At the same time his company’s cable outlet MSNBC was having a Democratic lovefest during the DNC, NBC’s Tom Brokaw had the audacity to deny liberal bias was a problem right to Sean Hannity’s face.
Appearing on Wednesday’s edition of FNC’s Hannity the former NBC Nightly News anchor was challenged by Hannity about his industry’s “bias.” Brokaw, initially tried to deflect the question as he charged: “I think you have a bias to the right” and then resorted to semantics as he feebly countered: “bias is the wrong word.”
After Hannity pressed Brokaw that: “Conservatives like myself, for years, have pointed out media bias. Do you understand why we say that? And I do a whole - I do an example every week, we do Media Mash. And we show the mainstream media, in particular and we show examples of just how biased they are,” Brokaw curtly responded: “Well I think you have a bias to the right.” A defensive Brokaw would go on to add: “Bias is the wrong word...The right word is trying to have a big picture of what is going on over a long period of time.”
The following is the relevant exchange as it was aired on the September 5 edition of Fox News’ Hannity:
SEAN HANNITY: Conservatives like myself, for years, have pointed out media bias. Do you understand why we say that? And I do a whole - I do an example every week, we do Media Mash. And we show the mainstream media, in particular-
TOM BROKAW: Right.
HANNITY: -and we show examples of just how biased they are. And I think that one of the reasons Fox is popular is because of that. Do you see-
BROKAW: Well I think you have a bias to the right. So I think that, that helps you.
HANNITY: I’m the only conservative, outspoken conservative here, by the way.
BROKAW: No, I know. But I do, I think and I think that Roger [Ailes] when he put this together – I’ve known him a long time – he knew exactly what he was doing. He knew that there was a big audience out there who wanted to have their points of view reaffirmed on a daily basis or on a nightly basis. Sure, from time to time there will be people-
HANNITY: Time to time or pretty regularly?
BROKAW: No, no you know the - bias is the wrong word.
HANNITY: What’s the word?
BROKAW: The right word is trying to have a big picture of what is going on over a long period of time. You can take a moment and say, “Well that was biased reporting.”
HANNITY: I gotta run but-
BROKAW: That maybe what the reporter found out, at that time, that’s what the interpretations seem fair to every one at the moment. And then we find out over time. Look, I’ve been doing this for a long time. During the 1960s, in the civil rights movement, I was called a communist. I was called a reporter from Pravda because I was covering civil rights, after all.
HANNITY: Interesting. Alright. Always good to see you.
-- Geoffrey Dickens is the Deputy Research Director at the Media Research Center. Click here to follow Geoffrey Dickens on Twitter.