ABC, CBS and NBC All Fail to ID Indicted Mayor as a Democrat --3/25/2008
2. ABC's Good Morning America Skips Kilpatrick's Party Affiliation
3. Newsweek: Sean Hannity and Rush Limbaugh Are 'Hating America'
4. Matthews Urges Clarence Page to Get Pro-Jeremiah Wright Tapes Out
5. Under Three Weeks Until MRC's 'DisHonors Awards,' Get Tickets Now
6. Letterman's 'Top Ten Signs the Government Is Spying on You'
Two weeks since the ABC and NBC evening shows took multiple days before getting around to informing viewers that disgraced New York Governor Eliot Spitzer belonged to the Democratic Party -- after every ABC, CBS and NBC morning and evening news program last year immediately highlighted the party of Republican Senators David Vitter and Larry Craig -- Monday's broadcast network evening newscasts all failed to note, verbally or on-screen, Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick's party.
ABC anchor Charles Gibson announced on World News: "Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick was charged today with felonies that could cost him his job and 15 years in prison." NBC Nightly News anchor Brian Williams relayed how "Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick...was indicted on perjury and other charges in the wake of a sex scandal there." (NBC also refused to tag Kilpatrick in a full story aired Friday night.) Over on Monday's CBS Evening News, fill-in anchor Harry Smith introduced a full story: "In Detroit, a sex scandal led to criminal charges today against the Mayor, Kwame Kilpatrick, a married father of three."
[This item, by the MRC's Brent Baker, was posted Monday night on the MRC's blog, NewsBusters.org: newsbusters.org ]
The brief update from Gibson on the Monday, March 24 World News on ABC: "Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick was charged today with felonies that could cost him his job and 15 years in prison. Kilpatrick is charged, along with his female former chief of staff. Explicit text messages contradict their sworn testimony that they did not have an affair. Kilpatrick, charged with perjury, obstruction of justice, conspiracy and misconduct, says he expects to be cleared."
The short item from Brian Williams on the NBC Nightly News: "We are covering America tonight, beginning in Detroit, where Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick -- that's his police booking photo -- was indicted on perjury and other charges in the wake of a sex scandal there. The Mayor denied having an affair with his chief of staff until text messages showed otherwise. He faces up to 15 years in prison and expulsion from office, if he's found guilty. He said today he'll be exonerated."
Harry Smith set up the CBS Evening News story: "In Detroit, a sex scandal led to criminal charges today against the Mayor, Kwame Kilpatrick, a married father of three. Prosecutors say his own text messages prove he committed perjury. Dean Reynolds has the story."
Reynolds began: "At 38, Kwame Kilpatrick is the youngest Mayor in Detroit's history. Once an up-and-coming star, he now has another less-welcome distinction....prosecutors charged Kilpatrick with eight felonies, alleging he lied under oath about an affair with a top aide, blocked an investigation into it and used taxpayer dollars to hush it up...."
The March 24 CyberAlert article, "Here We Go Again: Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick (?)," recounted:
The week after it took the NBC Nightly News until the fourth day of coverage to inform viewers that disgraced then-New York Governor Eliot Spitzer is a Democrat, Friday's NBC Nightly News ran a full story on the scandalous behavior surrounding Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick, but never identified his political party. Naturally, given the lack of a party identification by the mainstream media journalists, he's a Democrat. Anchor Brian Williams set up the story: "The city of Detroit is in a crisis over government and leadership. The current Mayor is just the latest Detroit Mayor elected on a promise to clean up and revitalize the city. Now he's been caught in a sex scandal, a trail of electronic messages reportedly provides the evidence, it threatens his career and then some."
Reporter Kevin Tibbles, also sans any mention of a party affiliation, outlined: "The Detroit city council votes overwhelmingly to ask the Mayor to resign. 37-year-old Kwame Kilpatrick, in his second term of the Mayor of the Motor City, is mired in financial, political, and personal scandal, but refuses to budge."
For the entire previous CyberAlert item: www.mrc.org
The March 14 CyberAlert item by Rich Noyes, "Study: No (D) for Spitzer, Vitter and Craig Always Tagged as GOP," explained:
The big three broadcast networks have gone out of their way to avoid labeling scandal-scarred New York Governor Eliot Spitzer as a "Democrat." An examination of the fifteen ABC, CBS and NBC morning and evening news shows through Wednesday night finds Spitzer was called a Democrat just 20 percent of the time -- twice on CBS, once on ABC, and never on NBC. So, how do the networks treat Republicans involved in sex scandals? Always, always as "Republicans." Looking at the ABC, CBS, NBC morning and evening shows in the days after the most recent scandals broke, Republican Senators David Vitter (July) and Larry Craig (August) were labeled "Republican" on every show (100 percent). Yet for Democrat Spitzer, four out of five news programs (80 percent) have skipped his party identification....
For the full rundown: www.mrc.org
For how ABC's World News avoided labeling Spitzer until the third day, check the March 13 CyberAlert: "ABC Finally IDs Spitzer as Democrat, NBC Fails to for Third Night." See: www.mrc.org
For NBC's dodging of Spitzer's party affiliation until the fourth night of coverage, check the March 14 CyberAlert: "NBC Finally Calls Spitzer 'Democratic Governor'" Go to: www.mrc.org
Good Morning America co-host Chris Cuomo somehow managed to make it through an entire Monday segment on Kwame Kilpatrick, the scandal-ridden Democratic mayor of Detroit, without mentioning his political affiliation (other than a brief, non-verbal video graphic). Cuomo described Kilpatrick as the "beleaguered mayor," a "prominent politician," and, simply, "the mayor."
In contrast, while GMA's report on Kilpatrick was a rather straight forward recitation of the facts, the morning program wondered in August of 2007 if Senator Larry Craig's bathroom scandal could spell doom for the Republican Party. On August 28, 2007, guest co-host Bill Weir gravely wondered, "Is the GOP losing its grip?" For a round-up of media coverage in relation to Larry Craig and the GOP, see an August 29, 2007 CyberAlert posting: www.mrc.org
[This item, by the MRC's Scott Whitlock, was posted Monday afternoon on the MRC's blog, NewsBusters.org: newsbusters.org ]
Of course, ABC hasn't been the only network ignoring the fact that Kilpatrick is a Democrat. On March 21, NBC's Nightly News followed the exact same tactic while covering Kilpatrick, who was charged on Monday morning with felony perjury charges for covering up an affair with a staffer. This is also the same news program that waited four days to inform viewers that disgraced ex-Governor Eliot Spitzer was also a Democrat. See a March 24 CyberAlert posting for more: www.mrc.org
Continuing the pattern, an AP story that appeared on Monday, shortly after Kilpatrick was charged, also failed to ID the mayor as a Democrat.
A transcript of the March 24 segment, which aired at 7:17am, follows:
ROBIN ROBERTS: We're going to turn now to the mayor of Detroit who could be facing some very serious criminal charges later today. He is the latest politician to be hit by a sex scandal but this time it isn't the scandal itself that could undo him, it's what he has said about it. Chris has been following it for us. 'Cause it is a little confusing.
Newsweek's snarky "Conventional Wisdom Watch" column has once again displayed the inaccuracy of its title. "Pathetic Liberal Spin In 20 Words Or Less" is more accurate, but not very catchy. In the new (March 31) edition, Barack Obama gets a sideways arrow -- like he had an okay week instead of a down-arrow week??? -- while "Hannity" is singled out for a down arrow with these twelve words of supposed wisdom: "Along with Rush, uses race-baiting to score ratings. Now that's hating America."
"Barack" gets a sideways arrow with this message: "Will the greatest speech in recent history get him sidelined as a 'black candidate'"?
Oh, and Jeremiah Wright gets a down arrow: "Why keep preaching inflammatory sermons with candidate Barack in the pews? Dumb."
The box in the March 31 edition of the magazine: www.newsweek.com
[This item, by the MRC's Tim Graham, was posted Monday on the MRC's blog, NewsBusters.org: newsbusters.org ]
So, Reverend Wright's offense was not hate-filled sermons, but the inconvenient political timing of the hate-filled sermons. Is Wright not guilty of "race baiting"? Is it simply defined as "race baiting" for radio hosts like Hannity and Limbaugh to object to his sermons for their attacks on the country Obama is seeking to lead?
The column idea is credited to senior editor Jonathan Alter. His Newsweek biography explains: "Alter is also an originator and author of Newsweek's 'Conventional Wisdom Watch,' which uses up, down and sideways arrows to measure and lampoon the news." See: www.newsweek.com
Chicago Tribune columnist Clarence Page defended Rev. Jeremiah Wright, on The Chris Matthews Show over the weekend, as he claimed tapes existed that put Barack Obama's former pastor in a better light than those clips of him damning America, to which Matthews requested of Page: "Would you get those tapes out?...Let's get the good tapes out."
[This item, by Geoffrey Dickens, was posted Monday afternoon on the MRC's blog, NewsBusters.org: newsbusters.org ]
The following exchange occurred on the March 23 edition of The Chris Matthews Show:
CHRIS MATTHEWS: We put it to The Matthews Meter, 12 of our regulars. If Obama is the nominee, will he be defined by race in the fall election? Well, it looks like Obama can still be the transformative candidate on that front. Ten to two, the meter says no, Obama would not be defined by race in the fall. Norah and Clarence, you're both with the 10. You're upbeat on this. We're gonna see beyond color here.
Less than three weeks until the MRC's 2008 "DisHonors Awards." The MRC's annual video awards with the "William F. Buckley Award for Media Excellence," this year presented to Tony Snow, will take place in Washington, DC on Thursday evening, April 10. Confirmed participants: Ann Coulter, Larry Kudlow, Mark Levin, Cal Thomas and many more since surprise conservative guests will accept the awards in jest. Get your tickets now.
"It was a terrific show...It was a great, great, great assemblage of people... Everybody just had a blast!" -- Rush Limbaugh, 2007 recipient of the William F. Buckley Jr. Award for Media Excellence.
Make your reservation today. Every year our gala sells out, so don't delay.
Individual seats available for $250. To reserve your seat(s), contact the MRC's Sara Bell at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Or call, 9 to 5:30 PM EDT weekdays: (800) 672-1423.
Online page with information: www.mrc.org
For a look at all the fun at last year's event: www.mediaresearch.org
From the March 24 Late Show with David Letterman, the "Top Ten Signs the Government Is Spying on You." Late Show home page: www.cbs.com
10. You turn on television and see a live feed of your shower
9. While you're ordering pizza, mysterious voice on the phone tells you to forget the mushrooms
8. There's been an ice cream truck parked outside your house for 9 months
7. Your dog has an antenna
6. You came home early and found an agent dusting your wife for prints
5. Your cat has an antenna
4. After eating a falafel, your name was added to the "Do Not Fly" list
3. Drudge Report features exclusive news about your breakfast
2. CIA director Hayden calls and says, "Judging by these surveillance photos, you should get that thing on your ass looked at"
1. During State of the Union, President suggests you to ask your doctor about Levitra
-- Brent Baker