Ken Shepherd

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Contributing writer

Ken Shepherd lives in New Carrollton, Md., with his wife, Laura, and children Mercy and Abraham. Ken graduated cum laude from the University of Maryland in 2001 with a Bachelors of Arts in Government & Politics and a citation in Public Leadership. 

Ken worked for the Media Research Center from May 2001 to April 2016.

In his spare time, Ken enjoys karaoke, tennis, reading, and discussing theology or politics.

Latest from Ken Shepherd

Update: According to the Library of Congress website, July 28, 1868 was the day when Secretary of State William Seward "issued a proclamation certifying without reservation that the Fourteenth Amendment was a part of the United States Constitution." Todd told his viewers that July 28, 1868 was the day the amendment "officially became part of the U.S. Constitution" although Article V of the U.S. Constitution states that amendments "shall be valid to all intents and purposes...when ratified by the legislatures of three fourths" of the states, which in the case of the Fourteenth Amendment would be July 9, 1868.

Wanted: Better fact checkers for MSNBC.

For today's "Flashback" feature on the "Daily Rundown," anchor Chuck Todd misinformed viewers by noting that on July 28, 1868, the 14th Amendment went into effect.

In fact the amendment went into effect when South Carolina ratified it on July 9, 1868.

But not only was Todd off by 19 days, he selectively quoted a passage of the 14th Amendment that has some relevance to the debt ceiling debate:


If her gig at Time magazine doesn't work out, Jay Newton Small could always try working in Harry Reid's press shop.

She certainly knows how to butter up the Senate majority leader. Witness Newton Small's latest Swampland blog post at where she denounces House Republican debt ceiling plans as "histrionics" while forecasting a resolution to the debt ceiling deadlock that has Reid saving the day (emphasis mine):

During a roundtable discussion on the debt ceiling deadlock on his July 26 program, MSNBC host Dylan Ratigan, egged on by a former Durbin and Biden staffer-turned-lobbyist, argued that the bulk of the national debt was run up prior to the time President Barack Obama entered office, by Republicans:

With a post entitled "When Christianity becomes lethal," liberal theologian and Center for American Progress senior fellow Susan Brooks Thislethwaite took to the Washington Post's "On Faith" blog yesterday to indict conservative Christian theology as a catalyst for the terror espoused by Norwegian bomber/shooter Anders Behring Breivik:

Yesterday I wrote about the Washington Post's 40-paragraph July 25 puff piece on Nebraska abortionist LeRoy Carhart, who last December opened a clinic in Germantown, Md.

Today, the's "On Faith" religious news section features a link to the story, with the following teaser headline and caption [see screen capture posted below page break]:

Frank Schaeffer -- the embittered liberal progeny of the late evangelical Christian scholar Francis Schaeffer -- appeared on MSNBC's "Martin Bashir" program this afternoon where he availed himself the opportunity to spew forth more venom against American evangelicals, who tend to vote for conservative Republicans.

Schaeffer was ostensibly brought on to react to new polling data that show 56 percent of Americans believe it's important for presidential candidates to have strong religious beliefs, even if those beliefs don't square with the voter's personal views.

In the process of the interview, Schaeffer indirectly compared evangelical Christians to the Taliban as he slammed "faith-based politics" (emphasis mine):

Today's Washington Post provided a sympathetic profile for Nebraska abortionist LeRoy Carhart, who in December of last year expanded his practice to include abortions in a Maryland clinic about 30 miles from the District of Columbia.

"From abortion provider to activist," read the below-the-fold headline on page A1 of today's Post. " Physician is committed to doing late-in-pregnancy procedures despite threats."

Yet for someone who allegedly is the subject of numerous threats against his life, the Post only cited one credible threat from 20 years ago.

Under the sub-heading "From ashes, a mission," reporter Lena Sun noted that:

A poll commissioned last Thursday by the inside-the-Beltway political newspaper The Hill finds that "[l]ikely voters hold a dismal view of the news media, generally regarding reporters as biased, unethical and too close to the politicians they purport to cover."

Hill reporter Niall Stanage noted that the poll shows "68 percent of voters consider the news media biased" with "[m]ost, 46 percent, believ[ing] the media generally favor Democrats." What's more, fully 44 percent of voters polled "believe the media are too friendly with politicians."

Also of note, nearly 4 out of 10 of self-described centrists see the bias as skewed in favor of Democrats, while only 19 percent of moderates think the media favor Republicans.

For the full story at, click here.

For the second day in a row, CNN is doing its level best to avoid noting some interesting data from its latest poll that shows some 66 percent of voters favor the Republican-sponsored "Cut, Cap and Balance" plan.

The only mention of that fact on air is when guests bring it up and today the website is casting the poll's results as evidence that while Obama is losing enthusiasm among liberal voters, that the public at large is skeptical of congressional Republicans.

From a story filed at 1:01 p.m. Eastern by CNN's political unit:

As soon as the Senate rejected the "Cut, Cap and Balance" plan, shot out a biased Breaking News alert to e-mail subscribers that labeled the measure as one "favored by hard-line conservative [sic]" (screen capture attached below page break):


Halfway through the July 21 edition of "NewsNation," MSNBC anchor Tamron Hall brought on Time magazine assistant managing editor Rana Foroohar to diss a Boy Scout cited by John Thune (R-S.D.) on the Senate floor.

After Hall aired a clip of Thune reading the Boy Scout's letter admonishing senators to spend only what the government can afford, she and Foroohar set about to dismiss his concern as quaint but ill-informed:

Update: Our good friend Brian Maloney at Radio Equalizer was ahead of the curve with a post on July 14 about signals that Sharpton was joining MSNBC.

When MSNBC shuffled Ed Schultz up to the 10 p.m. slot they placed left-wing blogger and radio host Cenk Uygur (pronounced jenk you-gur) in the 6 p.m. Eastern time slot that Ed vacated as an interim host.

But Uygur has been curiously absent from his dinnertime perch since early July, with the Rev. Al Sharpton filling in but not explaining why Uygur was out. Yesterday MSNBC announced that Uygur had officially left the network and today the New York Times is reporting that Sharpton's hiring as a full-time host is "imminent."

The past is prologue, so a look back at Sharpton's wacky pronouncements to date should be instructive. We at NewsBusters have a full archive on Al Sharpton that you can find here, but I thought we'd highlight a few items that stand out.

"Does atheism need a pitch man?" is the latest "panel debate" at "On Faith," the Washington Post religion news-and-views blog.

Yes, a discussion question on a religion blog about whether atheists need a Moses to lead them to the Promised Land.

Leave it to the mainstream media!:

Conservative Republicans are divorced from reality while Democrats are governed by the facts.

That's the take Time's Alex Altman has on how the two congressional parties are addressing the looming debt ceiling deadline in his July 19 Swampland blog post, "The Fact Gap: Can Republicans Overcome Their Alternate Reality to Strike A Debt Deal?":

According to Chris Matthews, conservative House Republicans who are holding steadfast on resisting a debt ceiling deal that includes tax hikes are like the apocryphal bovine of doom behind the 1871 fire that destroyed much of Chicago (video follows page break):

Kicking off the NBC4 11 o'clock news last night, veteran Washington, D.C. anchor Jim Vance touted an exclusive interview he had earlier that day with President Barack Obama.

Vance then aired an excerpt of the interview, comprised of two softball questions. Afterwards, he informed viewers they could find the full interview at the station's website,

Unfortunately, the rest of the interview was just as disappointing. As you'll see, Vance practically portrayed Obama as needlessly inconvenienced by pesky Republicans on the debt ceiling issue and the economy at large.

[You can watch the full video in the embed below the page break]


While some leftist bloggers are positively delighted that the FBI has opened an investigation into NewsCorp regarding possible hacking of 9/11 victims' voicemail accounts -- dreaming of an existential threat to Fox News -- Time's Massimo Calabresi is perplexed as to what could justify the investigation other than political pressure (emphasis mine):

I can't begrudge the Associated Press for covering the conflict within the Kennedy clan about what to do with their iconic Hyannis Port estate.

But AP's David Klepper cranked the Kennedy nostalgia -- no, make that  worship -- up to 11 in his 27-paragraph story -- which I accessed via Yahoo! News -- on the family dispute (emphasis mine):


MSNBC "NewsNation" anchor and Texas native Tamron Hall was delighted to find that four Lone Star cities made it to's list of "The Next Big Boom Towns in the U.S."

"Forbes [magazine] says many of the cities on the list have some of the best job creation records in the nation," Hall noted as she introduced contributor Joel Kotkin, who authored the July 6 piece.

Kotkin identified the nation's new 10 boom towns, five of which are in states without a personal income tax (Florida and Texas) and one, Nashville, Tenn., where the state levies person taxes only on dividend and interest, but not salary or wage, income.

The mainstream media reluctantly started covering President Obama's Rev. Jeremiah Wright controversy roughly one year after Fox News's Sean Hannity alerted his viewers to the controversial preacher's "God damn America" rants in 2007.

But when it comes to the 2012 Republican presidential aspirants, it appears the media are determined not to be late to the game in vetting their (real or imagined) "pastor problems."

For example, Washington Post's online "On Faith" feature yesterday wondered if Texas Gov. Rick Perry -- who is thought to be mulling a run but hasn't made a decision yet -- should be "judged by the religious company" he keeps.