Friday, February 29, 2008

Media Matters Daily Summary 02-29-08

AP, Cafferty noted Clinton has yet to release tax returns, but did not mention McCain's failure to do so
In reports on the fact that Sen. Hillary Clinton has yet to release her tax returns and White House records, the Associated Press and CNN's Jack Cafferty did not mention that Sen. John McCain has yet to release his filings and has reportedly made no pledge to do so. Read More

MSNBC military analyst Jacobs misquoted Obama, asserted: "Obama doesn't know what he's talking about"
Discussing a comment Sen. Barack Obama made about Al Qaeda in Iraq during the February 26 Democratic presidential debate, MSNBC military analyst Jack Jacobs misquoted Obama and also stated: "Obama doesn't know what he's talking about. ... I think it would be useful if he found out what was actually going on." Read More

Radio host McCullough reacted to Obama LGBT statement with blog headline "Obama: Hey Homos, I'm Your Dude!"
On his blog, Kevin McCullough posted an entry about Sen. Barack Obama's statement on "bring[ing] about real change for all LGBT [lesbian, gay, bisexual, transsexual] Americans" under the headline "Obama: Hey Homos, I'm Your Dude!" Read More

Fox's Emanuel conflated PAA with FISA to suggest Dem leaders "playing a high-stakes game" with Americans' safety
Like his Fox News colleague Steve Centanni, Mike Emanuel conflated the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act with the Protect America Act, asking President Bush at a recent news conference, "[D]o you worry that perhaps some House Democratic leaders are playing a high-stakes game of 'wait and see' in terms of if we get attacked, we all lose, if we don't get attacked, then maybe that makes the case that you don't need all the powers in FISA?" Read More

On Fox, "confused" Hill falsely claimed "the law that lets" U.S. officials "listen in to phone calls from overseas by known terrorists expired two weeks ago"
On Fox News' America's Pulse, E.D. Hill falsely asserted, "[T]he law that lets them [U.S. intelligence agencies] listen in to phone calls from overseas by known terrorists expired two weeks ago." In fact, the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) did not expire; what expired were revisions to FISA under the Protect America Act, which, among other things, expanded the government's authority to eavesdrop on Americans' domestic-to-foreign communications without a warrant. Read More

Hannity repeatedly distorts passage in Michelle Obama's senior thesis to suggest alumni views on race are her own
In recent broadcasts of Fox News' Hannity & Colmes, Sean Hannity has repeatedly distorted a passage from Michelle Obama's 1985 Princeton senior thesis to suggest that Obama was asserting her own views when she wrote that "[i]t is possible that Black individuals either chose to or felt pressure to come together with other Blacks on campus because of the belief that Blacks must join in solidarity to combat a White oppressor." Read More

MSNBC's Witt asked Huckabee about Hagee's endorsement of McCain, but did not report Hagee's controversial comments
In an interview with Mike Huckabee, MSNBC's Alex Witt identified televangelist John Hagee, who has endorsed Sen. John McCain for president, only as an "evangelist" who is "based in San Antonio," and did not note Hagee's numerous controversial statements on such topics as homosexuality, Islam, Catholicism, and women. Read More

CNN's John King ignored McCain's "pander" on immigration
After citing "illegal immigration" as "the issue with which John McCain is weakest among conservatives," CNN's John King said that members of McCain's presidential campaign "say they will not pander to the talk radio community and that if there is there's backlash from that community, maybe independents will say this guy truly is a maverick, he truly is independent." But King did not note that McCain has reversed his position on immigration to more closely conform to the views of the GOP base. Read More

NBC News blog muses over underreporting of McCain loan issue; writers might start with their own network
A post on the blog First Read stated: "We've noticed today the [Sen. John] McCain/FEC stories -- that McCain very well might have to abide by spending limits before the GOP convention -- are starting to roll in. But why is this only now starting to get more traction, compared with all the stories about [Sen. Barack] Obama waffling on his pledge to accept public funds in the general?" Their question could be asked of Nightly News, which aired a report by Kelly O'Donnell that discussed McCain's criticism of Obama over public financing, but has yet to mention that McCain obtained a loan that involved public financing. Read More

NY Times uncritically reported that Bush said he was "focused elsewhere, like on gasoline prices" after he admitted he "hadn't heard" that gas could rise to $4 per gallon
In an article about President Bush's February 28 press conference, The New York Times uncritically quoted Bush saying the following in response to a question about the source of funding for his presidential library: "I, frankly, have been focused elsewhere, like on gasoline prices and, you know, my trip to Africa, and haven't seen the fund-raising strategy yet." The Times did not mention that earlier in the press conference, Bush said he "hadn't heard" that gas prices might rise to $4 gallon. Read More

NY Times and AP jumped on story of Catholic League's Donohue's criticism of Edwards, but mum on his criticism of McCain
Despite reporting in early 2007 Bill Donohue's criticism of John Edwards' presidential campaign for hiring two bloggers who Donohue said are "anti-Catholic, vulgar, trash-talking bigots," neither The New York Times nor the Associated Press has reported that Donohue blasted Sen. John McCain for accepting the endorsement of televangelist John Hagee. In a statement, Donohue described Hagee as a "bigot," and said McCain should "retract his embrace of Hagee." Read More

Garrett claimed Obama "denounced ... but would not reject" "Farrakhan's previous anti-Semitic remarks" but didn't report that Obama called them "unacceptable and reprehensible"
Fox News' Major Garrett asserted that, in a debate, Sen. Barack Obama "said he denounced [Nation of Islam leader Louis] Farrakhan's previous anti-Semitic remarks but would not reject them." But Garrett did not air or mention Obama's response to moderator Tim Russert's initial question about Farrakhan, in which he said, "I have been very clear in my denunciation of Minister Farrakhan's anti-Semitic comments. I think that they are unacceptable and reprehensible." Read More

Limbaugh falsely claimed Obama's statement on Al Qaeda in Iraq is "manifestly not true"
Rush Limbaugh falsely claimed that a statement by Sen. Barack Obama that "[t]here was no such thing as Al Qaeda in Iraq until [President] George Bush and John McCain decided to invade Iraq" is "manifestly not true." In fact, the 9-11 Commission found "no evidence" that contacts between Saddam Hussein's Iraq and Al Qaeda "developed into a collaborative operational relationship" before the invasion. Read More

Politico quoted McCain mocking Obama, neglected Obama's direct rebuttal
In a report on an exchange between Sen. John McCain and Sen. Barack Obama, in which McCain falsely suggested that Obama said that Al Qaeda was not currently in Iraq, the Politico left out part of Obama's response proving that McCain's suggestion was false. Read More

NY Times' Nagourney uncritically repeated Farrakhan, "most liberal" attacks on Obama
A New York Times article about possible attacks against Sen. Barack Obama in the general election reported that Sen. John McCain's aides said "their first line of attack would be to portray [Obama] as a liberal, and they have already begun pointing to a rating in The National Journal, based on his votes, of Mr. Obama as the most liberal member of the Senate." But among the "liberal" positions Obama took to earn the distinction of "most liberal senator in 2007" were his votes to implement the bipartisan 9-11 Commission's homeland security recommendations, provide more children with health insurance, expand federal funding for embryonic stem-cell research, and maintain a federal minimum wage. Read More

Savage: "[W]hy are there no queries being provoked about Saddam Hussein -- I mean, Barack Hussein Obama?"
Michael Savage repeatedly referred to Sen. Barack Obama as "Barack Hussein Obama" and asked, "[W]hy are there no queries being provoked by Saddam Hussein -- I mean, Barack Hussein Obama?" Savage continued: "If, after all, the arch-enemy of Iraq, his name was Saddam Hussein, isn't it logical that us stupid Americans would like to know why the man who would be president has a name that's similar to our -- to our enemy in Iraq, Hussein?" Read More

CBS' Reynolds left out key info undermining his assertions about Obama's response to Farrakhan, his church, and his patriotism
In his report on "who" Sen. Barack Obama "really is" during the February 28 edition of the CBS Evening News with Katie Couric, CBS correspondent Dean Reynolds left out information undermining or rebutting several of the assertions he made regarding Obama's denouncement of Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan, Obama's church, and Obama's patriotism. Read More

O'Reilly: No escaping "the similarities between what Hitler ... did back then and the hate-filled blogs, what they're doing"
On The O'Reilly Factor, Bill O'Reilly responded to a viewer's letter -- criticizing O'Reilly for a "lapse of judgment" regarding his statement that he did not "see any difference between [Huffington Post founder Arianna] Huffington and the Nazis" -- by defending the statement. O'Reilly said: "If you look back at what happened in Germany, you cannot escape the similarities between what Hitler and his cutthroats did back then and the hate-filled blogs, what they're doing now." Read More

"Offended" Buchanan stands up for "white males," claiming only "white males" died at Gettysburg, Normandy
After MSNBC's Tucker Carlson noted that Howard Dean reportedly said that the Democratic presidential field "looks like America," while the Republican field, made up of white males, "looks like the 1950s and talks like the 1850s," Pat Buchanan reported being "offended" by Dean's remarks and said: "[W]hat did white males do? OK, they were the only guys signing the Constitution, the Declaration of Independence, all the dead at Gettysburg, all the dead at Normandy." In fact, "nearly 2,000" African-Americans took part in the Normandy invasion, at least some of whom apparently died as a result, and at least one woman and one African-American were reportedly killed in the the Gettysburg campaign. Read More

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