... then again, maybe I'm wrong

Blog ››› ››› JAMISON FOSER

Just when I started to think that the problem with the folks at the Media Research Center might be stupidity rather than dishonesty (see below), they remind me the two possiblities aren't mutually exclusive.

Yesterday, MRC founder Brent Bozell blasted "ABC's failure to speak to and about" MRC's attacks on ABC anchor George Stephanopoulos for having telephone conversations with friends and sources. Here's Bozell:

ABC News may decide that silence is the best policy. I assure them that will be a mistake. We will not stop this discussion.

Today, in a letter posted online by Politico's Michael Calderone, ABC Vice President Kerry Smith responds by pointing out that, in fact, ABC has not "fail[ed] to speak" about this topic. Here's Smith:

In your letter and public utterances you falsely assert that ABC News has been silent on this matter. That is simply untrue. Upon reading your press release last week, we reached out to the MRC to make it abundantly clear that you had totally mischaracterized the Politico story written by John Harris last Tuesday. Indeed, Politico posted a story last Friday by Ben Smith pointing out exactly how badly you had mangled the facts. ... To give further lie to your claim that ABC News has not responded to your distortions, our senior vice president was quoted in the Politico story saying, "George speaks to Emanuel, but he speaks to plenty of conservatives and Republicans every single day -- that's part of his job. The idea that there is some kind of daily conference call that George hops on is just nonsense and not true."

Ok, so, Bozell was wrong; ABC has addressed his bogus allegations. Indeed, they even "reached out to the MRC" on the topic. Now, here's where things get really hilarious, as MRC's bungled attacks on the media always seem to:

Furthermore, last Friday, a reporter from CNS News, which was founded by you and continues to be directly affiliated with the MRC, contacted our media relations staff for a piece he'd been assigned to write on this very topic. We cooperated immediately and provided him an on the record response. We have since learned from your reporter that his story was killed.

Wow. I guess at this point, the only question is whether the story was killed so that Bozell could claim ABC refused to talk without being contradicted by an article produced by his own "news" entity - or whether that was just a convenient coincidence.

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