During a May 29 campaign appearance, Sen. John McCain falsely stated that U.S. troops in Iraq "have [been] drawn down to pre-surge levels." As the Associated Press reported, "[T]here are 17 brigades in Iraq" right now, as opposed to the 15 brigades in place before the increase. In 2003, then-Democratic presidential candidate Howard Dean was criticized in the media for his response to a question about the number of active-duty soldiers, with Tim Russert and others questioning his fitness to be commander in chief. In light of McCain's troop-surge falsehood and numerous national security gaffes, will the media similarly question his suitability to be commander in chief?
In an article about Sen. John McCain's early political career, the Los Angeles Times' Richard A. Serrano described Charles H. Keating Jr. as "[a]nother influential friend" who "raised more than $100,000 for McCain." Serrano noted that Keating eventually went to prison for his role in a savings and loan scandal, but did not mention McCain's own alleged involvement in the scandal, or that Keating's relationship to McCain reportedly extended beyond simply raising money for his congressional campaigns.
On MSNBC Live, Andrea Mitchell failed to challenge Republican strategist Trent Duffy's false claim that Sen. John McCain "was one of the first to call for Secretary Rumsfeld's resignation." In fact, as his campaign itself has reportedly admitted, McCain did not call for former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld's resignation. While McCain expressed "no confidence" in Rumsfeld in 2004, he reportedly "said his comments were not a call for Rumsfeld's resignation."
New York Sun reporter Eli Lake wrote that in a May 27 speech on nuclear safety, Sen. John McCain said "he favored the creation of an international repository where all spent nuclear fuel could eventually be sent," which Lake described as a "position that could win him votes in Nevada." However, Lake did not note that McCain has previously supported storing nuclear waste at Yucca Mountain in Nevada.
The Associated Press quoted Sen. John McCain claiming in an interview that he would "seize that opportunity to educate Senator [Barack] Obama along the way" if the two were to visit Iraq together, and that McCain also said that Obama "really has no experience or knowledge or judgment about the issue of Iraq." But the AP did not mention a series of claims made by McCain that raised questions about his own "knowledge" and "judgment" about Iraq, including about the safety of Baghdad neighborhoods and that Iran is training Al Qaeda.
In a report about a back-and-forth between Sens. Barack Obama and John McCain over a recently passed GI bill, CBS' Chip Reid uncritically quoted from a McCain statement, in which McCain stated that, instead of "tak[ing] the time and trouble to understand this issue," Obama "prefers impugning the motives of his opponent." But, in the same statement, McCain himself impugned Obama's motives.
On Fox News' Your World, Neil Cavuto reported on Sen. John McCain's rejection of Rev. John Hagee's endorsement, but he didn't note Hagee's remarks about Adolf Hitler and Zionism or that McCain admitted he sought Hagee's endorsement.
CNN and MSNBC.com's First Read blog uncritically repeated McCain campaign adviser Charlie Black's claim that campaign manager "Rick Davis and nobody else at his firm [Davis Manafort] either has been a registered lobbyist in five years." In fact, public disclosure reports filed with Congress show that Davis was registered to lobby in 2005 for Davis Manafort -- three years ago, not five. In addition, in 2006, while no longer registered as a lobbyist, Davis reportedly helped arrange a meeting with McCain on behalf of a Russian aluminum magnate with whom he was "seeking to do business."
After citing "Senator John McCain's maverick image," The New York Times' William Yardley wrote that "Republicans in Oregon are less likely to go to church and more likely to have a libertarian streak than those in some other states. Ordinarily, that might benefit Mr. McCain, who has struggled to win support from religious conservatives and has a history of breaking with his party on matters like immigration and campaign finance reform." But in citing McCain's purported "history of breaking with his party on matters like immigration," Yardley did not report that McCain has reversed his position on immigration -- to the point of saying that he no longer supports his own bill on comprehensive immigration reform.
The New York Times' Matt Bai claimed that "whether you agree with him or not, there is a notable honesty to" Sen. John McCain's position on the war in Iraq. In fact, McCain has made numerous false or inconsistent assertions on Iraq.