Media uncritically report McCain camp's assertion that Obama "voted against funds for American troops in harm's way"

››› ››› ERIC HANANOKI

Numerous media outlets uncritically reported the assertion by Sen. John McCain's campaign that Sen. Barack Obama "voted against funds for American troops in harm's way." However, none of these outlets noted that McCain himself has voted against legislation to fund the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, nor did they mention that Obama has voted in the past to provide funds for troops stationed in Iraq and Afghanistan.

In reporting on Sen. Barack Obama's August 28 speech to the Democratic National Convention, The Hill, Washington Post, Detroit Free Press, Minneapolis Star Tribune, Denver Post, Politico, New York Daily News, and CNN.com all uncritically reported the response by Sen. John McCain's campaign, which included the assertion that Obama "voted against funds for American troops in harm's way." However, none of these media outlets noted that McCain himself has voted against legislation to fund the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. Nor did they mention that Obama has voted in the past to provide funds for troops stationed in Iraq and Afghanistan. As The Washington Post itself reported in a July 19 article by media critic Howard Kurtz, "Obama has frequently voted to finance the war but was one of 14 Senate Democrats to oppose a war-funding bill last year -- after Republicans removed troop withdrawal deadlines -- saying he did not want to be 'validating the same failed policy in Iraq.' "

As Media Matters for America has documented, the media have frequently uncritically reported the McCain campaign's assertion that Obama voted against troop funding.

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