Jim Angle falsely claimed that Sen. Carl Levin accused the Bush administration of "orchestrat[ing]" leaks to the media about its own domestic surveillance program. Media Matters for America has noted four other instances, all on Fox News' Special Report, in which Angle and other Fox News correspondents have cropped or misrepresented quotes from Democratic senators.
In his Los Angeles Times column, Max Boot mischaracterized the opposition to the Bush administration's warrantless domestic surveillance programs, offered a misleading defense of the National Security Agency's reported call-tracking operation, and falsely claimed that the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act impeded a pre-9-11 terror investigation.
On Fox News' Special Report, Roll Call executive editor Morton Kondracke said the telecommunications company Qwest was "basically helping terrorists" because "to its discredit, [it] said it was not cooperating with the NSA [National Security Agency] and specifically decided not to cooperate" by providing the NSA with the phone call records of its customers. According to The New York Times, a lawyer representing Qwest's former CEO has said that the company "[[Qwest]] turned down requests by the National Security Agency for private telephone records because it concluded that doing so would violate federal privacy laws."
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Less than a week after Rush Limbaugh claimed that Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's letter to President Bush contained "Democratic talking points" and "even some liberal Hollywood Jewish people talking point[s]," Limbaugh hosted Vice President Dick Cheney on The Rush Limbaugh Show.
MSNBC's Chris Matthews criticized the "mainstream media" for "continu[ing] to act as if most people support the war, and it's the outside weirdoes that oppose it," when "[t]hat's not true." However, Matthews himself falsely asserted just two days earlier on Hardball that a CBS News/New York Times poll released May 9 showed "for the first time" that Americans "really have a majority view that we were wrong to go to Iraq." In fact, eight CBS/Times polls dating back to July 2004 have shown that a majority of respondents believe the United States should have "stayed out" of Iraq.
On MSNBC's Countdown, host Keith Olbermann awarded third place in his nightly "Worst Person in the World" awards to Fox News host David Asman and American Spectator writer Mark Yost for comments they made on Fox News' Your World with Neil Cavuto. Asman stated that journalists covering the Iraq war are "not going to report on a lot of heroism." In response, Yost suggested that reporters are "somewhat embarrassed by people or feel lesser of themselves by people who do incredibly heroic things." Olbermann remarked: "That's right, boys. That's why the media covered up all the heroism on Flight 93."
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In an interview with White House press secretary Tony Snow, NBC's Today co-host Katie Couric allowed Snow's misleading claims -- as well as his use of the racially charged term "tar baby" in his first live televised press briefing -- to go unchallenged.
A Weekly Standard editorial criticized the Bush administration for not hyping "data-mining," demonstrated by the National Security Agency's reported data collection program, as "a crucial tool against unknown mass-murderers." The editorial offered little to justify the claim that "data-mining" is "a crucial tool," though there are experts who question the utility of "data-mining" in terrorism investigations -- specifically the type of "data-mining" the in which NSA is allegedly engaged.
On CBS' Face the Nation, host Bob Schieffer failed to challenge misleading claims by national security adviser Stephen J. Hadley about the scope of the National Security Agency's (NSA) various domestic surveillance activities and the effect of their public disclosure. Further, Schieffer adopted the White House's favored terminology for the NSA's warrantless domestic eavesdropping program, calling it the "terrorist surveillance program."
In recent articles, the Associated Press employed the Bush administration's preferred term -- "terrorist surveillance program" -- to describe the administration's warrantless domestic surveillance program and reported that it allows "eavesdropping on phone calls to and from the United States when the calls involve al-Qaida and its operatives." In fact, while the National Security Agency (NSA) program is officially described as targeting those suspected of having ties to terrorist groups, news reports have indicated that the operation has led to the surveillance of thousands of Americans with no ties to terrorism.
Time columnist Joe Klein -- the magazine's "most liberal commentator" -- continued a pattern of attacking Democrats, the "Democratic left," and liberals. While purportedly critical of White House senior adviser Karl Rove, who he said will launch "another nefarious" campaign against Democrats in the run-up to the 2006 elections, Klein argued that Rove will "be aided by those on the noisome left" and singled out three prominent African-American House Democrats as particularly susceptible to such attacks.
On the May 11 edition of his nationally syndicated radio program, when asked for his views on "[b]lowing up Iran," CNN Headline News host Glenn Beck answered, "I say we nuke the bastards." Beck continued: "In fact, it doesn't have to be Iran, it can be everywhere, anyplace that disagrees with me."
Wall Street Journal deputy editorial page editor Daniel Henninger suggested that Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's assertion that "secret prisons in Eastern Europe" do not comport with laws, religious values, or human rights "correlate[s] with the views of whoever in the CIA leaked the prisons' existence" to The Washington Post.
Chris Matthews falsely claimed that a recent CBS/New York Times poll indicated that "the American people for the first time, now, really have a majority view that we were wrong to go to Iraq." In fact, in seven previous CBS/New York Times polls, a majority of respondents have said the United States "should have stayed out" of Iraq.