Bob Schieffer did not challenge Dick Cheney's false comparison between the harsh techniques used in the interrogations of CIA detainees and those used in the U.S. military's training programs, nor Cheney's repetition of the myth that more than 60 former Guantánamo detainees have returned to the fight.
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On the CBS Evening News, Katie Couric asked Bob Schieffer if Sen. Judd Gregg's withdrawal as commerce secretary nominee "raise[s] issues about the Obama administration's vetting process." Schieffer responded: "Well, I don't think it can help but do that." Neither noted that in a press release announcing his withdrawal, Gregg stated that "nothing about the vetting process played any role in this decision."
On Face the Nation, Bob Schieffer adopted the often repeated Republican talking point that some government spending in the recovery package currently being debated in the Senate is not stimulus. In fact, while testifying about the bill, CBO director Douglas Elmendorf said that CBO and "most economists" believe that "all of the increase in government spending ... provides some stimulative effect."
CBS' Bob Schieffer baselessly suggested that Hillary Clinton may "try to block" Caroline Kennedy's possible appointment to replace her as U.S. senator from New York, adding that there is "[n]o love lost with the Kennedy family after they endorsed [President-elect Barack] Obama early on." But Clinton has reportedly "told her supporters not to involve her in their efforts to stop Caroline Kennedy's path to the U.S. Senate" and that their comments critical of Kennedy "weren't appreciated."
On two successive nights, Bob Schieffer asserted that Sen. John McCain will tell voters that Sen. Barack Obama is going to raise their taxes without noting that the charge misrepresents Obama's tax plan. In fact, Obama has proposed cutting taxes for low- and middle-income taxpayers and raising taxes only on single people earning more than $200,000 per year and families earning more than $250,000 per year.
On Face the Nation, Bob Schieffer did not ask Rep. Heather Wilson about a recent Justice Department report that called for further investigation of actions she and others allegedly took surrounding the firing of former New Mexico U.S. Attorney David Iglesias. The report stated that their actions may have constituted an "attempt to pressure Iglesias to accelerate his charging decision" in a case and that if attempts to pressure Iglesias occurred, they could constitute obstruction of justice or wire fraud.
On CBS' Face the Nation, Bob Schieffer asserted that Sen. John McCain "suspended his campaign" to deal with the Wall Street crisis, ignoring evidence that after McCain announced he was going to suspend his campaign, his ads continued to run; his advisers repeatedly attacked Sen. Barack Obama on cable news networks; and he gave interviews with the three broadcast networks the following day.
In an RNC speech, former Sen. Fred Thompson said of Sen. John McCain, "[B]eing a POW doesn't qualify anyone to be president. But it does reveal character." Similarly, retired Gen. Wesley Clark, in a July appearance on CBS' Face the Nation, told host Bob Schieffer that McCain was "a hero," and that "I certainly honor his service as a prisoner of war," but that "I don't think riding in a fighter plane and getting shot down is a qualification to be president." But while Schieffer suggested in July that Clark "denigrate[d]" and "attack[ed]" McCain's "military service," he did not ask McCain about Thompson's remarks during a September 7 interview on Face the Nation.
On the CBS Evening News, Bob Schieffer asserted that Gov. Sarah Palin is "[s]omeone, you know, who is against earmarks, who is against that bridge to nowhere." But Palin's administration has said it requested federal earmarks in 2008, and she reportedly initially supported the so-called "bridge to nowhere" project.
On Face the Nation, Bob Schieffer alleged that "[Sen. Barack] Obama's people are trying to denigrate the war hero's military service," referring to Sen. John McCain. Schieffer did not explain which of "Obama's people" he was talking about, but a few days earlier he said that "[retired Gen.] Wesley Clark, who was speaking for Obama, tried to marginalize John McCain's military service" in a June appearance on Face the Nation. In fact, Clark did not "denigrate" McCain's "military service"; rather, he questioned the relevance of McCain's combat experience as a qualification to be president.
On Face the Nation, Bob Schieffer stated that Sen. Barack Obama "seemed to have a slightly different take" on withdrawing troops from Iraq in July 3 remarks, as compared with a speech he made on March 19. But Schieffer omitted Obama's statement in the March 19 speech that he would set Iraq policy in consultation with military commanders.
On Face the Nation, Bob Schieffer claimed that Sen. Hillary Clinton is "saying it looks like ... maybe the surge is working in the sense that there is less violence there." But as Media Matters for America has repeatedly noted, Clinton actually said: "We've begun to change tactics in Iraq, and in some areas, particularly in Al Anbar province, it's working. ... We're just years too late changing our tactics. We can't ever let that happen again."
On CBS' The Early Show, Hannah Storm told Bob Schieffer that "[a] lot of people ... took" Michelle Obama's statement "as a slam at [Sen.] Hillary Clinton," adding: "She and her husband both said, 'Not so,' but there is a school of thought that says with a woman running for the Democratic presidential nominee that it may be up to the wives to criticize her because the men can't." At no point did either Storm or Schieffer provide Mrs. Obama's full comments, in which she talked about her own family and did not refer generally or specifically to any other candidates.
In appearances by Karl Rove on Sunday morning talk shows on Fox, CBS, and NBC, not one interviewer asked whether an August 19 Washington Post article was accurate in stating that, according to White House officials, one of Rove's "two basic rules" in putting together briefings for political appointees was "to make sure they complied with the Hatch Act," a federal law that limits political activities by federal employees. As the article noted, "the Office of the Special Counsel ... has concluded that the Hatch Act was violated" during a briefing that was conducted by a Rove aide for political appointees in the General Services Administration.