Bias by the Minute
Bias by the Minute
Early Friday, NewsBusters reported that CNN spent only one minute of airtime on the recanting of a former Ohio State University wrestler’s allegations against Ohio Republican Congressman Jim Jordan. After reviewing coverage of the original NBC article which leveled the claims against Jordan, NewsBusters found that there was a massive discrepancy in reporting.
Following the arrest of Republican Congressman Chris Collins, the broadcast networks once again showcased their partisan double standard when it comes to corruption allegations against members of Congress. Collins’s arrest on Wednesday on insider trading charges resulted in a deluge of coverage, over 18 minutes in less than 24 hours. But in 2015 and 2016, ABC, CBS and NBC buried the indictment, trial and conviction of two Democratic representatives, offering absolutely no coverage of the scandal surrounding Congresswoman Corrine Brown (convicted of fraud) and a paltry 68 seconds to Chaka Fattah (convicted of bribery and fraud).
During the 18 months of the Trump presidency, immigration has received more airtime on the three broadcast evening news shows than any other policy topic. The networks’ coverage has been relentlessly hostile to the administration (92% negative, just 8% positive), largely because these newscasts have framed nearly all of their coverage around the plight of those adversely affected by the administration’s enforcement agenda, and have virtually ignored law enforcement or anyone harmed by illegal immigration.
In just three nights (July 16-July 18), CNN swamped their primetime shows with over 7 hours of coverage – almost all of it critical – of Donald Trump’s Helsinki Summit with Vladimir Putin, including CNN’s hosts and guests speculating that Trump had been compromised by the Russian president and committed treason.
The 17-year-long war in Afghanistan continues, with nearly 15,000 U.S. troops currently deployed to support the fight against Taliban and ISIS forces, but you’d barely know it from watching any of the three broadcast network evening newscasts. The three newscasts combined have aired barely 32 minutes on the war this year, or a paltry one-third of one percent of their total evening news airtime.
Outraged anchors and correspondents at ABC, CBS and NBC attacked the Trump administration for separating children from parents at the border as they overwhelmed their Monday morning and evening news programs with a massive 94 minutes of coverage on the detainment policy. Overall, in just six days of coverage (June 13 through June 18) the nets have flooded their broadcasts with almost three hours (176 minutes) of emotional segments that included pictures of crying children and accompanying anger from correspondents and pundits alike.
Network and cable channels couldn’t get enough of Michael Avenatti, granting Stormy Daniels’ personal attorney a whopping 162 interviews in the past 12 weeks (March 7 through May 30). But those outlets are now going to have to find a new pundit to embarrass Donald Trump with, as the judge presiding over the porn star’s case against former Trump personal attorney Michael Cohen has ordered Avenatti to stop his “publicity tour.”
The Media Research Center studied all broadcast evening news coverage of the President from January 1 through April 30, and found 90 percent of the evaluative comments about Trump were negative — precisely the same hostile tone we documented in 2017. But unlike last year, when the RealClearPolitics average depicted a slow but steady erosion in the President’s job approval numbers, the public has apparently warmed to Trump in 2018, even as the networks are as frosty as ever.
Despite the liberal media’s obsession with Special Counsel Mueller’s investigation, the most recent development in the case barely even registered on their radar. When a federal judge rebuked Mueller’s team and called their methods into question, network news gave the story conspicuously little attention. Across all of prime time evening news shows, ABC, CBS, and NBC spent a combined total of just 153 seconds on the judge’s comments.
Traditionally, the news media have demonstrated great interest in movies with social or political themes, but so far Chappaquiddick has been completely ignored by CBS This Morning, while NBC’s Today and ABC’s Good Morning America have each featured only a single segment about the film.
Since Sunday night, the liberal media have been haranguing network affiliate owner Sinclair Broadcast Group (SBG) for a new “must-run” promo that warned against “biased and false news.” The two have slammed it as Trump-backed “state-run TV” on par with the former Soviet outlet Pravda that's “chilling,” frightening” and “a really embarrassing moment for journalism.” A NewsBusters study examined the two cable networks on April 2 found that CNN spent 76 minutes and 42 seconds while MSNBC hyperventilated for nearly twice as long at 134 minutes and 42 seconds.
The news media’s obviously insatiable appetite for scandal news surrounding Republican President Donald Trump is sharply at odds with their aversion to covering such stories about Democratic President Bill Clinton two decades ago. From March 7 through March 25, the ABC, CBS and NBC evening newscasts aired 23 reports about various allegations involving President Trump, totaling 40 minutes of airtime. None of Clinton's accusers ever had that kind of media attention lavished on their claims.