In an article about Wesley Clark's June 29 comments, the Los Angeles Times reported the McCain campaign's assertion that "Clark didn't pay proper homage" to Sen. John McCain's service as a POW in Vietnam, but did not report that, in fact, Clark said: "I certainly honor his service as a prisoner of war. He was a hero to me and to hundreds of thousands of millions of others in the Armed Forces as a prisoner of war."
July 1 reports by The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, and Reuters noting that John McCain's campaign organized a "conference call" of supporters to respond to Gen. Wesley Clark's recent comments about McCain did not mention that among those supporters was Bud Day, a member of the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth, whose smears against Sen. John Kerry were criticized by McCain himself.
The New York Times uncritically repeated the false charge that, during his June 29 appearance on CBS' Face the Nation, Wesley Clark "impugn[ed] Mr. [John] McCain's heroism." In fact, Clark praised McCain as "a hero to me and to hundreds of thousands of millions of others in the Armed Forces as a prisoner of war."
All three network evening newscasts misrepresented retired Gen. Wesley Clark's comments about Sen. John McCain on Face The Nation, with none noting that Clark praised McCain as a "hero" for his Vietnam war service. ABC's David Wright asserted that McCain's experience as a POW made Clark's comments "especially provocative." CBS' Dean Reynolds falsely suggested that Clark had questioned McCain's patriotism and had "critici[zed]" McCain's "service, including five years as a POW." And NBC's Brian Williams falsely suggested that Clark had impugned McCain's "war record."
On MSNBC Live, Contessa Brewer falsely claimed that former President Bill Clinton "reportedly told London's The Telegraph paper that [Sen.] Barack Obama was going to, quote, 'have to kiss my you-know-what,' unquote, if he wanted the former president's help." In fact, the Telegraph article quoted an anonymous "senior Democrat who worked for Mr Clinton," who in turn cited another anonymous source: "One person told me that Bill said Obama would have to quote kiss my ass close quote, if he wants his support."
CNN's American Morning deceptively cropped Wesley Clark's Face the Nation interview, airing a video of Clark saying of Sen. John McCain, "That large squadron in the Air -- in the Navy that he commanded, it wasn't a wartime squadron. He hasn't been there and ordered the bombs to fall," after which Clark was immediately shown saying: "I don't think riding in a fighter plane and getting shot down is a qualification to be president." But CNN edited out the portion of the exchange indicating that, in making the latter statement, Clark was responding to host Bob Schieffer's statement that, unlike McCain, Sen. Barack Obama has not "ridden in a fighter plane and gotten shot down."
On Fox News' The Strategy Room, Molly Henneberg asserted that Wesley Clark "seemed to attack [Sen. John] McCain's military service," and aired a video clip of Clark saying on CBS' Face the Nation, "I don't think riding in a fighter plane and getting shot down is a qualification to be president." But Henneberg did not report or in any way indicate that, in making that comment, Clark was responding to Face the Nation host Bob Schieffer's statement that, unlike McCain, Sen. Barack Obama has not "ridden in a fighter plane and gotten shot down."
Discussing Sen. John McCain's statement that "if the election were tomorrow ... Republicans would lose seats in both the House and the Senate," Wolf Blitzer asserted of McCain, "Should he be saying that right now? I know he's a straight-talker, but what do you think?" Blitzer has, on several previous occasions, pronounced McCain a straight-talker.
Reuters falsely suggested that Sen. John McCain most recently called for Russia to be excluded from the Group of Eight major industrialized nations (G-8) in October 2007, and uncritically quoted an anonymous McCain adviser's assertion that McCain no longer holds that position. In fact, McCain again called for Russia to be excluded from the G-8 in a March 2008 speech.
On MSNBC Live, responding to a comment by Andrea Mitchell about "the massive 1969 oil spill" in Santa Barbara, California, Sen. Richard Burr stated: "Well, Andrea, how technology has changed since 1969. It can take a Category 5 hurricane in the Gulf that really came twice, and the technology made sure that there wasn't a drop that was spilled in the Gulf." In fact, a report prepared for the U.S. Minerals Management Service stated that as a result of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita "124 [oil] spills were reported with a total volume of roughly 17,700 barrels of total petroleum products."