Right-wing media are claiming that as dean of Harvard University Law School, Elena Kagan covered up incidents in which "two liberal law professors" were accused of plagiarism. In fact, Harvard investigated the allegations and found no deliberate wrongdoing, and there is no evidence that the findings were motivated by politics.
Suggesting that recent protests against Arizona's new immigration law are unreasonable, Fox & Friends claimed the United States naturalized "a lot of people" from Mexico in 2009. However, immigration policy experts have pointed out that the U.S. immigration system offers very few channels for legal entry for low-skilled workers, who are drawn to the country by the demand in the labor market.
Since the NBA's Phoenix Suns announced that they would wear their "Los Suns" jerseys during a May 5 game as a way to honor the Latino community and take a stand against Arizona's newly passed immigration law, conservative media have suggested they are "protesting the American dream" and are "responsible" for a "climate of hate."
In recent days, Fox News and the conservative media have seized on the official logo of the Nuclear Security Summit to claim its image "looks like" an Islamic crescent. However, as Comedy Central's Jon Stewart noted, "the inspiration for the logo is actually the Rutherford-Bohr Model of the atom that we all learned about in high school."
Fox News advanced the attack that Obama nominee Craig Becker would be an "anti-democratic and anti-free speech" member of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) because he believed "employers should have no role in union-organizing elections at all." But during a congressional hearing on his nomination, Becker stated that as a board member, he would be bound by law, which includes the "indisputable" right of employers to express views on unionization.
A Harris poll released on March 24 found that a majority of Republican respondents believe that President Obama "is a socialist," "wants to take away Americans' right to own guns," "is a Muslim," "wants to turn over the sovereignty of the United States to a one world government," and "has done many things that are unconstitutional." The findings follow a year of such smears and attacks on Obama by conservatives.
On ABC's This Week, Karl Rove pushed the anonymously sourced allegation that the White House tried to intimidate Democrats into voting for the health care bill by sending "unsolicited emails to federal employees." However, White House officials have stated that the emails were sent out to everyone on a voluntary White House mailing list and are not specifically targeted at federal employees.
Though Politico has since removed an article reporting that a memo about health care it originally cited came from Democratic leaders, Fox Nation is still asserting as fact that the memo is from Democrats.
From the Fox Nation (accessed on March 19):
As we noted earlier, Politico replaced the article with the following statement:
An earlier post in this spot detailed what was purported by Republicans to be an internal Democratic memo regarding the upcoming health reform vote Sunday. Democratic leadership has challenged the authenticity of the memo. POLITICO has removed the memo and the details about it until we can absolutely verify the document's origin.
Fox News' Special Report also referenced the memo in an earlier report, citing no evidence of its authenticity.
As we've been documenting of late, Fox News has been on a tear with its anti-reform activism now that the health care reform legislation inches closer to a possible vote in Congress this week. And the one person who has received much of Fox News' ire of late is, of course, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who has been a favorite target of the right since she ascended to the speakership and whose resignation they continually demand.
Well, today, discussing the "political fallout" from health care on Hannity, The Daily Caller's S.E. Cupp gleefully jumped in to heap additional scorn on Pelosi when Sean Hannity brought up Obama's and Congress' approval ratings; Cupp falsely suggested that Pelosi has a 3 percent approval rating. Cupp announced that a new poll had "Pelosi at 3 -- 3! -- 3!" Hannity interjected: "Percent?" Cupp, laughing, replied: "Yeah -- 3," adding, "Terrible." Then she laughed some more.
This 3 percent approval number for Pelosi, however, doesn't in fact exist. From the poll:
3. Do you approve or disapprove of the job Nancy Pelosi is doing as speaker of the House?
Approve Disapprove (DK)
16-17 Mar 10 31% 57 13
Democrats 56% 28 16
Republicans 9% 83 8
Independents 25% 65 10
Then you get to question 9 of the poll and you start to see the -- how shall I say? -- asinine reasoning by which the 3 percent number became Pelosi's approval number. First, the poll question:
9. Which one of following people do you have the most respect for -- President Barack Obama, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, or Chief Justice of the Supreme Court John Roberts? (ROTATE)
President Speaker Chief Justice
Obama Pelosi Roberts (All) (None) (Don't know)
16-17 Mar 10 46% 3 37 2 9 3
Democrats 76% 4 12 3 4 2
Republicans 14% 2 67 1 12 4
Independents 48% 2 35 1 11 3
See, only 3 percent of people in this poll had the "most respect for" Pelosi, not approved of the job she is doing as speaker. Either I'm dumb or my powers of comprehension have been impaired by March Madness mania and now both respect and approval mean the same thing.
Bill O'Reilly, who is ... um, very fond of attacking Pelosi, also couldn't help himself tonight, saying on his show: "One poll said -- you know what Nancy Pelosi's approval rating is? Three percent." But, unlike Cupp, O'Reilly caught himself, quickly putting his hand up and adding, "It's not a straight approval rating question -- it's who do you trust? And they listed Obama, and somebody else, and then Pelosi at 3 percent."
Final thought: Guess who conducted the poll? Two points if you picked Fox News.
It's been a week now since Robert Montgomery inaccurately claimed in an ESPN column that a federal strategy "could prohibit U.S. citizens from fishing" and a week since ESPNOutdoors.com executive editor acknowledged that there were "errors" and a lack of "balance" in the piece. But Fox Nation is still linking to Montgomery's column and suggesting that the false claim is somehow true.
When the allegation first surfaced, Fox Nation joined other media outlets in spreading the absurd claim (not the first time Fox has jumped on debunked conspiracy theories as senior fellow Karl Frisch has noted), with the Fox Business Network and Fox News' Glenn Beck joining in. Then an interesting thing happened: a March 10 FoxNews.com article reported that government documents don't contain "language pertaining to a potential ban on recreational fishing."
And still, Fox Nation won't let this one go.