While discussing possible replacements for Alberto Gonzales, several CNN anchors and reporters cited DHS Secretary Michael Chertoff's handling of the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina as a "potential problem" but did not provide any details regarding Chertoff's mismanagement of the disaster. Indeed, two congressional reports specifically identified numerous failures by Chertoff and DHS in overseeing the government's response.
In reports on a recent advertisement buy by Freedom's Watch in support of the Iraq war, media reports have failed to resolve the question of which members of Congress the ad buys are targeting, despite the apparent newsworthiness of the issue. For instance, The Washington Post suggested that the ad campaign is an attack on Democrats, a suggestion repeated by Time's Karen Tumulty; other reports have not even mentioned the issue; while still others have asserted that the ads target both Democrats and Republicans. However, according to analyses by war opponents, the buys target mainly Republicans, a charge Freedom's Watch called "propaganda by our enemies."
Media outlets including CNN, NBC, The New York Times, and the Los Angeles Times reported on a recent advertisement buy in support of the war in Iraq but ignored that two of the four advertisements link the Iraq war to 9-11.
During a Situation Room report on the allegation that, in 2005, then-chairman of the House Transportation Committee Don Young (R-AK) changed the language of a $10 million earmark for Florida after the bill had been passed, correspondent John Zarrella failed to identify Young as a Republican. Additionally, neither he nor host Wolf Blitzer noted that Republicans controlled Congress when Young allegedly made the change to the bill.
A day after CNN's Lisa Sylvester cropped Michelle Obama's recent statement about "run[ning] your own house" to suggest that the comments were an attack on Sen. Hillary Clinton, Sylvester again failed to provide the full context of Mrs. Obama's remarks, which shows she was talking about her own family and did not refer generally or specifically to any other candidates.
Discussing President Bush's denial that the federal government has plans for a "North American Union," CNN's Suzanne Malveaux said Bush's denial followed "a lot of talk in the blogosphere and conspiracy theorists." But Malveaux did not note that CNN's own Lou Dobbs, on whose show Malveaux regularly provides news reports, has repeatedly hyped the possibility of a North American Union.
On Lou Dobbs Tonight, guest host Lisa Sylvester aired a clip of Michelle Obama saying: "Our view is that if you can't run your own house, you certainly can't run the White House." Air America Radio host Laura Flanders later agreed that the comment "was a swipe at Hillary Clinton." Sylvester, however, did not provide Obama's full comments on the topic, in which she talked about her own family and did not refer to another candidate.
While discussing objections raised by Sen. Susan Collins' chief of staff to a tracker hired by the Maine Democratic Party, CNN's Miles O'Brien suggested that political tracking became widespread only after the 2006 midterm elections. In fact, CNN and other news organizations have noted campaigns' use of trackers since at least 1996.
Reporting on U.S. troops having returned to Afghanistan's Tora Bora region, CNN's Miles O'Brien and Barbara Starr noted that Osama bin Laden had reportedly escaped capture there in late 2001, but not that, according to a previous CNN report, the administration ignored requests for more troops, allowing bin Laden to escape.
During a CNN interview about the effect of Karl Rove's resignation, Suzanne Malveaux did not challenge Tom DeLay's claim that "[t]he president held the line on spending," despite the fact that, even though President Bush assumed office with a $125.3 billion surplus, the Bush administration has run a deficit in every fiscal year of the Bush presidency. Additionally, Malveaux did not note Rove's reported assertion that his "biggest error" of the 2006 election cycle was "not working soon enough to replace Republicans tainted by scandal," or point out that DeLay himself remained in the House for several months following his indictment on money laundering and conspiracy charges.
In reporting that a "much-criticized pact" between Pakistani President Musharraf and tribal leaders -- that "would have pulled Pakistani troops from that tribal region bordering Afghanistan where many believe Osama Bin Laden is ... fell through" -- CNN's Miles O'Brien did not mention that the deal, which did take effect and which the Bush administration "reluctantly endorsed," facilitated the "regenerat[ion]" of several elements of Al Qaeda's infrastructure, according to a recent National Intelligence Estimate.