CBS News’ Nancy Cordes Repeats GOP Lie About Sen. Harry Reid Refusing to Help Cancer Stricken Kids

CBS’s Nancy Cordes repeated the GOP and the right wing media’s made up talking point on Sen. Harry Reid refusing to help cancer stricken kids.

Conservative media are selectively and deceptively quoting from an exchange between CNN’s Dana Bash Senate and Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) to make it appear as if he dismissed the plight of cancer-stricken children being denied access to clinical trials due to the shutdown of the federal government. In fact, Reid said that legislators should fully fund the government, rather than force different groups to fight over funding.

Specifically, conservatives are claiming that Reid replied to a reporter’s question, “If you can help one child with cancer, why wouldn’t you?” by saying “why would we want to do that?” In fact, Reid was responding to Sen. Chuck Schumer, who had interjected, saying “why pit one against the other?”

On October 1, the federal government was shut down after conservative Republicans refused to pass legislation funding operations unless that funding was tied to the defunding or delay of Obamacare. As part of an effort to avoid political damage from that unpopular decision, House Republicans have called for piecemeal bills that would fund some parts of the federal government, including the National Institutes of Health and national parks.

During a Senate press conference today, CNN’s Dana Bash asked Reid if he would support a bill that would reinstate funding to the National Institutes of Health, including a program providing access to clinical trials for children with cancer.

In response, Reid decried the idea that legislators can “pick and choose” which parts of the government should be funded, reiterating his desire for legislation to fully fund the federal government without strings attached.

After that Bash asked, “if you can help one child who has cancer, why wouldn’t you do it?”

Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) responded to her question by asking “why pit one against the other?” and Reid chimed in, “why would we want to do that? I have 1,100 people at Nellis Air Force base that are sitting home. They have a few problems of their own.”

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