Fox News Sunday's Chris Wallace falsely claimed that Sen. John McCain "momentarily mistook Shias and Sunnis in Jordan," and the Chicago Tribune's Michael Dorning asserted that if Sen. Barack Obama "makes a mistake" on his upcoming overseas trip, "it'll be a much bigger deal than, say, when McCain was in Jordan, or somewhere in the Middle East, and basically mixed up Shia and Sunnis for a moment." In fact, McCain did not "mix up" Shias and Sunnis just for a moment; he made the false statement three times in two days.
On Fox & Friends First, after Gretchen Carlson reported that "The New York Times says shoddy electrical wiring has killed 13 Americans and injured many more," Brian Kilmeade stated: "They had to find the negative story in Iraq?" When Carlson again discussed the Times story on Fox & Friends, Kilmeade stated: "So, this is America bad?"
Three Fox & Friends co-hosts repeatedly asserted that former President Bill Clinton recently "attack[ed]" Sen. John McCain's "selfless heroism at the Hanoi Hilton," in Andrew Napolitano's words, and two of the hosts -- Napolitano and Gretchen Carlson -- falsely suggested that Clinton's statement and recent comments by retired Gen. Wesley Clark were part of a coordinated effort by Sen. Barack Obama's campaign to "attack" McCain's service. But the Fox & Friends co-hosts provided no evidence that Clinton's comments were intended to refer to McCain; nor did they provide the context of those remarks.
While discussing reports of a shortage of one type of IP addresses, Gretchen Carlson stated: "I was wondering if we should call up Al Gore. Because maybe he would have a solution for this, since he invented the Internet." In fact, Gore never said that he "invented the Internet."
MSNBC and Editor & Publisher have noted that Fox & Friends featured photos of New York Times reporter Jacques Steinberg and editor Steven Reddicliffe that appeared to have been digitally altered. But Fox News has yet to address the controversy.
During a segment in which Fox & Friends co-hosts Steve Doocy and Brian Kilmeade labeled New York Times reporter Jacques Steinberg and editor Steven Reddicliffe "attack dogs," Fox News featured photos of Steinberg and Reddicliffe that appeared to have been digitally altered -- the journalists' teeth had been yellowed, their facial features exaggerated, and portions of Reddicliffe's hair moved further back on his head.
On Fox & Friends, Mike Huckabee falsely asserted, "When Katrina, a Cat-5 hurricane, hit the Gulf Coast, not one drop of oil was spilled off of those rigs out in the Gulf of Mexico." In fact, according to a report prepared for the federal government by an international consulting firm, damages related to Hurricane Katrina resulted in 70 spills from outer continental shelf structures with a total volume of approximately 5,552* barrels of oil and petroleum products.
On Fox & Friends, Brian Kilmeade, who previously falsely asserted that Sen. Barack Obama "[e]vidently ... went to a madrassa" as a child, asked his guest: "[D]o you find it insulting at all when Barack Obama goes out of his way to say, 'Hey, I am not a Muslim. I'm a Christian, and let's stop these spread' [sic] as if being a Muslim is bad?"
On Fox & Friends, Ben Stein misrepresented Sen. Barack Obama's tax plan to raise the capital gains tax rate on the wealthiest earners, stating: "[P]eople that have incomes in the five digits ... that's crazy to increase their capital gains tax." In fact, Obama has said he would not raise the capital gains tax on individuals with income of less than $250,000.
Fox & Friends co-host Steve Doocy gratuitously used Obama's middle name and echoed a false suggestion by Sen. John McCain that Obama supports raising taxes for middle-income Americans by claiming, "Under a Barack Hussein Obama administration, you will wind up with higher taxes." In fact, Obama has pledged to establish a tax credit for families.
In an article about a lawsuit against Fox News and hosts Steve Doocy and Brian Kilmeade for repeating as fact an online parody news report of a school prank that included fabricated quotes attributed to the superintendent, the AP reported that the case has been dismissed and that the judge called Doocy and Kilmeade "gullible." But the Fox & Friends segment in question marked at least the third time since 2004 that Fox News has issued a retraction and apology for airing a fake news report that repeated false information.
On Fox & Friends, Mitt Romney falsely asserted that Antoin Rezko "financed [Sen. Barack Obama's] house," a claim that Steve Doocy did not challenge. In fact, the Obamas established a land trust to purchase the property and took out a $1.32 million mortgage on the home, financed through the Northern Trust Co.
Articles by the AP and The New York Times uncritically quoted Sen. John McCain's labeling of Sen. Barack Obama as "the most liberal" senator without mentioning that the National Journal rankings to which McCain was referring did not offer a ranking for McCain himself because he "did not vote frequently enough" to receive one. They also did not mention that the ranking was based on subjectively selected votes, or that a separate study that considers all non-unanimous votes offers a notably different ranking for Obama.
Fox & Friends aired a clip of Rev. Jeremiah Wright, Sen. Barack Obama's former pastor, saying at an NAACP event: "Please run and tell my stuck-on-stupid friends that Arabic is a language; it's not a religion. Barack Hussein Obama. Barack Hussein Obama. Barack Hussein Obama." Correspondent Steve Brown reported that Wright "was actually mocking the people who use Obama's full name to be divisive or derisive." Nevertheless, in later segments, Fox & Friends aired only Wright reciting "Barack Hussein Obama." Co-host Brian Kilmeade introduced one segment by saying, "He's back, and he's still supporting Barack Hussein Obama."
Beginning on the afternoon of April 23, MSNBC, Fox News, and CNN aired a controversial ad by the North Carolina Republican Party attacking Sen. Barack Obama and two Democratic gubernatorial candidates at least 22 times combined, in most cases also noting that Sen. John McCain denounced the ad. As media figures on MSNBC and CNN pointed out, the repeated broadcasts benefit the North Carolina Republican Party, which does not have to pay for them, and they presumably benefit McCain, even as he is credited with taking the high road for criticizing the ad.