Issues ››› Elections
  • Predicting McCain will attack Obama over public financing, CNN's Crowley did not report that McCain may be breaking the law

    ››› ››› MATT GERTZ

    On CNN's American Morning, reporting on Sen. Barack Obama's decision to opt out of public financing for the general election, Candy Crowley asserted that "you can expect that [Sen. John McCain] will hit Obama on two scores: One, you went back on what you said you would do; and two, this is not how to reform Washington." But Crowley did not report that McCain may actually be breaking campaign finance law.

  • Hannity twice referred to Obama as the "No. 1 radical liberal in the Senate"


    On Hannity & Colmes, Sean Hannity twice called Sen. Barack Obama the "No. 1 radical liberal in the Senate," failing to note that the National Journal vote ranking to which he was referring -- which said nothing about Obama being "radical" -- was based on a subjective selection of Senate votes by the magazine's staff, or that a more comprehensive examination of Senate votes produced a different result.

  • Chicago Tribune repeated baseless suggestion that Obama attacked McCain's age, linked comment to 2000 smears of McCain

    ››› ››› LILY YAN

    The Chicago Tribune juxtaposed smears on Sen. John McCain in 2000 with Sen. Barack Obama's May 8 comment that McCain was "losing his bearings" without noting the context of Obama's remarks that would have made clear that the Tribune was advancing a false comparison. Obama made the remark in response to an attack by McCain and was accusing McCain of violating his pledge to avoid negative campaigning.

  • Monica Crowley asserted Hillary Clinton "will cut off your manhood"


    Referring to a New York Times article headlined "Those Loyal to the Clintons Take Note of Who Was Not," Monica Crowley claimed that those who reportedly spoke to the Times did so "only on the condition of anonymity, because they also do not want to end up in cement shoes." Crowley also described Hillary Clinton's purported treatment of someone who is, in Crowley's words, "backing the 'hope' guy": "[I]t will be too bad for you because girlfriend will cut you. She will strap you into the electric chair. Then she will waterboard you. Then she will slowly and methodically pull off each one of your toenails. Then she will deprive you of sleep by blasting 'The Best of the '80s Hair Bands' at you, and then she will cut off your manhood, and then she will throw the switch."

  • AP gets "Bronze" in Worst Person for calling Obama "inexperienced in foreign affairs"

    ››› ››› MEREDITH ADAMS

    MSNBC's Keith Olbermann awarded the "Bronze" to the Associated Press in his nightly Worst Person in the World segment for calling Sen. Barack Obama "inexperienced in foreign affairs" in a June 5 news analysis. Calling the analysis a "really slanted piece," Olbermann said: "When the AP starts taking sides and starts reading like The Washington Times, or The Nation, we're all in a lot of trouble."

  • Wash. Post editorial ignored McCain's hedging on general election public financing

    ››› ››› MATT GERTZ

    The Washington Post falsely suggested in an editorial that, in contrast with Sen. Barack Obama, Sen. John McCain has said definitively that he will accept public financing for the general election. In fact, in recent interviews with ABC News and USA Today, McCain did not give a definitive answer. According to USA Today, McCain "said he has not decided whether to accept about $85 million in public financing for the fall campaign."

  • Echoing McCain, NY Times' Harwood falsely suggested Obama and Clinton proposed "government-run health care"

    ››› ››› ERIC HANANOKI

    The New York Times' John Harwood wrote that Sen. John McCain "prevailed over a field of Republicans who almost unanimously shared his support for the Iraq war, embrace of President Bush's tax cuts, skepticism toward government-run health care and opposition to abortion rights," while Sen. Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton "both staked out opposite ground from Mr. McCain." But neither Obama nor Clinton has proposed "government-run health care"; the Times has previously pointed out that McCain has "inaccurately described Obama's and Clinton's health care proposals" by likening them to "government-run health care systems."

  • AP ignored Gates' support for diplomacy with Iran, reported Obama is "inexperienced in foreign affairs"

    ››› ››› MATT GERTZ

    In an article discussing Sen. Barack Obama's and Sen. John McCain's positions on direct diplomacy with Iran, the AP reported that "Condoleezza Rice, a key player for eight years in the Bush administration's strategy to try to isolate Iran, told AIPAC on Tuesday that there is no point engaging Iran 'while they continue to inch closer to a nuclear weapon under the cover of talks.' " But, while noting that Madeleine Albright took a different position in a speech two years ago, the article did not note that President Bush's own secretary of defense, Robert Gates, has also reportedly said the United States should "sit down and talk" with Iran.

  • Chicago Tribune cited immigration reform as an example of McCain's "credentials as a maverick" but didn't note his flip-flop on the issue

    ››› ››› DIANNA PARKER

    The Chicago Tribune's Jill Zuckman asserted that Sen. John McCain "has a considerable record" as a "maverick" and cited his partnership with Democrats on immigration legislation, among other issues. But Zuckman did not mention that McCain reversed his position on immigration reform to appeal to Republican primary voters and no longer supports the comprehensive immigration reform legislation he sponsored with Sen. Edward Kennedy.

  • Morris baselessly claimed Rezko sold Obama property "for an amount that was substantially below its apparent market value"

    ››› ››› SIMON MALOY

    On Your World, Dick Morris claimed that Antoin Rezko sold Sen. Barack Obama a strip of land "for an amount that was substantially below its apparent market value." However, according to documents posted on the Obama campaign website, Obama paid $104,166 for the piece of property -- well above its appraised value of $40,500.

  • Brooks thinks Obama wouldn't seem to "fit[] in naturally" at an Applebee's salad bar -- maybe because Applebee's doesn't have them

    ››› ››› ANDREW WALZER

    On MSNBC, David Brooks asserted that "less educated" and "downscale" people "look at [Sen. Barack] Obama, and they don't see anything," adding: "And so, Obama's problem is he doesn't seem like the kind of guy who could go into an Applebee's salad bar, and people think he fits in naturally there." Applebee's officials have confirmed to Media Matters that its restaurants do not have salad bars.

  • Stoddard baselessly asserted Obama "doesn't think he's going to win Ohio and Florida"

    ››› ››› TOM ALLISON

    During The Hill's online video segment "Ask A.B.," A.B. Stoddard asserted: "[Sen.] Barack Obama has pretty much conceded that he doesn't think that he's going to win Ohio and Florida, two states that are necessary to becoming president of the United States -- usually." Stoddard offered no evidence to support this claim. In fact, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel recently quoted Rep. Robert Wexler, co-chairman of Obama's Florida campaign, as saying Obama "is confident he will win Florida," and a recent SurveyUSA poll shows Obama leading Sen. John McCain by nine percentage points in Ohio.

  • Will pundits who blasted Howard Dean in 2003 over troop-numbers response question McCain's fitness following his Iraq troop-level falsehood?


    During a May 29 campaign appearance, Sen. John McCain falsely stated that U.S. troops in Iraq "have [been] drawn down to pre-surge levels." As the Associated Press reported, "[T]here are 17 brigades in Iraq" right now, as opposed to the 15 brigades in place before the increase. In 2003, then-Democratic presidential candidate Howard Dean was criticized in the media for his response to a question about the number of active-duty soldiers, with Tim Russert and others questioning his fitness to be commander in chief. In light of McCain's troop-surge falsehood and numerous national security gaffes, will the media similarly question his suitability to be commander in chief?

  • CNN's Crowley, Fox News' Rosen cite McCain attacks on Obama's Iraq knowledge without noting McCain's misstatements about conditions in Iraq

    ››› ››› BRIAN LEVY

    CNN's Candy Crowley uncritically reported that Sen. John McCain is "continually suggesting Obama wants to surrender in Iraq without knowing what's happening there," and Fox News' James Rosen said, "Obama's absence from the war zone over the last two and a half years, McCain argued, has left the first-term senator divorced from the reality that now prevails on the ground in Iraq." However, neither Crowley nor Rosen mentioned any of the misstatements McCain has made that have raised questions about whether McCain himself "know[s] what's happening" in Iraq.