In their coverage of Ann Coulter's attacks on the widows of 9-11 victims, both Washington Post media critic Howard Kurtz and ABC's Jake Tapper denounced Coulter's inflammatory rhetoric while asserting that her underlying point -- that Democrats deliberately put forward "infallible" advocates in order to squelch honest debate -- is "valid" and "perfectly acceptable." But a closer examination of the specific examples of "infallible" advocates cited by Coulter turns up evidence that, in every case, these individuals have faced strong Republican opposition and, quite often, ad hominem attacks from conservatives.
ABC News correspondent Jake Tapper ignored the positive results of a recent ABC News/Washington Post poll focused on Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-NY). Citing the poll, Tapper claimed that "a daunting 42 percent of all Americans say they will never vote for her," adding that "[s]ome think she's too liberal. Others think she's untrustworthy." But Tapper ignored the actual results of the poll that found that a majority of respondents said Clinton is, in fact, "honest and trustworthy" and that her views are "about right," while a minority thought she is "too liberal."
In reporting on a newly released ABC News/Washington Post poll on the favorability of presumptive 2008 presidential nominees Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton and Sen. John McCain, the Post and ABC's Good Morning America focused almost entirely on numbers that indicate Clinton is "polarizing" and on the percentage of respondents who "would definitely not vote for" her in 2008. In its article, the Post also included an assertion about how people view Clinton that was contradicted by the poll results.
On April 24 and 25, CNN and ABC reported that congressional Republicans, including Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, were calling for President Bush to investigate possible price gouging by the oil industry. But none of the reports noted that Democrats had previously called for a price-fixing probe, including Sen. Chuck Schumer, who had called for such an investigation at a press conference a week earlier.
Discussing a recent report by Citizens Against Government Waste detailing wasteful government spending or so-called "pork," ABC News Washington correspondent Jake Tapper claimed on Good Morning America that Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) "is such an opponent of pork he's almost kosher." Tapper apparently overlooked a bill recently introduced by McCain asking for $10 million in federal money to establish a law center in his home state as a tribute to the late U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist.
ABC correspondent Jake Tapper quoted several participants in a conference titled "The War Against Christians" who complained that the concerns of conservative Christian voters are being ignored on social issues such as abortion and gay marriage. But nowhere in Tapper's report were any progressive voices included, nor were any Christian leaders quoted who disagree with the notion that there is a "war on Christianity."
In a March 15 entry on his ABC News weblog, Down and Dirty, ABC News correspondent Jake Tapper blasted "Awe-Inspiring, Soul-on-firing Democrats" for distancing themselves from Sen. Russ Feingold's resolution to censure President Bush over his warrantless domestic wiretapping program, adding, "Is this what a majority party looks like to you?"
An ABC Nightline report noting that Samuel A. Alito Jr., if confirmed, would make the Supreme Court majority Catholic stated that "liberals do have some concerns about such a Catholic court." But the report quotes no identifiable liberals or Democrats expressing this view. Nor does it mention it is supporters of President Bush's nominees who have raised the issue of their religious affiliations while attacking critics as anti-religion.