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Media Bias, 2006 Elections

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Research Project

Was There A Media Biased In The 2006 Elections

Have you ever wondered if the news you are told is really the whole story? Have you ever noticed discrepancies between the same stories on two different news organizations? Have you wondered could all those stories of media bias be true? You may even be asking what this has to do with my point; it's very simple, to prove whether or not there was a media bias in the 2006 elections I must first prove if there is a media bias at all.

Which Major News Sources Are The Most Widely Influential

Out of all the major news sources it is obvious that the televised news sources have the largest medium, and of the televised news programs Fox News, CNN, NBC (MSNBC, CNBC) and ABC held the highest rating1.

Who Might The Media Be Biased For

If the mass media is bias, then they must be bias for a certain point of view or political party. Since the United States is in a two party favored system the major news organizations would be more willing to risk losing their audience to gain ratings from supporters of one of the two major parties. Or it could be that the reporter is using their position to influence the audience towards their personal political belief.

"Host Hugh Hewitt: 'And so everyone that you work with, or 95 percent of people you work with, are old liberals.'

ABC News Political Director Mark Halperin: 'I don't know if it's 95 percent, and unfortunately, they're not all old. There are a lot of young liberals here, too. But it certainly, there are enough in the old media, not just in ABC, but in old media generally, that it tilts the coverage quite frequently, in many issues, in a liberal direction, which is completely improper....It's an endemic problem. And again, it's the reason why for 40 years, conservatives have rightly felt that we did not give them a fair shake.'

-- Exchange on The Hugh Hewitt Show, October 30."1

Quotes From Reporters On Air, Hinting Towards some Personal Political Bias


"'I'll tell you why the Richard Armitage thing was sort of a big yawn and why we didn't cover it that much, is because, first of all, everybody was anticipating a Karl Rove indictment, and that would have been a huge, huge story....Well, guess what? Karl Rove was not indicted. The air went out of the balloon at that particular point.'

-- CBS's Gloria Borger on CNN's Reliable Sources, September 17, discussing the paltry coverage of news that Armitage was the source who first told columnist Robert Novak that Joe Wilson's wife worked for the CIA."2


"'We now face what our ancestors faced at other times of exaggerated crisis and melodramatic fear-mongering: A government more dangerous to our liberty than is the enemy it claims to protect us from....We have never before codified the poisoning of habeas corpus, that wellspring of protection from which all essential liberties flow. You, sir, have now befouled that spring. You, sir, have now given us chaos and called it order. You, sir, have now imposed subjugation and called it freedom....These things you have done, Mr. Bush -- they would constitute the beginning of the end of America.'

-- Keith Olbermann in a "Special Comment" on the setting up of military trials for terrorists held at Guantanamo Bay, MSNBC's Countdown, October 18."3


"ABC's Sam Donaldson: 'What we'll see is subpoenas, if they [Democrats] take control, and these subpoenas will delve into every nook and cranny of the Republican administration for the last six years.'

ABC's Cokie Roberts: 'Well, now you're doing the Republican talking points, because that is exactly what the administration is making people fear.'

Donaldson: 'why do you think I'm saying it's a bad thing? I think it's probably a good thing.'

Roberts: 'I understand you think it's a good thing, but a lot of people don't think it's a good thing.'

-- Exchange on ABC's This Week, October 22."1


" 'The time has come, Mr. President, to face the hard, bruising truth. Donald Rumsfeld must go.' That is a quote from an editorial in this week's Military Times news-papers...."His strategy has failed, and his ability to lead is compromised. And although the blame for our failures in Iraq rests with the Secretary, it will be the troops who bear its brunt." 'They didn't even mention that he's also an obnoxious jerk and a war criminal.'

-- CNN's Jack Cafferty on The Situation Room, Nov. 6."2


" 'The Democratic wave that washed over American politics last night washed away Defense Secretary Rumsfeld and swamped many Republicans who tried to use the issue of illegal immigration to scare people into voting for them. I am delighted to say that they got their butts kicked.'

-- Fox's Geraldo Rivera, Geraldo at Large, November 8."3

The Ways The Media Is Able To Be Bias

The way networks can be bias on immigration, education, crime, of course the "war on terror" or other political issues is that they can ignore polls, chose polls or statistics that favor their point of view or simply try to mention a point of view as little as possible to make it seem insignificant. They might also try to "spin" in the exact opposite way by over using a term or phrase to make it seem more important than it really is. "NBC never used 'liberal' in its coverage, despite using 'conservative' 45 times"1


During the immigration rallies for or against guest worker program many news organizations banded together to portray one side of the story. In a study done by the Media Research Center on immigration coverage during March 24 to May 31

"none of the Big Three [ABC, NBC, CBS] mentioned the poll's



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