CBS on Supreme Court's EPA Ruling: 5 Non-Ideologues Vs. 4 'Most Conservative' Justices

Reporting on the Supreme Court's 5-4 decision (PDF) that the EPA has a “statutory obligation” to regulate carbon-dioxide emissions from motor vehicles, CBS's Wyatt Andrews on Monday night avoided labeling those in the majority while describing those in dissent as “the Court's most conservative justices.” CBS and NBC led by championing the narrow ruling, but NBC's Pete Williams, as well as ABC's Jan Crawford Greenburg in a story a few minutes into World News, managed to avoided ideological tagging.

Andrews began his CBS Evening News story by stressing how, “in a hard slap to the administration, the Supreme Court ruled the EPA does have authority to regulate greenhouse gases as air pollution. Justice John Paul Stevens writes [text on screen]: 'The harms associated with climate change are serious' and that EPA's political reasons for inaction are illegal, 'arbitrary,' he wrote, 'capricious...or otherwise not in accordance with law.'” After not labeling Stevens or any of the four justices who joined his opinion, Andrews concluded by pointing out how “this was a 5-to-4 decision with the Court's most conservative justices dissenting. But you can still add the Supreme Court to the list of voices advocating action on global warming.”

The formulation employed by Andrews matched the WashingtonPost.com story (a version of which will likely run in the real newspaper on Tuesday) by William Branigan, who also didn't tag any of those in the majority while labeling the dissenters as the “most conservative” members of the Court:
“'EPA has offered no reasoned explanation for its refusal to decide whether greenhouse gases cause or contribute to climate change,' Justice John Paul Stevens wrote for the majority. Joining him were Justices Stephen Breyer, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, David Souter and Anthony M. Kennedy.

“Dissenting were the four most conservative members of the court: Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. and Justices Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas and Samuel A. Alito Jr.”
Kennedy may not be considered a liberal; but Stevens, Breyer, Ginsburg and Souter certainly are, so Branigan and Andrews could have noted how the Court's “four most liberal justices led the majority while the Court's most conservative members dissented.”

A slightly-longer transcript of the lead story on the April 2 CBS Evening News. Wyatt Andrews began:
“Ever since the administration came to power, the Bush EPA, the Environmental Protection Agency, has refused all regulation of global warming gases -- emissions from cars and power plants -- saying it lacked the authority. But today, in a hard slap to the administration, the Supreme Court ruled the EPA does have authority to regulate greenhouse gases as air pollution. Justice John Paul Stevens writes [text on screen]: 'The harms associated with climate change are serious' and that EPA's political reasons for inaction are illegal, 'arbitrary,' he wrote, 'capricious...or otherwise not in accordance with law.'”
Following soundbites from an unlabeled liberal environmentalist and advocates of emission laws passed by several states, Andrews concluded:
“This was a 5-to-4 decision with the Court's most conservative justices dissenting. But you can still add the Supreme Court to the list of voices advocating action on global warming. This was the Court saying to the administration 'do something.' Wyatt Andrews, CBS News, at the Supreme Court.”
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