Media Reality Check

When ABC, CBS, and NBC finally got around to covering -- after two weeks of silence -- the controversy over the Obama administration's mandate that religious institutions provide health insurance for abortifacients, sterilization, and birth control, the networks downplayed the religious freedom component to the story, casting it instead as a political dogfight between liberals and conservatives. MRC analysts studied all 36 stories, interview segments and mentions of the HHS mandate story on the Big Three broadcast networks from January 30 through February 15. Out of the 91 talking heads who appeared as soundbites on their morning or evening programs... continue reading
Deaths, guns, whistle-blowers and the highest law officer in the land stonewalling a congressional investigation are the juicy ingredients of a story network news reporters would love to cover – if a Republican were in office. However, when Attorney General Eric Holder testified on Thursday (February 2) before a House oversight committee investigating Operation Fast and Furious, the news was completely ignored by NBC and ABC (there was one full story on Friday's CBS This Morning ). The virtual blackout of Holder's testimony continues an overall trend of ABC and NBC burying one of the Obama administration's biggest scandals, despite... continue reading
When the Susan G. Komen Foundation, the U.S.'s largest breast cancer charity, announced on February 1 that it would no longer be donating to Planned Parenthood, the Big Three networks - ABC, CBS, NBC - rushed to the defense of the left-wing organization, which is the largest abortion conglomerate in the United States. Over the course of about 60 hours, ABC, CBS, and NBC emphasized the controversy with a whopping 13 morning and evening news stories. The soundbite count was loaded: 76 percent of the quotes came from supporters of Planned Parenthood (35 in total). Only 11 clips or statements... continue reading
Tuesday night, President Obama delivers his third State of the Union address, and his sixth speech to a joint session of Congress since taking office in 2009. But there's no need to spend a lot of time wondering about what the media will say after The Great One speaks, since — like a gaggle of corporate yes-men — journalists have gushed over every one of these major addresses. " It was a big and bold speech ," ABC's Terry Moran applauded on Nightline shortly after Obama's budget address in February 2009, his first before Congress. "It was his debut and... continue reading
By many measures, Barack Obama has left the State of the Union in tatters, but the liberal media, led by the highly rated Big Three network (ABC, CBS, NBC) news shows, have attempted to cover up those holes in the Union by mostly ignoring the Obama administration's greatest failings. From record numbers of people on food stamps, to the administration's support of failed energy companies while rejecting an oil pipeline that would result in thousands of jobs, the Big Three networks haven't told their viewers the full story of Obama's pathetic track record. The following are just a few of... continue reading
This week the Today show is celebrating 60 years of being on the air, and for over 20 of those years the MRC has been documenting the NBC morning show's liberal agenda. From past anchors like Bryant Gumbel blaming "right wing" talk radio for the Oklahoma City bombing and Katie Couric trashing Ronald Reagan as an "airhead," up through current anchor Matt Lauer wondering how Barack Obama would "manage the expectations" of being called "The Messiah," MRC analysts have been documenting the worst the show has offered. The following are 10 of the most obnoxiously liberal examples of Today show... continue reading
The GOP presidential candidates, at the upcoming ABC News debate in Iowa, should brace themselves to be splattered with tough questions from the left from moderator George Stephanopoulos. The good news for them is that most should be well-prepared for the left-leaning sliders, as many have already been subjected to Stephanopoulos's liberal questioning on Good Morning America . In 20 interview segments this year with the GOP candidates, totaling nearly two hours (110 minutes), an MRC review has documented Stephanopoulos has consistently pressed his guests from the left. Of questions with an ideological bent 75 percent (36) were from the... continue reading
ABC, CBS and NBC have continued their overly positive coverage of the Occupy Wall Street (OWS) protestors, devoting a massive number of stories (81 in just the month of October) to the leftist, anti-capitalist movement. This is a far cry from the coverage they initially gave the Tea Party protest, granting them a scant 13 stories all of 2009. More troubling, the radicalism and criminal acts at some of the protests have been virtually ignored by the Big Three networks. This was bound to happen given the overwhelming disparity in the number of soundbites (19 to 1 ratio) devoted to... continue reading
Since the Herman Cain sexual harassment story broke late Sunday night, the broadcast networks have covered it extensively: full stories on Monday's morning news shows (ABC's Good Morning America led off their broadcast); full stories on Monday's evening news shows (the CBS Evening News made it their top item) and ABC's Nightline; and the top story on all three Tuesday morning shows . Good Morning America's George Stephanopoulos on Monday hyped the story as a "bombshell blast" and on Tuesday he derided Cain's "bizarre series of interviews" on the subject. On Tuesday's Early Show, Jan Crawford highlighted how Cain has... continue reading
[UPDATE at end of post: Cooper responds, via Politico.] Tuesday night's Republican debate in Las Vegas will be moderated by CNN anchor Anderson Cooper. The CNN promo urges viewers to "See if what happens in Vegas gets them closer to the White House." But Cooper's nightly Anderson Cooper 360 often looks like it's trying to keep Republicans away from the White House. CNN advertises Cooper's regular segment, "Keeping Them Honest," with the question: "Who's Anderson keeping honest tonight?" Apparently, CNN and Cooper find Republicans are much more dishonest. Since July, a review of "Keeping Them Honest" segments found 24 reports... continue reading