Rush Limbaugh and Fox News' Jim Angle both repeated the misleading claim that the Bush administration's warrantless domestic surveillance program targeted only terrorists. In fact, the program has monitored the communications of thousands of people with no terrorist connection.
Fox News' Jim Angle repeated as fact President Bush's and Attorney General Alberto Gonzales's explanation of Bush's 2004 remarks, in which he stated that "any time you hear the United States government talking about wiretap, it requires ... a court order," and that "[w]hen we're talking about chasing down terrorists, we're talking about getting a court order before we do so." Angle did not inform viewers that Bush's explanation -- that the statement applied only to roving wiretaps in the context of the USA Patriot Act -- is contradicted by his own words.
Fox News' Jim Angle falsely claimed that Democrats initially objected to the Bush administration's domestic surveillance program because they opposed eavesdropping on people believed to be tied to terrorist activity but then made a "shift in strategy" to argue, as Charles Krauthammer put it, "a narrow issue of legality." Krauthammer further suggested that Democrats engaged in a "wholesale retreat" after recognizing that "opposing the idea of listening in on an Al Qaeda call into the U.S. is not a political winner."
Fox News chief Washington correspondent Jim Angle repeated the discredited claim that the National Security Agency's (NSA) warrantless domestic surveillance program led to the arrest of Al Qaeda accomplice Iyman Faris, a naturalized U.S. citizen who pleaded guilty in 2003 to plotting to destroy the Brooklyn Bridge. However, a January 17 New York Times report indicated that information gleaned from the warrantless NSA eavesdropping did not play "a significant role" in Faris's capture.
Fox News chief Washington correspondent Jim Angle distorted remarks made by Sen. Edward M. Kennedy (D-MA) to falsely claim that Kennedy said the Bush administration's warrantless domestic spying program as Bush described it does not violate the law. In fact, the next sentence of Kennedy's statement indicated that he and the Congressional Research Service believe such activities operate outside of the law.
Several television and radio commentators have either hosted debates or openly questioned what they claim are the insidiously progressive goals of the award-winning film Brokeback Mountain, yet many of the same commentators openly admit they have not seen it.
Numerous media outlets echoed Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales's criticisms of former Vice President Al Gore's January 16 speech, which was highly critical of President Bush's authorization of warrantless domestic espionage in apparent violation of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA). Gonzales argued that Gore was being "inconsistent" because the Clinton administration did the same thing; in fact, Clinton's use of warrantless physical searches, which Gonzales cited, did not violate FISA because at the time FISA did not address physical searches.
Fox News' Jim Angle reported on how, hypothetically, domestic eavesdropping could be done without violating FISA, even though the reality of the Bush administration eavesdropping program reportedly conflicts with Angle's scenario.