Matthew Balan

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Contributing Writer


Matthew Balan was a news analyst at Media Research Center from February 2007 until February 2017. Previously, he worked for the Heritage Foundation from 2003 until 2006, and for Human Life International in 2006. He is an alumnus of the University of Delaware.

Latest from Matthew Balan

ABC, CBS, and NBC have largely punted in covering the protests against the leftist government in Venezuela. Since Monday, only NBC Nightly News has devoted a full report on the demonstrations in the South American country. Altogether, NBC has aired just over two minutes of reporting on the story. Brian Williams also stood out for explicitly mentioning the political ideology of the regime: "Many...are feeling increasingly let down by the socialist government." [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]

The network's Big Three competitors trail far behind in their coverage, with CBS only mentioning the protests during a 24-second news brief on Wednesday's CBS This Morning. The network's evening newscast, CBS Evening News, has yet to cover the story. ABC has devoted three news briefs on its morning and evening newscasts since Wednesday, for a total of 52 seconds of air time.


On Friday, the Washington Post predictably depicted a Catholic hospital chaplain as the aggressor, after the priest denied an ailing, openly-homosexual patient Communion and the Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick. The liberal newspaper's Metro-section report on the controversy came less than a week after the section's former editor blasted a Virginia Catholic priest for dissolving his parish's Boy Scout troop over their new pro-LGBT membership policy.

Reporter Michelle Boorstein picked up on the scoop from "America's Leading Gay News Source," the Washington Blade, and hyped how "a Catholic chaplain at MedStar Washington Hospital Center stopped delivering a 63-year-old heart attack patient Communion prayers and last rites after the man said he was gay, the patient said Wednesday, describing a dramatic bedside scene starting with him citing Pope Francis and ending with him swearing at the cleric."


Left-wing activist turned CNN host Van Jones ran to John Kerry's defense on Wednesday's Crossfire, after co-host Newt Gingrich slammed Kerry as "delusional" for recently hyping climate change as "the world's most fearsome weapon of mass destruction." Jones retorted, "It's not delusional to focus on climate disruption. It's delusional not to."

Moments earlier, the former Obama green jobs czar himself made a doom-and-gloom prediction about the hypothetical effects of what he labeled "climate disruption:" [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]


NBC can't seem to keep its left-leaning slant out of its coverage of the Winter Olympics. One day after playing up Stalin's "palace for the people" in Moscow's metro system, the Big Three network's spotlighted how an American freestyle skier is living an "alternative lifestyle" – for being married at 23 and having a young daughter.

Correspondent Skyler Wilder underlined how David Wise, who won the gold medal in the half pipe on Tuesday, is "mature far beyond his years....At such a young age, Wise has the lifestyle of an adult. He wears a Baby Bjorn baby carrier around the house." Twenty-three is "such a young age?" Perhaps the network is following ObamaCare's definition of "children", which includes those aged 18 to 26.


During NBC's Saturday coverage of the Winter Olympics, former NBC Nightly News anchor Tom Brokaw spun the United States' worldwide campaign against communism during the Cold War: "In Korea, Cuba, Vietnam, and space, the U.S. spared little to defeat communism – at times, it seemed like a national obsession." [video below the jump]

Brokaw's slanted take on recent history came mere days after NBC glorified the Soviet Union as "one of modern history's pivotal experiments" as they broadcast the opening ceremonies from Sochi, Russia.


Nancy Grace blasted Piers Morgan on the latter's CNN program on Monday for unsurprisingly forwarding gun control in the middle of a panel discussion on the controversial Michael Dunn case: "It's not really right for a Brit to jump up and start talking to us about gun control." Morgan shot back by condescending to the HLN host specifically and to Americans in general: "It seems like it's entirely down to a Brit, because your lot can't sort out your own gun problems."

Grace, who is no stranger to controversy, interrupted the British native before he could finish his pro-gun control rant, and threw the American Revolution and the Constitution at the CNN host: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]


Robert McCartney slimed a Northern Virginia Catholic priest in a Sunday column in the Washington Post for his decision to end his parish's relationship with the Boy Scouts for letting openly-homosexual youth to join as scouts. McCartney blasted Father John De Celles, pastor of St. Raymond of Peñafort parish in Springfield, for his supposed "diatribes against gay behavior, liberal activists and similar targets in his weekly columns."

The columnist later touted how "De Celles is in the minority" in disbanding his parish's Cub Scout pack and Boy Scout troop, and bringing in an alternative youth group that "discriminates against boys who refuse to hide their homosexuality," as he spun it. He all but called for discrimination against those who defend traditional sexual morals: "I hope and expect that those with narrow-minded views will be the ones who end up 'marginalized.'"


Kyra Phillips heralded Facebook's recent decision to add more than 50 gender categories on Friday's CNN Newsroom. Phillips brought on Rich Ferraro of GLAAD to boost the LGBT activist group's role in the social media website's left-wing change, and tossed softball questions at her guest: "Rich, you actually worked on this project with Facebook. So, whose idea was it, and why did it become an issue and an important move for Facebook?"

The anchor, who has a long history of promoting the social left's LGBT agenda and didn't bother to bring on a social conservative voice to respond to the story, made her feelings clear on the development to Ferraro: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]


ABC, CBS, and NBC's morning and evening newscasts have so far punted on reporting the strong critique of the Obama administration's "disturbing retreat from democratic practices" with regard to the freedom of the press, according to Reporters Without Borders. The U.S. fell 13 places in the international group's annual "World Press Freedom Index" for the federal government's "increased efforts to track down whistleblowers and the sources of leaks."

The organization spotlighted the controversial leaks from Bradley Manning and Edward Snowden as examples, but also included the Department of Justice's seizure of the Associated Press' phone records as a "reminder of the urgent need for a 'shield law' to protect the confidentiality of journalists' sources at the federal level." Fox News' Shannon Bream devoted a brief to the Reporters Without Borders report on Wednesday's Special Report: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]


NPR's Richard Knox played up a Pennsylvania judge's dismissal of a homicide case involving admitted euthanasia as "a sign that attitudes about end-of-life decisions are changing, whatever most statutes say," in a Wednesday item for the public radio network's health news blog. Knox euphemistically described the contoversial practice, as he asserted that "the [judge's] decision is the latest in a series of recent developments signaling a reluctance of courts and state legislatures to criminalize medical care that may hasten death."

The correspondent also slanted towards pro-euthanasia groups by including two quotes from a representative of an "advocacy group," while providing none from pro-life opponents.


CNN's Anderson Cooper did little to hide his outrage on his Tuesday program over a zoo in Copenhagen, Denmark killing a giraffe. Cooper confronted the zoo's scientific director and asked, "Doesn't the life of the animal itself have some value, rather than just it being part of your breeding program?" The host later expressed his dismay to Jack Hanna: "What he seems to be saying is that the animal itself doesn't really have any right to live."

Cooper later used language familiar to pro-life activists in defense of the giraffe: "At a certain point, the animals themselves should have some right to actually having a life." [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump] The anchor's pro-animal rights segments came just twenty days after CNN senior legal analyst Jeff Toobin ripped pro-lifers on his now-cancelled 10 pm Eastern program:


Fifty years to the day after The Beatles' first concert in the United States, NBC's Shawna Thomas could have been mistaken for one of the screaming fan girls at the Washington Coliseum. But instead of idolizing the rock and roll band, the network's White House producer shouted for joy over Michelle Obama's gown, which the First Lady wore to Tuesday's state dinner for French President Francois Hollande.

Thomas' Tuesday night Tweet in all capital letters is probably the most blatant example of Obama worship that has come out NBC, and that is saying something, given the Big Three network has raved about Mrs. Obama since the 2008 presidential race: [screen cap below the jump]


CNN's John Berman revealed on Monday's Anderson Cooper 360 that former Washington Post reporter Carl Bernstein is becoming the newest contributor to the cable news network. Berman turned to the liberal journalist for his analysis about the recent disclosure that Hillary Clinton once called Monica Lewinsky a "narcissistic looney toon."

Bernstein will be a good fit at the liberal network, which also just hired Obama supporter Michael Smerconish as a host. The Hillary Clinton biographer has a long history of slanting to the left. Here some of the most prominent examples of Bernstein's liberal bias from the archives of the Media Research Center: [video included below the jump for select quotes]


CNN president Jeff Zucker praised MSNBC guest host Michael Smerconish on Tuesday as he announced that the the cable news network would be giving the radio talk show host a weekly program: "We are thrilled to have Michael join CNN...At a time when the cable news landscape has become increasingly polarized, his independence and passion for reasoned dialogue makes him the perfect fit for CNN."

Smerconish's record, especially at MSNBC, actually does not point to independence, but liberalism. Here are the worst examples of the talker's slant to the left from the Media Research Center's archives: [video included below the jump for select quotes]


Monday's New Day on CNN hyped University of Missouri defensive end Michael Sam "making history" with his revelation that "I'm a football player, and I'm gay." John Berman gushed, "Six foot-two, 255 pounds – a big guy, Michael Sam – strong guy. But you want to see real strength? It's what he's doing right now." Berman later heralded Sam's revelation as "a landmark moment in confronting homophobia in professional sports."

Michaela Pereira played up how "it shows how much his teammates respect him that they didn't reveal this. They allowed him to come out with this, and say, this is my news – I'm revealing I'm gay. It's really powerful." However, Chris Cuomo, who recently acclaimed rapper Macklemore's pro-LGBT activism track, surpassed his co-anchors in his over-the-top reaction to the Sam potentially becoming the first openly-homosexual NFL player: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]


NBC whitewashed Russia's communist legacy in the lead segment of its Friday broadcast of the opening ceremonies of the Winter Olympics in Sochi. Game of Thrones actor Peter Dinklage narrated the network's lionization of the largest country by land mass: "Russia overwhelms. Russia mystifies. Russia transcends. Through every stage of its story, it's resisted any notion of limitation. Through every re-invention, only redoubling its desire to cast a towering presence."

However, Dinklage continued with a glorification of the Marxist-Leninist totalitarian state that slaughtered tens of millions of people between 1917 and 1991: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]


Thursday's CNN Newsroom spotlighted how President Obama "called for promoting religious freedom – quote, 'a key part of U.S. foreign policy," at the annual National Prayer Breakfast, but glossed over his administration's controversial birth control/abortifacient mandate under ObamaCare, which is being challenged in an ongoing Supreme Court case. The cable network still stood out, however, as none of the Big Three networks aired reports on Obama's speech.

John King zeroed in on the President's "very moving tribute to the Americans held in prison in North Korea and in Iran because of their faith-based beliefs." Instead of mentioning the HHS mandate, anchor Carol Costello played up the Democrat's encounter with a conservative politician as a supposed glimmer of hope for bipartisanship: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]


Columbia University Professor Marc Lamont Hill chided Piers Morgan on the British host's CNN program on Wednesday for his apparent lack of sensitivity towards transgendered author Janet Mock during a recent interview.  Hill acknowledged that Morgan was an "ally" of LGBT actvists, but claimed that his interview of Mock was akin to Mitt Romney's supposed gaffe about hiring women: "It's like when white people point to the number of black friends they have, or men talk about the binders full of women that they've hired."

When Amy Holmes of TheBlaze.com and conservative radio host Ben Ferguson challenged the left-wing academic for rebuking Morgan, Hill inadvertently exposed the ideological extremism of post-modern gender theory – especially its tendency to deny biological reality: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]


Piers Morgan was left aghast on his CNN program on Wednesday over "being viciously abused by the transgender community," in his words, over an interview he conducted with Janet Mock the previous evening. Mock, who claims transgendered status, expressed outrage on Twitter over the way Morgan handled the LGBT issue, which led to the CNN host receiving a "firestorm" of criticism from left-wing activists online.

Morgan brought Mock back on for a second interview, and repeatedly whined that he shouldn't have been "vilified" by the supporters of the author (whose book is titled "Redefining Realness: My Path to Womanhood, Identity, Love & So Much More") because he has been an "open supporter" of the LGBT activists' agenda: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]


Wednesday's Good Morning America on ABC ballyhooed the "breaking news" that Pope Francis shook hands with the real-life inspiration for the anti-Catholic movie "Philiomena" at the Vatican. George Stephanopoulos trumpeted the "moving journey for the woman portrayed by Judi Dench in the Oscar-nominated film" and her "remarkable story."

Cynthia McFadden slantingly gushed that "a woman, once shamed by the Catholic Church for having a baby out of wedlock, was invited today to meet Pope Francis," and mouthed the caption of Rolling Stone's recent cover featuring the pontiff: "The times – they are a-changin'." McFadden did her best to boost the movie and failed to mention conservative objections to the production. She also went out of her way to spotlight the United Nations' ideologically-tinged attack on the Church: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]