On Meet the Press, host David Gregory allowed Rep. John Boehner to repeat the falsehood that, in Boehner's words, "we've already found" that 61 detainees released from the detention facilities at Guantánamo Bay are now "back on the battlefield." In fact, the figure, which comes from the Pentagon, includes 43 former prisoners who are suspected of, but have not been confirmed as, having engaged in terrorist activity. Moreover, even the Pentagon's claim that it has confirmed that 18 former Guantánamo detainees have returned to the battlefield has been questioned by experts.
Tom Brokaw did not challenge Sen. John McCain's false claim that under Sen. Barack Obama's health care plan, "[S]mall-business people who have employees without health insurance, that he is going to fine them if they don't have, have the insurance policy that they want, that Senator Obama wants them to have." In fact, while Obama has proposed requiring large businesses that do not provide health coverage to pay a percentage of their payroll into a National Health Insurance Exchange, small businesses would be exempt.
On NBC's Meet the Press, Tom Brokaw did not challenge Steve Schmidt's false claim that Sen. John McCain "called for the firing of Don Rumsfeld." In fact, the McCain campaign itself reportedly admitted that McCain did not call for Rumsfeld to be fired, or for his resignation.
On Meet the Press, citing a New York Post article reporting that Oprah Winfrey will not host Gov. Sarah Palin on her show before the presidential election, Tom Brokaw falsely suggested that Winfrey has hosted Sen. Barack Obama on her show during Obama's campaign for president. However, the Post article Brokaw cited itself reported that Winfrey has not hosted Obama since he began his presidential campaign and that Winfrey said she decided when she endorsed Obama not to use her show "as a platform for any of the candidates."
On Meet the Press, Tom Brokaw asked Al Gore if, on the subject of renewable energy, "Hillary Clinton reset this debate when she said there should be a summer holiday on the federal gas tax." But Brokaw did not mention that Sen. John McCain also proposed a gas-tax holiday or that one of his top advisers still touts the plan as "the best stimulus package we can have right now."
On Meet the Press, Tom Brokaw did not challenge Carly Fiorina's assertion that "[t]he principal reason that [Sen. John McCain] voted against the Bush tax cuts is that they were not accompanied by fiscal restraint." In fact, the reason McCain gave for voting against the tax cuts in a May 26, 2001, statement on the Senate floor was that "so many of the benefits go to the most fortunate among us, at the expense of middle class Americans who most need tax relief."
On Meet the Press, host Brian Williams allowed Sen. Lindsey Graham to crop an answer Sen. Barack Obama gave on a Midwest Democracy Network questionnaire about whether he would commit to public financing for the general election if his opponent did so. While Graham read the question and beginning of Obama's answer aloud, neither he nor Williams noted that Obama concluded his answer by saying he would "aggressively pursue an agreement with the Republican nominee to preserve a publicly financed general election," which the Obama campaign maintains he did before determining an agreement with the McCain campaign was unreachable.
NBC's Kelly O'Donnell asserted that Sen. John McCain "believes he's stronger" than Sen. Barack Obama "among Hispanic-Americans, especially because of his immigration stance, which nearly killed him in the Republican Party." But O'Donnell did not note that McCain reversed himself on the issue of immigration; he now says that "we've got to secure the borders first" and that he "would not" support his own comprehensive immigration reform legislation.
NBC News Washington bureau chief Tim Russert, who in February stated that "the story about Senator [John] McCain and lobbyists and ethics and money -- that continues," again ignored the issue of "McCain and lobbyists and ethics and money" on the May 25 edition of Meet the Press, despite numerous recent, related developments bearing on that issue.
On February 24, Tim Russert stated on NBC's Today that "the story about Senator [John] McCain and lobbyists and ethics and money -- that continues. It's been on the front page of several papers for the last three days. ... We have not heard the end of that discussion about Senator McCain." However, since that date, "the story" has not "continue[d]" on Meet the Press.
On Meet the Press, Tim Russert failed to correct Mike Murphy's false claim that James Rubin "mischaracterized" Sen. John McCain in a Washington Post op-ed. Russert said, "And there is an interview with James Rubin, as you know, from Senator McCain where he said that in time, we would have to talk with Hamas." Murphy replied, "Right. Well, but I think if you look, like many of us did, at the full YouTube of that, Rubin mischaracterized him in his op-ed. ... McCain had a lot of qualifications, if you look at the full context of it, which is not what Rubin paraphrased in that op-ed." In fact, Rubin did not "mischaracterize" or "paraphrase" McCain's comments, as video posted on YouTube shows.
Now that former Republican congressman Bob Barr has announced his candidacy for the Libertarian Party nomination for president, will NBC host Tim Russert invite Barr to be interviewed on Meet the Press, giving Barr the same platform to discuss his candidacy that Russert gave Ralph Nader?
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On Meet the Press, Tim Russert asserted that "many Democrats fear Republicans in the fall will string together an ad which shows," among other things, "[Sen.] Barack Obama with his hands clasped in front of him rather than holding his heart during the Pledge of Allegiance." However, the photo to which Russert was apparently referring appeared in Time magazine with a caption indicating it was taken during the national anthem, not the Pledge of Allegiance.