Fox News' John Gibson claimed that "[t]here is pretty substantial ... opposition to amnesty among the general public, if you look at the polls." In fact, most recent national polls show that most Americans support Gibson's definition of "amnesty" -- a temporary worker program and a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants.
Glenn Beck claimed that there are three reasons that an illegal immigrant "comes across the border in the middle of the night": "One, they're terrorists; two, they're escaping the law; or three, they're hungry. They can't make a living in their own dirtbag country."
Fox News' Neil Cavuto failed to challenge House Homeland Security committee chairman Peter King's (R-NY) misleading claim that "Democrats voted" for a provision in the House immigration reform bill that makes illegal presence in the U.S. a felony. Cavuto also left unchallenged King's false claim that Alaska's oil reserves are "equivalent" to those of Saudi Arabia.
Fox News' Major Garrett claimed that Republican charges that Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid (NV) "sabotaged" a recent immigration reform compromise "took deeper root" when The Denver Post reported that New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson (D) "phoned Reid and advised him to kill the compromise the day it was announced." Garrett offered no explanation for his claim. In fact, rather than opposing the Hagel-Martinez compromise, Reid and most other Senate Democrats voted to advance it in the Senate.
CNN's Lou Dobbs allowed Rep. Peter King to advance a misleading Republican claim Dobbs himself had previously repeated on the program -- that Democrats bear responsibility for a controversial provision in the immigration bill passed by the House of Representatives that would make unlawful presence in the United States a felony.
A New York Times article repeatedly referred to conservative Republicans' support for "stronger border enforcement," but the article failed to note that the legislation backed by many conservatives and passed by the House would designate illegal immigrants as felons.
Washington Post columnist Dana Milbank described a Republican-sponsored amendment to reduce the charge for unlawful presence in the United States from a felony to a misdemeanor as "an effort to soften" the enforcement-only House immigration reform bill. In fact, Republicans sought to downgrade the criminal penalty in order to facilitate prosecution.
Just hours after the executive director of the Arizona Police Association appeared on The Radio Factor to voice opposition to an Arizona immigration bill that would make it a crime to be an illegal immigrant, Bill O'Reilly asserted on his television show that "the cops know" the bill would provide "a good tool for law enforcement to have."
Fox News' Neil Cavuto falsely claimed that "the vast majority [of Americans] seems firmly against giving rights to people who entered America illegally." In fact, most recent national polls show just the opposite -- that most Americans support granting undocumented immigrants some form of legal status in the United States.
Introducing a report on illegal immigration, Fox News' Brit Hume told viewers that "some unintended consequences" had arisen from "President Bush's proposal to give illegal immigrants a path to citizenship." Bush, however, has offered no such proposal and has refused to say whether he would support an "earned citizenship" plan with bipartisan backing in the Senate.
Several news outlets have uncritically reported GOP leaders' claim that Democrats voted in favor of the controversial felony provision in the Republican-sponsored House immigration bill. But while House Democrats rejected an amendment reducing the charge for unlawful presence in the United States from a felony to a misdemeanor, they made clear at the time that their votes were consistent with their opposition to any criminal penalties for illegal U.S. presence.
Michael Savage referred to the woman who alleged she was raped at a party attended by members of the Duke University lacrosse team as a "Durham dirt-bag" and "dirty, verminous black stripper" because, according to Savage, she "lied when she said she was raped at a party." Savage added that "[t]his is the radical, feminist, lesbian agenda being acted out on our campuses in a witch-hunt manner against these white boys, very much like the socialist communist agenda being acted out on the American stage by the extras called the illegal aliens," whom he also referred to as "brown supremacists."
On his nationally syndicated radio show, Bill O'Reilly claimed that on the April 11 edition of Fox News' The O'Reilly Factor, guest Charles Barron, a New York City councilman, had revealed the "hidden agenda" behind the current immigration debate. O'Reilly told his listeners: "[T]he bottom line is Charles Barron said last night is there is a movement in this country to wipe out 'white privilege' and to have the browning of America." But in the April 11 interview, Barron at no point claimed that he and other advocates for immigrant rights are motivated by a desire to force white Americans into the minority -- despite O'Reilly's repeated efforts to provoke such an acknowledgment.
Echoing a similar suggestion in a recent Saturday Night Live skit, Ann Coulter stated that the United States should "throw out the illegals who are here," but not before "hir[ing] illegal immigrants" to "build a wall" along the Mexican border. When Bill O'Reilly suggested Coulter was "being sarcastic" about hiring illegal immigrants to build the wall, Coulter responded: "No. It's cheap labor."
The American Family Association's Don Wildmon, Fred Jackson, and Ed Vitagliano claimed the "mainstream media" have a "vested interest" in promoting recent nationwide immigrant rights rallies: to swell Democratic voter rolls and, ultimately, "to weaken the Red States."