Matthew Balan was a news analyst in the Media Research Center's News Analysis Division.
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.
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Maja Czarnecka hyped in a Monday item for AFP that unnamed "experts" predict that Pope Francis "will have a hard time winning over hearts and minds" in Poland due to the legacy of Pope John Paul II. Czarnecka played up that "howls of criticism -- and even hate speech -- went up in ethnically homogenous, conservative Poland when the Catholic faithful saw Francis washing the feet of three Muslim asylum seekers." The journalist repeatedly emphasized the supposedly "arch-conservative" and "rightwing" climate among Catholics in the country.
CBS and NBC's evening newscasts on Thursday hyped Chelsea Clinton's planned speech introducing her mother, Hillary Clinton, at the Democratic National Convention. CBS's Vinitia Nair played up that Clinton "uses her mother's smarts and her father's flare." Nair trumpeted that "the girl named after a Joni Mitchell song, 'Chelsea Morning,' will finally have her night." NBC's Kristen Welker also touted the presidential daughter's "strong presence on the trail," and later claimed that Clinton is "already making her own mark on history."
CNN has clearly favored Democrats during their convention by playing more of their pre-produced videos during its first three days than they did during the entire Republican convention. So far, the liberal network has played 16 video montages and anti-Donald Trump featurettes totaling 47 minutes and 53 minutes of air time — all during their prime time coverage (8 pm Eastern to midnight) of the political confab. By contrast, CNN only played three of the Republican convention's videos, which added up to 14 minutes and 17 seconds of air time over four nights.
On Wednesday, ABC's World News Tonight and NBC Nightly News both played up President Obama's planned speech to the Democratic National Convention as a key moment to promote Hillary Clinton. ABC's Cecilia Vega touted the President as "her most powerful ally." NBC's Andrea Mitchell counted the chief executive as one of "Clinton's heaviest hitters" and spotlighted his "most critical moment" at the convention. Kristen Welker contended that "there is...no more critical speech than the one he'll deliver tonight."
On Tuesday's NBC Nightly News, Andrea Mitchell trumpeted the "almost universal praise" for Michelle Obama's speech at the Democratic National Convention. Mitchell played up how Mrs. Obama's words brought "people to tears about her husband's place in American history," and spotlighted how "even an unlikely source, Donald Trump...'thought she did a very good job.'" She later claimed that the address was "speech so compelling, some wonder whether, despite denials, she could become the second first lady to run for office."
Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump both spoke to the national convention of the Veterans of Foreign Wars, but CNN took clear sides in their coverage (or lack thereof) of their addresses. On Monday, the liberal network aired 19 minutes and 20 seconds of Mrs. Clinton's speech uninterrupted during the 11 am Eastern hour. The news channel didn't break away to carry any of Trump's speech during the 9 am Eastern hour on Tuesday. Instead, CNN went to correspondent Sara Murray, who reported live while the billionaire gave his speech.
Michelle Miller gushed over Michelle Obama and her seven and a half years as first lady on Monday's CBS Evening News. Miller trumpeted Mrs. Obama as "her husband's biggest advocate; a mother fiercely protective of her daughter's privacy; champion for healthy eating and staying fit — using her bare arms to redefine fashion; and her voice to comfort the country." Miler later spotlighted how the first lady's "climb has not always been up a crystal stair," but also played up how "now, with an approval rating of 68 percent...you'll see more of her personality."
Time magazine's Sam Lansky equated the ISIS-inspired terrorist attack in Orlando and Donald Trump's pick of Mike Pence as his running mate in an interview of Star Trek actor Zachary Quinto published on Thursday: "In the wake of the attacks in Orlando and Trump picking Mike Pence as his running mate, does it feel like a frightening moment to be a gay American? It does for me." Quinto replied, in part, "it's just a bleak and dangerous moment in our geopolitical landscape right now."
CNN didn't disappoint on Friday's AC360 when it broke the news about Hillary Clinton choosing Senator Tim Kaine to be her running mate. Jeff Zeleny stuck to liberal media's talking points about the vice presidential pick, labeling Kaine "more moderate than the liberal strain driving today's Democratic Party." He added that the Virginia Democrat's "views on abortion are far more conservative than most Democrats."
Lester Holt pressed Donald Trump, Jr. on Thursday's NBC Nightly News on whether his billionaire father can show his emotional side: "We...sometimes look for our leaders to be compassionate — to console us during national tragedy. We saw President Obama in Dallas a week or so ago. We haven't seen that Donald Trump. Is this a man that can cry? Can he emote? Can he wrap his arms around the country in times of crisis?" Holt later repeated his question on whether the elder Trump can cry.
On Thursday's Situation Room, CNN's Scottie Nell Hughes claimed that Ted Cruz's controversial speech at the Republican National Convention "killed conservatism" or "severely damaged it, at the very least." The Trump supporter outlined that "those that were...sort of, in the Cruz movement" caused an "embarrassment;" and that supposedly, Cruz "not only ended his career, but...ended the Tea Party...[and] everything that he represented" with his speech. Amanda Carpenter and Kevin Madden pushed back against her claim.
Wednesday's CBS Evening News used the recent heat wave in the United States to hype climate change. Mireya Villarreal featured a meteorologist who contended that "this is such a massive problem — and even if we were to completely stop all carbon emissions right now, we would still have a very serious situation. We've passed the tipping point." Villarreal underlined that "2016 is the hottest year ever recorded," and that "this season, fires are more intense; drought conditions are growing; and the arctic sea ice is melting sooner."
Wednesday's NBC Nightly News followed the example of CBS the previous evening in spotlighting the latest Republican presidential candidate to get in trouble with a liberal musician for using their music at a campaign event. Peter Alexander zeroed in on how "just hours after [Donald] Trump tried to cast himself as a winner, Queen complained the billionaire used the song 'against our wishes.'" He also cited how "George W. Bush had to 'back down,' after receiving a cease and desist letter from Tom Petty."
On Monday and Tuesday, CBS Evening News failed to cover the ISIS-inspired knife and ax attack by an Afghan refugee on train passengers in Germany. Instead, the newscast ended on Tuesday with a report on the celebrities who condemned Donald Trump for walking out to Queen's "We Are The Champions" at the Republican National Convention on Monday. NBC Nightly News covered the Islamist terrorism with a brief on Monday and a full report on Tuesday. ABC's World News Tonight finally covered the story with a brief on Tuesday.
Michelle Goldberg used a Tuesday item for Slate to tout Micah Naziri's open-carry protest outside the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio. Goldberg zeroed in on how Naziri's clothing "made him stand out...[as] an armed Muslim in a sea of often explicit Islamophobia." She later played up how "a group of burly men who called themselves Bible Believers" held anti-Islamic signs near the rifle-bearing demonstrator.
The Big Three networks' evening newscasts on Monday all spotlighted Hillary Clinton's speech to the NAACP's annual convention in Cincinnati. ABC's Cecilia Vega played up how "Clinton's supporters waging a counter-convention of their own — a pro-Clinton super PAC...linking Trump to former KKK leader David Duke." CBS's Nancy Cordes contrasted Clinton's NAACP appearance with a detail about the racial makeup of the RNC: "Only about 20 of the 2,500 delegates are black, which is on par with the party's percentage at its convention back in 1964."
Don Lemon attacked Milwaukee Sheriff David Clarke in a Facebook post on Monday over their sparring over Black Lives Matter and related issues on Sunday's CNN Tonight. Lemon lamented how Clarke supposedly was "displaying...exactly what so many fear about law enforcement." He added that Clarke's conduct was "probably not the best representation right now of...[those] who so bravely wear a police badge." At one point, Lemon went to a break early after the sheriff resisted his plea to "keep the volume down."
On Friday's New Day, CNN analyst and former FBI Assistant Director Tom Fuentes played up the possibility of fatal gun violence at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland due to Ohio's open carry law: "[The] law means that you're going to see people — and some of the websites have already said for their protest groups to show up and openly carry assault rifles on the streets of Cleveland....my fear is that if you have people show up like that, you could have another Dallas (sic) — biker bar shootout. One shot could lead to a massacre."
CNN's Kate Bolduan badgered the RNC's Sean Spicer on Thursday's At This Hour over Donald Trump passing on speaking at the NAACP's convention. Bolduan underlined, "Trump is polling at zero percent with African-American voters in Ohio...not showing up to speak...how does that help with that number?" The guest retorted, "The liberal media wants to talk about one particular group as if that's the only way to communicate....you don't ask Hillary Clinton about groups that she is refusing to speak to."
TVNewser's Chris Ariens reported on Wednesday that Luke Russert will be leaving NBC News, as of Friday. Ariens quoted from a statement by NBC Washington bureau chief Ken Strickland, who labeled the journalist "our dogged Capitol Hill correspondent." However, Russert made it clear from the very start of his career at the Big Three network that he had a liberal slant. Most recently, he gushed over the pro-gun control sit-in by congressional Democrats inside the House chamber in June 2016.