM

Bryan, Allah, Shelley … so sorry to hear that there is no super secret financial backer. This explains the iphone imbroglio, doesn’t it? (Btw, AP, is that you in the NYT photo, asleep on the filthy sidewalk outside FAO Schwartz “waiting in line” for an iphone?)

Good luck finding one. I’m a little short again this month, but I’ll see what I can do.

Jaibones on June 29, 2007 at 9:57 AM

That talk show hosts and every day folks knew as much or even more about this horribly egregious bill is telling.

Not only does their gaining the knowledge speak to the fact that we care about and want to be involved in our own government but that members of our government will in future have to face a higher standard if they want to be hired and they will have a higher accountability while in office.

It’s impossible not to equate that this would be exactly what our founders devised and envisioned as necessary for the health of the several states.

So far as ‘fairness’ before our hapless electives go after talk radio they need to go after George Soros’ cartel, the broadcast media is under his evil spell spewing his commie message multiple times each and every day and that any of our erstwhile leaders would consider shutting up the public instead is gauling to say the least.

Speakup on June 29, 2007 at 9:57 AM

(Btw, AP, is that you in the NYT photo, asleep on the filthy sidewalk outside FAO Schwartz “waiting in line” for an iphone?)

I’m guessing he’s the guy in the Spider-Man pajamas. ;)

Mindcrime on June 29, 2007 at 10:00 AM

Spirit of 1776 on June 29, 2007 at 9:49 AM

To be fair, I don’t think there is much question of that. He cites blogs on air with some frequency.

Absolutely. There is, however, at least one host on the right, who seems antagonistic towards the blogs. And that’s Bill O’Reilly. On more than one occasion, he suggested that those “Internet People” need to be reigned in. I really don’t understand it. He generally uses a little common sense, but on this issue, he’s out to lunch.

kayawanee on June 29, 2007 at 10:00 AM

Sessions is one of the most important conservatives in Washington, and he’s done outstanding work pointing out what a piece of crap the immigration bill truly was. I hope that blogs and talk radio help keep him honest – since other ‘rock-ribbed conservatives’ of the 90s have sold themselves off to the lobby with the most money, gone hog wild for pork, or both.

Trent Lott is the perfect example of this. In 1994, Lott was one of *the* conservatives in the Senate – he even was hit with the coveted ‘right-wing extremist’ tag a few times by the MSM if I remember correctly. Now he’s just a somewhat younger version of Robert C. Byrd. As Rush pointed out, even Grahamnesty used to be reliably conservative. Not to mention guys like Larry Craig and Orrin Hatch.

Sessions, DeMint, and their buddies are kicking butt in the Senate now, but we need to keep tabs on them in case they ‘grow in office,’ which senators are wont to do. It’s just hard to find dependable conservative legislators these days. *cough*BROWNBACK*cough*

fiatboomer on June 29, 2007 at 10:02 AM

If Pelosi, Ried and the rest of our “esteemed” Congress think the outrage over Shamnesty was bad, just wait until they seriously start talking about revitalizing any form of the Fairness Doctrine.

They ain’t seen nothin’ yet.

BacaDog on June 29, 2007 at 10:03 AM

Oh, AP. Drove by the ATT store in Short Pump, Va on the way to work this morning. Absolutely no one in line there or at the Circuit City.

Come on down.

BacaDog on June 29, 2007 at 10:05 AM

Shelley
Jaibones on June 29, 2007 at 9:57 AM

Shelley. Shelley?!

IrishEi on June 29, 2007 at 10:06 AM

head over to “Think” Progress

Shouldn’t that be “Think”"Progress”, since neither one has anything to do with liberalism? If leftists could do anything honestly (“Fairness” Doctrine, anyone?), that site would be called stalinism.com. And the Blinker of the House, who drools at the thought of silencing anybody to the right of Che Guevara, fits right in with them.

ReubenJCogburn on June 29, 2007 at 10:08 AM

Not comfortable with the current situation at all. Democrats have been repeating this mantra since the election: “You wanted this.” Rule of Thumb: If the Left hammers something incessently, be skeptical.
How true is that when during the election, the state-wide population of Missouri voted in huge lines, record turn-outs and all day long the Republican was comfortably ahead, then lose it, literally at the 11th hour as the St. Louis precincts finally reported, the results going so one-sidedly Democrat that the Republican’s lead shrank, disappeared, then went into the negatives.
Seems that the City of St. Louis decided for the entire state of Missouri that it would be Democrat. The very same situation happened in Maryland. Baltimore alone decided the result for the whole state. Widespread Republican support was trumped by localized, concentrated Democrat numbers. Two senators, two national votes. Majority control goes to the Dems. To say, “We wanted this” doesn’t quite capture the truth here.
What does this bode for the upcoming election?

naliaka on June 29, 2007 at 10:09 AM

The leaders of the left do not acknowledge that they get their marching orders from the leftwing extremist blogs. Just like it is not whether a lie is true or false, if you are liberal, it is only if YOU believe it or not.

volsense on June 29, 2007 at 10:10 AM

I wish people would stop using the word dénouement.
They could instead, say “freedom end”.
Don’t they know that English is the Crème dela Crème of languages?

TheSitRep on June 29, 2007 at 10:11 AM

kayawanee on June 29, 2007 at 10:00 AM

Market share concerns? I don’t know why, but agree with your assessment.

Spirit of 1776 on June 29, 2007 at 10:23 AM

The Conservative coalition is one of riches, diversity of ideas and open discussion. All those things Liberals canno tolerate, like all dictators, Liberals must have silence to work their magic.

Now I only wish this same energy would turn towards the corruption pit of earmarks. Forcing corruption at it’s roots into the sunlight would be a real accomplishment.

tarpon on June 29, 2007 at 10:29 AM

Is it too much to hope that we don’t just defend against the FD, but also go on the counter-offensive… throughout the media?

Let them understand there’s a big price to pay for the mere introduction of such a Stalinist option.

petefrt on June 29, 2007 at 10:30 AM

The blogshpere is a new dynamic that a lot of journalists are not wrapping their head around. Bill O’Reilly is a perfect example. When he talks about that “Internet thing” or “those Internet people,” he really ought to do a little personal investigation.

This immigration bill may have made the blogsphere, at least on the right, grow up a little. We’ve now metamorphosed from a fringe group to an entity that frightens the establishment. No wonder they want the fairness doctrine reinstated. Before the Internet, people couldn’t be heard except through elections and pro forma stories by the MSM.

Fred! is already counting on you to do much of his online production work for free–I think that’s a major part of his hidden strategy (which makes this glaring omission all the more obvious and strange). Some of you are already his operatives, more or less.

I’d put a slightly more positive spin on that, Bryan. The “some of you” are a lot of us. We’re the grassroots supporters; the people who search the Internet daily for news that matters to us. Fred gets it; Mitt gets it; Rudy doesn’t; McCain Doesn’t. We’re not just online entities; we’re the people who are the workers in campaigns, the callers, the letter writers, the sign posters, the *engaged* ones.

We’re all grownups and our presence is being felt for the first time in a long time.

Tennman on June 29, 2007 at 10:38 AM

ARTICLE_ID=56431″> and from Bill Press

Two very different views from the Un”Fairness Doctrine”

Press whines about the need for balance but forgets to mention the progressive hold and dominance of msm.

Lindsey comes at from the definition and why it so important to the left.

warpmine on June 29, 2007 at 10:42 AM

Hal Lindsey here: http://www.wnd.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=56435

warpmine on June 29, 2007 at 10:44 AM

Bill Press here: http://www.wnd.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=56430

warpmine on June 29, 2007 at 10:45 AM

Hey, what is this? Since when does the public have the right to voice their opinion…that’s the job of congress. They are the only ones that can speak, vote, rule, dictate.

“We the people” is a mistake, it should read “We the chosen”.

How dare us stand up for what we believe, and knock down those mighty giants of leadership who want to open our borders.

BTW, since when is it not our borders?…we now know that Senators think they own the border.

right2bright on June 29, 2007 at 10:49 AM

thanks warpmine

Spirit of 1776 on June 29, 2007 at 10:58 AM

It’s going to be interesting to see how members of Congress view the reaction of the country to the immigration bill. I’m sure we will see those who want to “put those uppity citizens back in their place”. And others who will see the profound change that could come of this and make our Government better.

JackS on June 29, 2007 at 11:01 AM

Who has the most to lose if the Fairness Doctrine is reactivated? I say the liberal MSM and I think it does not have a ghosts chance in hell of passing. The liberals would never give up their MSM time just to get even with talk radio. They are just shooting off their blow holes now to rally the troops.

Wade on June 29, 2007 at 11:07 AM

If they were to pass the fairness doctrine or actually take down conservative blogs then we would have a lot in common with citizens in China.

I don’t think they have the balls to try to take the internet and radio on.

Then again I’m often shocked at the left’s hubris.

Trooper on June 29, 2007 at 11:15 AM

Who has the most to lose if the Fairness Doctrine is reactivated? I say the liberal MSM and I think it does not have a ghosts chance in hell of passing.

This is a common arguement, and we all have to get past the idea that the “Fairness” Doctrine will ever be applied to the MSM. It never was before and it won’t if applied again. It will only be aimed at conservative talk radio, not the TV networks.

We need to drop the Orwellian “Fairness” label and call it what it is, the Anti-First Amendment Doctrine – and make the brand stick.

If even Sen. Sonavovich (R-OH) can believe its a good thing based on the name, then think what the average person out there who doesn’t follow politics will think.

Nosferightu on June 29, 2007 at 11:16 AM

Exactly Trooper. The folks at Google and Microsoft think it’s A OK to censor the populous. You never hear the left bitch abot any of it. Only thing they can bitch at is jobs heading over seas because the unions can’t indoctrinate and confiscate wages and dues.

warpmine on June 29, 2007 at 11:22 AM

Who has the most to lose if the Fairness Doctrine is reactivated? I say the liberal MSM and I think it does not have a ghosts chance in hell of passing. The liberals would never give up their MSM time just to get even with talk radio.

That’s a false choice. The FD was the law of the land until 1987. When the FD ruled, there was no Rush Limbaugh but there was a Walter Cronkite. There was no alternative media but there was a liberally biased MSM. That’s the Eden that today’s libs want to return to, and reinstating the FD gets them past the angel with the flaming sword.

Bryan on June 29, 2007 at 11:32 AM

If even Sen. Sonavovich (R-OH) can believe its a good thing based on the name, then think what the average person out there who doesn’t follow politics will think.
See it this type of thinking that gets us in trouble. The average person is as smart if not smarter than a Senator. The debate on CIR should havemade this clear.

unseen on June 29, 2007 at 11:43 AM

What we are seeing today is a modern revolution. Our government will be forever changed by the information age. For the better I hope. When the campaigns can not spin it is a good thing

unseen on June 29, 2007 at 11:46 AM

The simple fact that seems to miss our “esteemed” leaders and talking heads, like O’Really?… is that there’s a BIG difference between talk radio/the blogs, and the rest of media. The difference IS “We the People”. Talk radio is so popular because it always offers regular folks getting heard. A platform for the average person. And the blogs…even MORE access to public debate. When they criticize Talk Radio and Blogs, there are telling US to shut up.

And since WE the PEOPLE were able to tell THEM to shut up over Shamnesty…they’re scared.

And Folks…THAT’s the way it should be!!

tickleddragon on June 29, 2007 at 11:49 AM

unseen on June 29, 2007 at 11:46 AM

A quick to-the-point way to say what took me a paragraph. ;)
I agree, but I offer the sword will cut both ways. But that is the truest definition of “fairness”.

tickleddragon on June 29, 2007 at 11:54 AM

For liberalism to survive, it needs victims. The latest victim is themselves and so they need to fight against their oppressors: talk radio and conservative blogs. Free speech be damned, they have to stand up for the victims.

Mallard T. Drake on June 29, 2007 at 12:32 PM

Lindsey Graham has a primary challenger!

PRCalDude on June 29, 2007 at 12:36 PM

We need to drop the Orwellian “Fairness” label and call it what it is, the Anti-First Amendment Doctrine – and make the brand stick.
Nosferightu on June 29, 2007 at 11:16 AM

Exactly. The same situation happened with abortion. They couldn’t call themselves “pro-abortion,” (too negative) so they called themselves “pro-choice” (much more democratic/American.)

IrishEi on June 29, 2007 at 1:00 PM

I really don’t think that talk radio defeated the Immigration Bill. I do think that a better informed public, who read portions of the bill posted on the internet, then “Googled” their senators’ phone numbers and called, e-mailed, and faxed their opposition killed this bill. The quick availability of accurate information on the internet, plus a well-informed public that’s sick and tired of “business as usual in Washington DC” killed this bill. Now maybe that same public will put enough heat on the congress-critters and White House to build the fence, secure the southern border, and start shipping illegals back to where they came. Let’s see if we can crash the government’s phone-lines again!

Jonas Parker on June 29, 2007 at 1:02 PM

TheSitRep on June 29, 2007 at 10:11 AM

Subtle. Nice. I wonder how many got it.

That’s the Eden that today’s libs want to return to, and reinstating the FD gets them past the angel with the flaming sword.

Bryan on June 29, 2007 at 11:32 AM

Good one, Bryan. Following your metaphor, Ronaldus Magnus booted them out of the garden. Now we just check to see which Clinton has a bruised heel, and we’ll have identified the serpent.

Freelancer on June 29, 2007 at 1:07 PM

But from the Olympian heights of the world’s greatest deliberative body, it is often forgotten. So senators got a reminder in the humiliating defeat of a “comprehensive” immigration bill that had the support of the president of the United States, a bipartisan group of senators with the blessing of the leaders of their caucuses, and the support of the editorial boards of the country’s most important newspapers

– Lowry

This is very significant. Yesterday’s result was the effect of a modern day Tea Party. Don’t be afraid of the FD coming up. I’m all for bringing it up soon. It will never pass, and not even the lefties will vote for it. The bipartisan alliance against the above trifecta is incredibly interesting.

Most invigorated from yesterday’s result are the American citizens of all persuasions, especially the saner ones. Yesterday the frustrating impotence of the citizenry came to an end. Much more to be done! 2008 will be one of the most interesting runs.

On talk radio versus blogging – and yes, it should come together, and will on all political sides, there are archaic factors in play. Most senators are old; most of them are just getting used to what their aids are whispering to them about new technology. Heck, Mr. Clinton himself wrote his fat biography in long-hand and had a secretary transcribe it (which I find odd about the technoloist of the Clinton era). Even Fred T. with the best intentions needs a lot of educating on who the players are.

Important is that the clarion call sounded and it will never be the same again. Great day for America, yesterday, and great day for freedom all over. Very inspiring and invigorating!

Entelechy on June 29, 2007 at 1:14 PM

Correction – s/b “technologists of the”

And, most important, I forgot to compliment Bryan and HA, and MM for the Herculean efforts. Platinum was the WSJ ‘little’ article. Huge!

Entelechy on June 29, 2007 at 1:21 PM

And I haven’t even mentioned the “tactical nuclear” strategy that we had developed here, to launch if cloture looked like it was going to succeed Thursday morning. I’ll think I’ll save that one for the next battle royale.

Like to torture us with speculation, do ya? When I get no sleep tonight wondering what said tactical nuke strategy actually was, I’m blaiming you Bryan.

:))

thirteen28 on June 29, 2007 at 1:33 PM

And I haven’t even mentioned the “tactical nuclear” strategy that we had developed here, to launch if cloture looked like it was going to succeed Thursday morning. I’ll think I’ll save that one for the next battle royale.

Bryan, you’re a brilliant and gorgeous evil genius!

tickleddragon on June 30, 2007 at 1:36 AM