Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Media Matters Daily Summary 11-10-09

Huck PAC -- which Huckabee promoted on Fox News -- now soliciting donations for campaigns against Democrats
On two Fox News shows in October, Fox News host Mike Huckabee directed viewers to "go to balancecutsave.com," urging them to sign a petition telling Congress to "balance the budget," "cut their spending," and "save American families"; however, balancecutsave.com redirects visitors to Huckabee's political action committee, which financially supports Republican candidates and also pays Huckabee's daughter's salary. Subsequently, Huck PAC apparently emailed petition signers -- who were required to provide an email address in order to sign the "balancecutsave" petition -- "newsletters" urging political action on behalf of Republican-backed candidates and soliciting donations for campaigns against Democrats who voted for health care reform. Read More

Quick fact: Washington Times claims "official" "price tag" for House health care bill is $1.1 trillion
In a story about "fuzzy math" on "unfunded programs" in the House health care bill, The Washington Times said the "official" "price tag" of the bill is $1.1 trillion. The Times only reported on the Congressional Budget Office's estimate of the bill's gross cost, rather than its net cost, which CBO estimated was "$891 billion over ten years." Read More

Misleading Drudge headline suggests Holder to speak at "controversial" CAIR event
Linking to a Politico article, the Drudge Report ran the misleading headline, "Attorney general will speak to controversial Muslim civil rights group," referring to the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR). In fact, Attorney General Eric Holder is addressing a group named Advocates and Leaders for Police and Community Trust, which lists as its "participating organizations" not only CAIR but the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF), the FBI, several police groups, and the NAACP. Read More

Contradicting Fox VP, Murdoch agrees with Beck: Obama is a racist
Following Glenn Beck's description of President Obama as a "racist" who has "a deep-seated hatred for white people or the white culture," Fox News senior vice president of programming Bill Shine distanced the network from Beck's comments, reportedly saying that "Beck expressed a personal opinion which represented his own views, not those of the Fox News Channel." But in a recent interview with Sky News Australia, Rupert Murdoch, chairman of News Corp., the parent company of Fox News, said that Beck "was right" in his characterization. Read More

The GOP's looming (media) civil war
It's not easy to flip a congressional district that's been Republican since the late 1800s, but after being willingly hijacked by the right-wing media -- after getting steamrolled by Fox News' embrace of third-party candidate Doug Hoffman -- Republicans managed to hand Upstate New York's 23rd District to Democrats last week. And they did it just in time for the newly elected Democrat to help (barely) push health care reform through the House of Representatives during Saturday night's historic vote. Read More

Quick fact: Beck guest host Gray baselessly claims there were "700,000 to a million" participants in 9-12 rally in DC
While guest hosting Glenn Beck's nationally syndicated radio show, Pat Gray claimed that "700,000 to a million" participated in the 9-12 March on Washington. Gray's baseless claim echoed numerous conservative media figures, but a D.C. Fire Department official estimated 9-12 March crowds at 60,000 to 75,000 people. Read More

Murdoch's denial belied by Fox News' repeated comparisons of Obama to Stalin
In an interview with Australia's Sky News, News Corp. chairman Rupert Murdoch falsely claimed that Fox News hosts had not "likened" President Obama to Josef Stalin. In fact, Fox News hosts and contributors have repeatedly drawn comparisons between Stalin and members of the Obama administration, including Obama himself, and have also compared Stalin's policies to Obama's policies. Read More

Quick fact: Beck fill-in Napolitano forwards false claim that the government could "even put you in jail" if you fail to purchase insurance under health care bill
Filling in for Glenn Beck, Fox News judicial analyst Andrew Napolitano falsely claimed that under the House health care reform bill, the government could "even put you in jail" if you fail to purchase insurance. Read More

Quick fact: FNC senior judicial analyst Judge Napolitano claims "unfunded" health care bill "add[s]...another trillion"
While discussing the current economic situation on Glenn Beck and referencing the House health care bill, Fox News senior judicial analyst Judge Andrew Napolitano claimed that "the government wants to add...another trillion in healthcare, unfunded healthcare." Read More

Quick fact: On Dobbs, Politico's Gordon falsely claimed Dunn said she looked to Mao's "words for guidance"
Politico's Craig Gordon falsely claimed that Anita Dunn said she looked to Mao's "words for guidance." Read More

Fox News lets Breaux discuss health care reform without revealing he is a health care lobbyist
Fox News correspondent Carl Cameron failed to disclose that former Sen. John Breaux (D-LA), who Cameron said "warns Democratic leaders now that trying too much too fast could backfire and undermine achievable [health care] reforms," has lobbied Congress this year about health reform for the trade group Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA). This is part of a pattern on Fox: On several occasions, Fox News contributor Newt Gingrich has been provided a forum to attack health care reform without disclosing that he reportedly profits from an organization that receives annual membership fees from health insurance companies. Read More

Quick fact: Hannity cites Morris' false claim that jail is a penalty for failure to buy insurance under health bill
Sean Hannity falsely claimed that Americans face jail time as a penalty for failure to buy insurance under the House health care bill. Read More

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