Following the resignation of Gen. Stanley McChrystal as the commander of U.S. forces in Afghanistan, the right-wing media have falsely suggested that Gen. David Petraeus, who will replace McChrystal, does not support the rules of engagement being used in conducting the war. In fact, Petraeus has repeatedly expressed his support both for the rules, and for the principal of prioritizing protection of civilian lives.
Media Matters has identified at least 62 recent instances of media conservatives defending BP, 38 of which occurred on the Fox News Channel, Fox Business, the Fox Nation, or the talk shows of Fox News hosts. There were at least 21 criticisms of BP's escrow account as an Obama "shakedown" or "slush fund," 10 attacks on President Obama for supposedly "demonizing" BP, 15 examples of conservatives deriding investigations of the company, 12 claims that environmental regulations are responsible for the spill, and five absurd conspiracy theories about the spill.
On Fox & Friends, co-host Steve Doocy and guest Corey Stewart, chairman of the Prince William County, Virginia, board of supervisors, falsely claimed that the county's controversial immigration law reduced violent crime and has never been altered. In fact, Prince William County's violent crime rates actually increased in 2009; the law was modified in 2008 to avoid legal challenges; and a University of Virginia study of the law shows that it has not led to a reduction in crime.
Numerous right-wing media have agreed with Rep. Joe Barton's (R-TX) claim that the BP escrow account fund designed to aid Gulf residents affected by the oil spill resulted from a White House "shakedown," despite the fact that the plan was "mutually agreed to" by both the administration and BP.
Appearing on Fox News and MSNBC to criticize the Obama administration's response to the oil spill, Rudy Giuliani attacked President Obama for taking vacations after the oil spill and the Christmas Day bombing attempt, stating that "if it had been President Bush," the media would have slammed him. In fact, Bush did remain on vacation after the 2001 shoe bomber attempt and was not criticized for doing so; moreover, Bush spent several weekends at the Camp David retreat in the months following Hurricane Katrina.
During Fox & Friends' coverage of responses to President Obama's Oval Office address, Republican strategist Frank Luntz featured a panel of California voters to air their opinions. The panelists frequently echoed talking points pushed by Fox news, about both Obama's speech and his handling of the oil spill.
On Fox & Friends, Steve Doocy and Stuart Varney falsely claimed Obama's proposal for a BP escrow account amounts to "seizing private assets" and letting the administration "run the money." In fact, the escrow account would reportedly be established through negotiations with BP and it would be managed by an "independent trustee."
Fox News and others are attacking James Cole, President Obama's nominee for deputy attorney general, by suggesting he is sympathetic toward terrorists due to his criticism of the Bush administration's approach to trying terror suspects. In fact, many of the policies Cole criticized have since been found to be unconstitutional, and his views are shared by numerous conservative scholars.
During an interview with Republican Senate candidate Sharron Angle (NV), Fox & Friends' Steve Doocy suggested that it is "misinformation" and "not true" that Angle wants to "get rid of Social Security." In fact, Angle's campaign website advocates "transition[ing] out" Social Security.
While discussing the Jones Act, Fox & Friends' Brian Kilmeade misleadingly referenced "our inability or decision not to use the rest of the world's offers to help us skim up the sludge." In fact, the U.S. has used cleanup equipment from other nations "and will continue to do that," according to Coast Guard Adm. Thad Allen.