On CBS' The Early Show, co-host Harry Smith allowed Mary Matalin to tout new White House chief of staff Joshua Bolten's "extraordinary credentials, credibility and experience, and relationships on the Hill with his work" as director of the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) without ever informing viewers that as OMB director, Bolten oversaw the 2006 budget, which the White House predicts will produce the largest deficit ever.
Robert D. Novak claimed that "Bush has explained that he has not vetoed any spending bills because they [Congress] generally follow his overall limits even though individual earmarks are unacceptably high." Bush, however, has stated in unqualified language that Congress has "met those targets" he has set for spending and has declared his willingness to veto "if they overspend," despite the fact that Congress has -- on at least one occasion -- exceeded Bush's limit by billions of dollars.
Fox News falsely reported the White House claim that President Bush has never vetoed a bill "because Congress has always stayed below his spending limit." In fact, Bush signed the 2005 transportation bill, which cost $286.4 billion, after initially threatening to reject any bill that cost more than $256 billion.
A February 23 Wall Street Journal editorial bemoaned what it called "a $1 billion tax hike for roads and transit projects" proposed by Virginia's GOP senators, whom it accused of spending "like crazy on social services and schools," leaving the state's highways underfunded. In fact, in recent years, Virginia's spending on schools and social welfare has stayed below the national average, and in some cases, ranks among the lowest in the country.
Fox News' Brian Wilson falsely reported that legislation enacting nearly $40 billion in budget cuts, from programs including federal student loans and Medicaid, "passed along party lines." In fact, 13 Republicans joined all 200 Democrats and one independent in voting against the measure.
Major newspapers and broadcast and cable TV news largely ignored a peaceful religious protest against budget cuts to social programs in which more than 100 people were arrested. A search of the Nexis "major newspapers" database -- which contains 87 newspapers -- turned up only 10 mentions of the event.