To round out their political coverage Monday evening, NBC Nightly News anchor Lester Holt boasted of the network’s new series “My Big Idea”, which they planned to expand on as the 2020 Democratic primary continued.

Holt made it very clear that the series was only open to the “big ideas” that were being put forward by the leftist field. “And tonight, we’re launching a series with our Harry Smith to let candidates tell you the idea they say separates them from the vast field of contenders. We’re calling it ‘My Big Idea’, and first up, Senator Bernie Sanders.”

Where was this series in 2015 when the Republicans had their own oversized field of candidates? NBC must not have thought they had any “big ideas” worth promoting. They were too busy suggesting the GOP hated Hispanics.

Smith’s interview with socialist Senator Sanders started out with some real mind-numbing questions. “Softball” didn’t really describe Smith’s approach to the interview. Softballs have mass. He seemed to be throwing air:

HARRY SMITH: What’s your big idea?

BERNIE SANDERS: Medicare for all.

SMITH: Does that mean all?

SANDERS: Yeah, it means all.

With Sanders allowed to freely claim it was “not a radical idea,” Smith gushed about how Sanders had been preaching his socialist propaganda for decades (click “expand”):

SMITH: Perhaps because Bernie Sanders has been delivering much the same message for more than 30 years.

SANDERS: We’re going up, not down.

SMITH: Here’s Sanders. Then-mayor of Burlington Vermont, on the Today show in 1981.

SANDERS: You maybe have two percent of the population that owns one-third of all the entire wealth of America.

 

 

Of course, there was no mention that Sander had his honeymoon in the Soviet Union just a few short years later. Kind of an important thing to note since HBO’s Chernobyl was a smash hit; it might allow viewers to connect a few points. Smith also didn’t mention Sander’s numerous houses while he was fawning over the “tiny D.C. campaign office” the Senator was running out of.

Smith even did some of the leg work for the aging lawmaker and bragged about the supposed benefits of the program. “Americans would pay nothing at the doctor’s office, no co-pays at the E.R.” And like a late-night infomercial spokesperson shouting “wait there’s more”, he touted how Sanders was “even throwing in dental and vision care.”

The cost in the trillions, with a T,” Smith added, completely brushing over the estimated $32.6 trillion price tag. There were some estimates that said the federal government would need to somehow double the yearly revenue. How do Smith and NBC think that’s going to happen? Contrary to Smith’s own claims, people will have to pay something.

One of the last things the duo discussed was Smith’s fear that Republicans would call the plan “socialism”. After falsely claiming Medicare for all was “not a socialist program,” Sanders touted the systemically dysfunctional Veterans Administration as a model socialist program. And despite the fact that police and fire departments were funded at state and local levels (with a few private ones in the mix), he also boasted of their “socialist” roots.

If NBC’s “My Big Idea” continues to just be a megaphone for liberal policy pipedreams, and this poorly scrutinized, there’s going to be a lot for NewsBusters to slap down. Just because they’re “big ideas” doesn’t mean their good ideas.

The transcript is below, click “expand” to read:

NBC Nightly News
June 10, 2019
7:13:11 p.m. Eastern

LESTER HOLT: We’re less than three weeks away from the first 2020 Democratic presidential primary debate, here on NBC. And tonight, we’re launching a series with our Harry Smith to let candidates tell you the idea they say separates them from the vast field of contenders. We’re calling it “My Big Idea”, and first up, Senator Bernie Sanders.

[Cuts to video]

HARRY SMITH: What’s your big idea?

BERNIE SANDERS: Medicare for all.

SMITH: Does that mean all?

SANDERS: Yeah, it means all. I mean, let’s be clear, this is not a radical idea.

[Transition] Together, we have stood with the workers.

SMITH: Perhaps because Bernie Sanders has been delivering much the same message for more than 30 years.

SANDERS: We’re going up, not down.

SMITH: Here’s Sanders. Then-mayor of Burlington Vermont, on the Today show in 1981.

SANDERS: You maybe have two percent of the population that owns one-third of all the entire wealth of America.

SMITH: We met the senator on Capitol Hill.

MAN ON THE STREET: Yeah Bernie!

SMITH: In a tiny D.C. campaign office.

SANDERS: Bottom line is, Medicare is the most popular health insurance program in America, far more popular than private health insurances policies. And we think, if we expand Medicare over a four-year period, to all people, you’re going to see a lot of people being very satisfied.

SMITH: Americans would pay nothing at the doctor’s office, no co-pays at the E.R. He’s even throwing in dental and vision care. Companies would no longer offer private health care to employees. The cost in the trillions, with a T.

If I want to, can I opt out?

SANDERS: No.

SMITH: The word that will come from Republicans is: socialism.

SANDERS: Well, that may or may not be but as it happens, this is not a socialist program. You know what is a socialist program? It’s the Veteran’s Administration. You know what is a socialist program? Your police department. Your fire department. Those are government-run programs.

SMITH: Medicare for all. That’s Bernie Sanders big idea. Harry Smith, NBC News. Washington.

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