A Media Matters analysis found that since the day after President Obama's inauguration, broadcast and cable news figures have been stating that Obama's "honeymoon" is "over" or questioning whether it is, rendering the cliché all but meaningless. During this period, media figures have suggested Obama's "honeymoon" is "over" with respect to "some ... die-hard Republicans," the media, African-Americans, Cuban President Fidel Castro, "Republican critics of his economic recovery plan," and economists.
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Fox News hosted Republican strategist Danny Diaz, who criticized "Democrats and their union friends" for "pushing legislation like card check legislation" -- the Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA) -- at the expense of the economy. However, at no point during the segment did Fox News disclose Diaz's affiliation with the Workforce Fairness Institute, which is "[c]urrently ... focused on educating the public on the damaging effects of the deceptively named 'Employee Free Choice Act' or 'card check.' "
In purporting to "take a look back" at how the economic recovery plan "grew, and grew, and grew," Fox News' Jon Scott referenced seven dates, as on-screen graphics cited various news sources from those time periods -- all of which came directly from a Senate Republican Communications Center press release. A Fox News on-screen graphic even reproduced a typo contained in the Republican press release.
Moments after Sen. Barack Obama stated that Sen. John McCain "hasn't been a maverick, he's been a sidekick," Fox News displayed the following text for 51 seconds: "Obama: McCain isn't a maverick, he's a sidekick." Immediately after airing that text, it was changed to read: "Obama: McCain hasn't been a sidekick, he's been a maverick." The misquoted text aired for 51 seconds, and at no point did Fox News correct it or re-air the accurate text.
On Fox News, Carl Cameron reported that a McCain campaign ad "will attack the Obama campaign for having sent what it will call a small army of lawyers into Alaska to smear Sarah Palin." But Cameron gave no indication that he had sought any comment from the Obama campaign nor did he note that the DNC has reportedly said the assertion is false and that neither the DNC nor the Obama campaign has sent anyone to Alaska to do research.
Summary: Fox News' Jon Scott suggested that Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin can contrast herself with Sen. Joe Biden on Iraq because her son is "deploying to Iraq next month." But Scott did not note that Biden's son is also reportedly deploying to Iraq.
Purporting to describe the response by Sen. Barack Obama's campaign to Sen. John McCain's choice of Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin as his vice-presidential running mate, a Fox News graphic stated: "Obama Campaign Disses Palin for Small Town Origins." In fact, the Obama campaign challenged Palin's experience, not her "small town origins."
Fox news host Gregg Jarrett did not challenge the false assertion by U.S. Secretary of Energy Samuel Bodman that "[w]hen we had Katrina and Rita, the two worst hurricanes in at least in recent memory, in '05, some three years ago, there was not one case where we had a -- a situation with oil or gas being spilled in the environment." In fact, according to a 2007 report prepared for the U.S. Minerals Management Service, Hurricanes Katrina and Rita resulted in 124 spills from outer continental shelf structures with a total volume of more than 17,000 barrels of petroleum.
Discussing Sen. John McCain's criticism of Sen. Barack Obama for not visiting wounded soldiers in Germany, Fox News' Molly Henneberg asserted that the "Obama campaign originally said the candidate thought it would be, quote, 'inappropriate' to visit wounded troops as part of a campaign-funded trip, but later they said that the Pentagon said they couldn't go without media cameras." In fact, the Obama campaign did not say that Obama decided not to visit because the Pentagon barred media from accompanying him.
On Fox News' Happening Now, co-host Eric Shawn falsely claimed that, during his interview on CBS' Face the Nation, "General [Wesley] Clark said that Mr. [John] McCain does [sic] not serve in a wartime squadron." In fact, after Face the Nation host Bob Schieffer stated that McCain "was a squadron commander of the largest squadron in the Navy," Clark said, "But he hasn't held executive responsibility. That large squadron in the Air -- in the Navy that he commanded, it wasn't a wartime squadron," a reference not to McCain's wartime service in Vietnam, but rather to his time as commanding officer after the war.
Responding to Barack Obama's noting, in addressing controversial statements made by Rev. Jeremiah Wright, that his white grandmother had "uttered racial or ethnic stereotypes," Newt Gingrich said on Fox News: To reduce a 20-year relationship with a public figure to his grandmother is just wrong. It's emotionally powerful, but it's just wrong." Separately, Fox News' Brit Hume said of Obama's statement: "[S]ome may find it deceptive, but ... it was pretty clever."