On January 17, InsightMag.com posted a story stating that Sen. Barack Obama attended a madrassa as a boy and that this information had originated from Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton's camp. With the aid of the conservative media, InsightMag.com's anonymously sourced report turned into 11 days of baseless accusations against two leading contenders for the 2008 Democratic presidential nomination.
Numerous media conservatives have touted a discredited post on the Media Research Center's NewsBusters weblog to baselessly claim that Hillary Clinton recorded her announcement video launching her presidential bid months prior to actually announcing. Even though the post was later updated to add that a reporter "whom I respect informs me that video was produced last week in DC," hosts such as Glenn Beck and Sean Hannity touted the NewsBusters post to support the claim.
ABC News political director Mark Halperin falsely suggested that while progressive 527 organizations with ties to the Democratic Party attacked President Bush during the 2004 election, there were no comparable groups on the right. But one of the most prominent 527 groups in the 2004 election cycle was the Swift Boat Veterans For Truth, a group with ties to both the GOP and the Bush-Cheney '04 campaign whose attacks on Democratic candidate John Kerry -- which included numerous false and discredited allegations -- received broad coverage in the media.
On Sean Hannity's radio show, David Horowitz attacked nonprofit organization Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington and George Soros, baselessly claiming that Soros has "put $75 million into these congressional elections, and he's doing it behind the façade of -- public interest, tax-exempt, charitable organizations."
David Horowitz and Richard Poe have yet to issue their promised rebuttal to Media Matters' item documenting doctored quotes, shoddy scholarship, factual errors, and baseless insinuations in their book The Shadow Party. Poe has claimed, however, that he and Horowitz are working on an "effective" rebuttal and vowed that Media Matters "will regret having asked for it."
For the second time in recent days, a Fox News host asked Ann Coulter what she would do if she were president. Coulter's most recent reply -- during a discussion on Sean Hannity's radio show of Iran's potential development of nuclear weapons -- was that she would "carpet-bomb them so they can't build a transistor radio" much less a nuclear weapon.
Two days after he criticized the media for suggesting that "we were in the middle of what is going to be a huge crisis with North Korea," Sean Hannity criticized Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton for commenting on the Connecticut Democratic primary "in the middle of a North Korean crisis." Hannity also asserted that the Connecticut primary revealed both Democrats' "rigid lack of openness to any new idea" and inability "to unify and take a solid position on Iraq."