Globe's Kranish uncritically reported McCain statement that Obama didn't vote to condemn MoveOn for ad

››› ››› MATT GERTZ

The Boston Globe's Michael Kranish stated that Sen. John McCain "criticized [Sen. Barack] Obama for not voting for a resolution condemning the antiwar group MoveOn.org for a newspaper ad calling the top US commander in Iraq, General David Petraeus, 'General Betray Us.' " But Kranish did not note that Obama did vote for a separate amendment that condemned the ad, as well as other attacks on past and present members of the armed forces.

In a July 21 post to the Boston Globe blog Political Intelligence, staff writer Michael Kranish reported that Sen. John McCain "criticized [Sen. Barack] Obama for not voting for a resolution condemning the antiwar group MoveOn.org for a newspaper ad calling the top US commander in Iraq, General David Petraeus, 'General Betray Us.' " But Kranish did not note that, while Obama was not present for the vote on an amendment by Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) that, in the words of the amendment, "repudiate[s] the unwarranted personal attack on General Petraeus by the liberal activist group Moveon.org," Obama did vote for a separate amendment offered by Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-CA) that condemned the ad, as well as other attacks on past and present members of the armed forces. Kranish also did not note that McCain voted against the Boxer amendment.

As Media Matters for America documented, the Boxer amendment "strongly condemn[ed] attacks on the honor, integrity, and patriotism of any individual who is serving or has served honorably in the United States Armed Forces, by any person or organization." The amendment stated of the MoveOn.org ad: "On September 10, 2007, an advertisement in the New York Times was an unwarranted personal attack on General Petraeus, who is honorably leading our Armed Forces in Iraq and carrying out the mission assigned to him by the President of the United States." It also criticized Republican-backed attacks on Sen. John Kerry's (D-MA) military service, as well as attacks on Vietnam veteran and former Sen. Max Cleland (D-GA). Fifty senators, including Obama, voted in support of the measure, while 47, including McCain, voted against. As Media Matters noted, under an agreement reached by the Senate leadership, a cloture vote and a vote on final passage were combined for this and other Iraq-related amendments, meaning that the amendment needed 60 votes to pass.

From Kranish's July 21 Political Intelligence post:

Campaigning in Portland this afternoon with Senators Susan Collins Olympia Snowe, McCain pledged to end US dependence on foreign oil, saying it is a national security issue because some of the billions spent on oil ends up in the hands of terrorists.

He criticized Obama for not voting for a resolution condemning the antiwar group MoveOn.org for a newspaper ad calling the top US commander in Iraq, General David Petraeus, "General Betray Us."

And McCain continued assaulting Obama's record of not supporting the surge of additional troops to Iraq, a strategy that McCain championed and that observers say has helped drive down violence.

"I'm proud that I was right," McCain said. "....That's what judgment is all about. That's why I'm qualified to lead."

Network/Outlet
Boston Globe
Person
Michael Kranish
Stories/Interests
Barack Obama, John McCain, 2008 Elections
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