On CNN's Out in the Open, Rick Sanchez and CNN contributor Roland Martin discussed Bill O'Reilly's statement that he was surprised there was "no difference" between Sylvia's restaurant in the Harlem neighborhood of Manhattan and other New York restaurants, even though Sylvia's is "run by blacks." Sanchez reported that during an "animated" phone conversation, O'Reilly denied any "racial intent" in his comments and described the story as "a hatchet job by Media Matters."
A Chicago Tribune article cited Barack Obama's statement, "Anybody gone into Whole Foods lately and see what they charge for arugula?" in an appearance at an Iowa farm as evidence that Obama has had more success among "wine-track" voters than among "beer-track" voters -- though arugula is grown by Iowa farmers and is available at grocery stores throughout the state. The article also noted "white zinfandel with an Obama logo on the bottle" available at one rally as purported evidence of Obama's "wine-track" affinity, though it could have just as easily highlighted "beer-track" anecdotes, including an event where Obama's face was on the label of beer bottles.
Discussing his recent dinner with Rev. Al Sharpton at the Harlem restaurant Sylvia's, Bill O'Reilly reported that he "couldn't get over the fact that there was no difference between Sylvia's restaurant and any other restaurant in New York City. I mean, it was exactly the same, even though it's run by blacks, primarily black patronship." O'Reilly added: "There wasn't one person in Sylvia's who was screaming, 'M-Fer, I want more iced tea.' "
Hardball addressed the so-called Jena Six case for the first time on September 19, but the report focused only on Rev. Jesse Jackson's reported comment that Sen. Barack Obama was "acting like he's white" in his response to the matter. By contrast, the same edition of Hardball spent nearly 14 minutes on the O.J. Simpson case. The September 20 edition of Hardball featured no coverage of the Jena Six despite a thousand-plus march in Jena that day.
On Hardball, during a discussion of a sexual-harassment lawsuit against Isiah Thomas, Armstrong Williams asserted, "I think sometimes guys use it [the word "bitch"], like, let's say, for Isiah Thomas, if the woman did spurn his advances and if she found him offensive and did not give him the kind of attention that he's accustomed to getting from women, because he's supposed to be the celebrated athlete and not president of the New York Knicks, then he referred to her as a B, because he did not get her way. Still, he's implying here she's a tough broad."
On his radio show, Rush Limbaugh asserted: "Three weeks ago, you had Jim Clyburn of the Congressional Black Caucus saying, 'You know, if this report is good, it presents problems for us,' meaning the Democrat [sic] Party." In fact, Clyburn did not say that good news from Iraq is bad news for Democrats in electoral terms, but rather that a recommendation from Gen. David Petraeus against withdrawal would impede Democrats' efforts to garner support in Congress for legislation to begin withdrawal. And while Limbaugh identified Clyburn merely as "of the Congressional Black Caucus," Clyburn is also House majority whip, the third-highest position in the House.
Despite widespread reporting on the reconstruction in the Gulf Coast, the media have largely ignored reports that Mississippi Republican Gov. Haley Barbour has used waivers to redirect funds designated for low- to moderate-income Katrina victims.
In the only coverage that CNN has given to Tucker Carlson's August 28 comments, Jeanne Moos said of Sen. Larry Craig's arrest during an investigation of "lewd conduct": "It's causing commentators to tell personal stories you'd never expect. MSNBC's Tucker Carlson described how he was once bothered in a men's room." Moos then aired a brief clip of Carlson explaining how he responded to being "bothered": "I went back with someone I knew and grabbed the guy by the -- you know, and grabbed him, and ... [h]it him against the stall with his head, actually!"