The hosts of the Sunday morning political shows neglected to bring up reports that Republican presidential candidate Ted Cruz failed to properly disclose $1 million in campaign loans from Goldman Sachs and Citibank during his 2012 Senate campaign.
Every Sunday morning political talk show on December 13 discussed Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump's anti-Muslim rhetoric and his call to ban Muslims from entering the United States, but failed to acknowledge that other Republican presidential candidates have similarly anti-Muslim positions.
From the December 13 edition of CBS' Face The Nation:
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From the December 6 edition of CBS' Face the Nation:
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On CBS' Face the Nation, Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump promoted the bogus theory that the wives and families of the 9/11 hijackers "absolutely knew what was happening" and were flown "back to Saudi Arabia" days before the attack as part of his call for extra scrutiny and surveillance of Muslim communities in the United States.
On November 21, Trump falsely claimed that he watched "thousands and thousands" of Muslims in Jersey City, New Jersey cheering the destruction of the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. The remark was rated as a "Pants on Fire!" lie by PolitiFact multiple times, but right-wing media rallied around Trump's misinformation. In the wake of the deadly December 2 mass shooting in San Bernardino, California that left 14 people dead and many more injured, several Republican politicians and conservative outlets have advocated increased profiling of Muslims living in the United States. On the December 6 edition of CBS' Face the Nation, Trump called for increased surveillance of Muslim families in the U.S., suggested that the family of the San Bernardino shooters was lying about not having forewarning of the attack, and was allowed to push his conspiracy theory about the 9/11 hijackers unabated, despite that fact that it has been known for many years that all but one of the hijackers were unmarried:
JOHN DICKERSON (HOST): You mentioned political correctness about Muslims. What the criticism of you is, that you are playing on fears that people have, and you're stoking them.
DONALD TRUMP: No, I'm playing on common sense. No, no I'm not playing on fears, I don't want to play on fears, I understand the whole world, and I understand. And I have Muslim friends who are great people, and by the way, they tell me there's a big problem. I'm not playing on fears, I'm playing on common sense. We have a problem. The World Trade Center came down, and by the way speaking of coming down, they put their families on airplanes, couple of days before, sent them back to Saudi Arabia for the most part. Those wives knew exactly what was going to happen. And those wives went home to watch their husbands knock down the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, and wherever the third plane was going, except we had some very, very brave passengers, wherever that third plane was going. Those wives knew exactly what was happening.
DICKERSON: You mention the families, going after the families, what does that mean? How would that work?
TRUMP: Well, at least I would certainly go after the wives, who absolutely knew what was happening, and I guess your definition of what I do, I'm going to leave that to your imagination. But, I will tell you I would be very tough on families, because the families know what is happening. Even in this last instance, I see everybody knew, so many people knew, they thought that this man and this woman, you know whether he was radicalized or how he became, they thought something was going on. Why don't these people report it to the police? Why wouldn't they report it to the police? Now, they said it was profiling. They didn't want to profile. Can you believe this? They didn't want to profile, even though they thought something very bad was going to happen.
DICKERSON: His sister said she didn't know what was going on, she was crestfallen for the victims here.
TRUMP: I probably don't believe the sister.
DICKERSON: You don't believe the sister, so you would go after her?
TRUMP: I would go after a lot of people, and find out whether or not they knew. I'd be able to find out, because I don't believe the sister.
Media Matters researcher Brendan Karet contributed to this blog
During the November 14 CBS Democratic presidential debate, Hillary Clinton explained that she doesn't "think we are at war with all Muslims," but rather that "we're at war with jihadists." She noted that President George W. Bush expressed a similar sentiment following the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. Right-wing media figures immediately condemned Clinton for not using the phrase "radical Islam," accusing Clinton of "giving Islam a pass" and likening her comments to the claim that "Hitler wasn't an anti-Semite."
From the November 8 edition of CBS' Face The Nation:
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Newly-elected Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R-WI) came under fire for accepting the position under the condition that he be able to spend time with his family, while also opposing a federal paid family leave policy. When he appeared on CBS' Face The Nation and ABC's This Week, both interviewers neglected to ask Ryan about his opposition to paid family leave policies, which benefit employees, employers, and the economy.
On October 20, Paul Ryan announced that he would run for Speaker of the House as long as a number of conditions were met, one being that he would not "give up [his] family" for traditional requirements of the job, such as "spending hundreds of days on the road raising money for Republican candidates." After Ryan's announcement, Politico noted that "when it comes to federal policies on family leave, Ryan has opposed virtually every measure proposed over the past several years."
Since announcing his candidacy for Speaker of the House, Ryan has been widely criticized for his hypocrisy on family leave. EMILY's List asserted that Ryan is "totally in favor of family-friendly workplace policies for Speakers of the House named Paul Ryan." Ellen Bravo, executive director of Family Values @ Work, issued a statement criticizing Ryan for having "refused to sign on to two bills that would provide Americans time to care for a loved one during a routine or even a serious illness, namely, the Healthy Families Act and the FAMILY Act. When Rep. Ryan had the opportunity to vote for paid time for federal employees to bond with a new child, he voted no - twice." Judy Conti of the National Employment Law Project told Politico "Paul Ryan is rightly concerned about his job's impact on his spouse and children ... yet [he] isn't willing to guarantee that all workers ... have the necessary tools to balance their work and family obligations."
Ryan made the rounds on the November 1 Sunday talk shows the week after the Speaker election. Meet the Press, Fox News Sunday, and State of the Union asked Ryan about his opposition to federal paid family leave legislation, noting his condition that he not give up his own family time. However, ABC's Martha Raddatz and CBS' John Dickerson of This Week and Face the Nation, respectively, neglected to question Ryan's hypocrisy, even as Raddatz mentioned his family as part of his hesitation to take on the job, and Dickerson asked Ryan what he told his children about the new position.
Paid family leave was brought up earlier this year in President Obama's State of the Union address. Economists have found that increasing paid parental leave could incentivize more women to join and remain in the labor force, boost the economy, increase wages, and keep families out of poverty and reduce their reliance on public assistance.
Following the October 28 CNBC Republican presidential debate, Fox News repeatedly championed the performance of Sen. Marco Rubio and his claim that Hillary Clinton "got exposed as a liar" during her Benghazi testimony for supposedly misleading the public about the cause of the Benghazi attacks. That allegation has been repeatedly debunked by journalists at numerous media outlets for disregarding the fact that intelligence was rapidly evolving in the immediate aftermath of the attacks and ignoring the possibility that "the attacks could be both an example of terrorism and influenced by outrage over the video."
Media outlets refuted Gov. Chris Christie's (R-NJ) claims that a lack of support from President Obama and increased scrutiny of police are leading to an increase in crime, explaining that "2015 is actually on pace to have near-record low levels of deadly violence against police." The so-called "Ferguson Effect," that Christie alluded to, is a right-wing media myth that has used flawed or cherry-picked data to link supposed increases in crime rates to the increased scrutiny of police following episodes of police brutality and has been roundly debunked by experts
Media outlets refuted Rep. Jim Jordan's (R-OH) baseless claim that Hillary Clinton deliberately misled the public about the cause of the Benghazi, explaining that his allegations disregarded how intelligence evolved in the immediate aftermath of the attacks and ignored the possibility that "the attacks could be both an example of terrorism and influenced by outrage over the video."
CBS' Face the Nation was the sole network news Sunday political talk show to ignore the claims of a former staffer for the House Select Committee on Benghazi alleging that the committee has turned into a "partisan investigation" with a "hyper-focus on Hillary Clinton."
On October 10, The New York Times reported that Bradley Podliska, who worked as an investigator for the Benghazi committee and was allegedly fired unlawfully, accused the committee of focusing "primarily on the role of the State Department and former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton" instead of leading a comprehensive investigation into the September 2012 Benghazi attack that killed four Americans.
CNN's State of the Union treated the story as breaking news and opened with an exclusive television interview of Podliska. In his CNN interview, Podliska said that the Benghazi probe "has become a partisan investigation," that has shifted its focus "to go after Hillary." On Fox News Sunday, Chris Wallace questioned Benghazi committee member Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) about the accusations made by Podliska. On NBC's Meet the Press, Chuck Todd briefly mentioned Podliska's accusations, noting that both Podliska and the Republicans on the committee "agree that Hillary Clinton was being targeted," and asked, "doesn't that hurt the committee?" And on ABC's This Week, Martha Raddatz asked Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) about Podliska's statement that "he was fired from that committee because he was told to focus too much on Hillary Clinton instead of finding out answers about Benghazi."
But John Dickerson, the host of Face the Nation, failed to mention this news at all. The only mention of Benghazi came from panelist Ron Fournier, who also neglected to mention this news story, despite bringing up both Clinton and Benghazi:
RON FOURNIER: Let me talk a little bit about emails if I could, which is her untrustworthy problem, and the Democrats are pointing at Republicans, and McCarthy is saying we just want to bring her down as mitigating for her. We have two sets of facts. One is, we know that the Republican Party did everything they could to destroy Hillary Clinton with Benghazi -- hyper-partisan Republican Party. And they caught Hillary Clinton red handed creating a improper covert server that undermined the Freedom of Information Act, that subverted legislative oversight, and jeopardized U.S. secrets.
Both of those things can be true. As a matter of fact, both of those things are true, but the Democrats try to use the one thing to mitigate them, and the Republicans try to use the other to mitigate them. And meanwhile, both parties think that - most voters think that the leaders of the parties are lying to them, because they are.
From the August 9 edition of CBS' Face The Nation:
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In an interview with Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee, Face the Nation host John Dickerson ignored new controversial comments from the former Arkansas governor and Fox News host about using the FBI or U.S. military forces to stop legal abortions throughout the country.
On July 31, The Topeka Capitol-Journal reported that Huckabee stated that if he was elected president, he would stop legal abortions from being performed. When questioned by reporters during two campaigns stops in Iowa if he would use federal troops or the FBI in order to prevent abortions, Huckabee stated he would resort to utilizing all means available to end constitutionally protected abortions (emphasis added):
In response to a question from the audience at the Pizza Ranch in Jefferson, Iowa, Huckabee said he would "invoke the Fifth and 14th Amendments for the protection of every human being."
Both amendments contain due process protections against depriving people of life without due process of law.
"Would that be a huge controversy?" the former Arkansas governor asked. "Yes."
But he argued that scientific advancements have now verified that unborn babies are human beings -- information he said wasn't necessarily available when the Supreme Court issued its 1973 Roe v. Wade decision.
"I will not pretend there is nothing we can do to stop this," Huckabee said at the event, where a Topeka Capital-Journal correspondent was present.
At his next stop, in Rockwell City, Huckabee answered follow-up questions from the correspondent, saying: "All American citizens should be protected."
Asked by another reporter how he would stop abortion, and whether this would mean using the FBI or federal forces to accomplish this, Huckabee replied: "We'll see, if I get to be president."
He said he would use all resources available to protect U.S. citizens.
On the August 2 edition of CBS' Face the Nation, host John Dickerson failed to confront Huckabee on his suggestion that he might order troops to interfere with women's reproductive health decisions. Dickerson instead focused on Huckabee's July 25 remarks comparing President Obama's negotiations of the Iran deal to the Holocaust. Watch the full interview below:
Amid widespread condemnation of Donald Trump from his fellow Republican presidential candidates following his attack on Sen. John McCain's military service, media are highlighting Republicans' collective failure to denounce Trump's past bigotry and xenophobia.