The New York Times falsely claimed that Sen. Hillary Clinton "has always maintained that her support of a Congressional resolution authorizing the president to use force in Iraq was not an authorization to go to war." In fact, Clinton acknowledged at the time that the vote for the resolution could "lead to war," but she has stated that a vote for the resolution was not a "vote for" war, and that she expected the Bush administration to push for more weapons inspections in Iraq before resorting to war.
A New York Times article about a visit to Iraq by a group of House Republicans quoted House Minority Leader John Boehner saying, "Clearly what's happened over the last three months has been real success." But the Times article provided no details about the briefing on which Boehner claimed to base his assertion, and a previous Times article about congressional delegations to Iraq described them as "highly choreographed affairs" and reported that "[t]he Congressional Iraq tours rarely include chats with ordinary Iraqis."
Supporters of the Iraq war -- rather than waiting for testimony by Gen. David Petraeus and U.S. ambassador to Iraq Ryan Crocker on the effect of President Bush's troop increase in Iraq -- have engaged in a campaign to convince the media and public that progress is being made in Iraq and that the "surge" is "working." Media Matters has compiled some of the most pervasive myths and falsehoods advanced by opponents of withdrawal in service of the "surge is working" message, which many in the media have been complicit in perpetuating.
Two New York Times articles and a Washington Post article on a report by the Independent Commission on the Security Forces of Iraq did not mention that the report called on the U.S. military to reduce its "footprint" in Iraq because its presence there conveys an "unintended message" of "permanence" as "an occupying force."
Tucker Carlson quoted Michelle Obama, wife of Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL), from a recent interview with Glamour, saying of her husband and children: "We have this ritual in the morning. They come in my bed, and Dad isn't there -- because he's too snore-y and stinky, they don't want to ever get into bed with him." But Glamour left out a key word from Michelle Obama's quote; she had said, "They come in my bed, and if Dad isn't there ..." -- the addition of "if" turning her remark into a conditional statement that her children come into bed "if Dad isn't there." But Carlson went beyond Glamour's original error, asserting, based solely on the inaccurate quote, that "the Obamas do not sleep in the same bed, Mrs. Obama is saying."
A New York Times editorial criticizing presidential candidates' use of "bundlers" stated that "Senator Hillary Clinton [D-NY] has been burned twice lately by so-called bundlers," and made apparent references to Clinton bundlers Norman Hsu and Sant Chatwal. The Times went on to note that "[o]ther candidates in both parties have been similarly embarrassed" but offered no further details and made no mention of Alan B. Fabian, a Maryland bundler for former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney's campaign who was indicted last month on fraud and money laundering charges.
The New York Times reported Sen. Norm Coleman criticizing the Government Accountability Office's newly released progress report on Iraqi benchmarks for not including data regarding sectarian violence in Iraq from August. However, the Times failed to note GAO's David Walker's response to Coleman indicating that the GAO "asked [the military] for, but did not receive, the information through the end of August" and that even though military officials "were unable to give us the data through August ...we obtained their views for where the situation was through as of August 30th."
An article in The New York Times reported President Bush's assertion that withdrawing U.S. troops from Iraq would "embolden our enemies and make it more likely that they would attack us at home," without noting expert opinion that a U.S. troop withdrawal is unlikely to result in a terrorist attack on the United States.
New York Times reporter Sheryl Gay Stolberg repeated a common media practice of suggesting that the GOP's "social conservative wing" cares more about "ethics and family values" than others, and quoted Tony Perkins, the president of the Family Research Council, in support. Similarly, MSNBC's Chris Matthews asked Perkins about "conservative people like yourself, who are not politicians, but are men of the church, who believe in values, rather than election results." Neither noted Perkins' reported ties to both the white-supremacist Council of Conservative Citizens (CCC) and former Ku Klux Klan Grand Wizard David Duke.
In reporting on Sen. Larry Craig's guilty plea on disorderly conduct charges, the nightly network news broadcasts and The New York Times all ignored Craig's positions on legislation concerning gay and lesbian rights, including voting against legislation to ban employment discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.
A New York Times article, which reported on Fred Thompson's leadership of a 1997 Governmental Affairs Committee investigation into campaign finance irregularities, uncritically quoted Thompson saying of the hearings, "[T]here was no way that I was going to shield any obvious problems that our side had." However, according to a New York Times article published at the time, Republicans shut down the hearings before Democrats were able to introduce evidence linking Republican lawmakers to Triad Management, a fundraising group that Democrats claimed had skirted campaign finance laws.
In reports on a recent advertisement buy by Freedom's Watch in support of the Iraq war, media reports have failed to resolve the question of which members of Congress the ad buys are targeting, despite the apparent newsworthiness of the issue. For instance, The Washington Post suggested that the ad campaign is an attack on Democrats, a suggestion repeated by Time's Karen Tumulty; other reports have not even mentioned the issue; while still others have asserted that the ads target both Democrats and Republicans. However, according to analyses by war opponents, the buys target mainly Republicans, a charge Freedom's Watch called "propaganda by our enemies."
Media outlets including CNN, NBC, The New York Times, and the Los Angeles Times reported on a recent advertisement buy in support of the war in Iraq but ignored that two of the four advertisements link the Iraq war to 9-11.
In reports on President Bush's speech arguing that withdrawing U.S. troops from Iraq would "lead to widespread death and suffering as it did in Southeast Asia" following the Vietnam War, numerous media outlets failed to point out Bush's previous statements disavowing parallels between Iraq and Vietnam, while other reports did not note any criticism of the speech.