Conservatives are busy spinning the results of a new Pew Research Center study that found among all the candidates running for president, Barack Obama has received, hands down, the least amount of positive coverage (and among the most negative) over the last five months.
The eye-opening conclusion, of course, runs counter to the generations-old mantra that the press has a liberal bias and that reporters and pundits have been on the side of Barack Obama since Inauguration Day.
According to the Pew results, that's just not the case. Not even close.
It's true that some observers (including Media Matters) have in the past questioned the usefulness of similar press coverage studies. But conservatives have cited past Pew reports as a way to portray the rest of the media as biased.
So what's the conservative response to Pew's latest finding? Partisans claim the Pew study is flawed, in part, because it monitored too many media outlets when taking the press' temperature on Obama. It's true that the study cast a very wide net, collecting data not just on the traditional media organizations and how they covered the candidates, but from thousands of sites on the Internet. And that may explain why Obama's coverage as measured by Pew was so downbeat: Because the right-wing blogosphere is built around a very simple formula of hating President Obama.
Wallowing in guttural disdain for the President of the United States, not to mention his wife, is what far-right media outlets do around the clock. That's their business model. So it's not surprising that when a study sets out to measure all of Obama's coverage, the right-wing media's relentlessly negative, and often hateful, attacks on him would help tip the scales in terms of tone.
In other words, it appears conservatives are furious that the Pew study may have accurately captured the insane amount of the scorn and contempt the far right heaps on Obama. Conservatives are indignant that their endless, fact-free hate-fest may have been truthfully measured.
Note to conservatives: Nonstop loathing has its consequences.