On Lou Dobbs Tonight, National Council of La Raza's Janet Murguia accused host Lou Dobbs of using "hate groups to make your case on immigration," noting that Dobbs had aired a graphic from the Council of Conservative Citizens, a group linked to white supremacists. Dobbs responded: "You got anything a little more recent?" He also asked, "How long was that on the air?" When Murguia responded, "It doesn't matter how long," Dobbs replied, "Of course it does." Dobbs also labeled the Anti-Defamation League and the Southern Poverty Law Center as "absolute advocate groups for open borders and amnesty for illegal aliens" and said of the ADL, "They are a joke."
In separate reports, Dana Bash and Mary Snow aired a clip of Sen. John McCain saying of Mitt Romney, "He's consistently taken both sides of any major issue. He has consistently flip-flopped on every issue." However, neither noted that McCain himself has changed his position on immigration.
On CNN's Lou Dobbs Tonight, Lou Dobbs agreed with a viewer that "[t]here was not one question about illegal immigration" asked during the recent Democratic presidential debate, saying, "You know, I noticed that. I wonder why." But, during the debate, CNN's Joe Johns asked Sen. Barack Obama if his health-care plan would "cover the estimated 12 million or so illegal immigrants" in the United States. And Wolf Blitzer later asked a similar question of John Edwards.
During the early evening of January 8, the day of the New Hampshire primaries, Bill Bennett said on CNN: "The Clintons come in like George McGovern and go out like Richard Nixon. I think they're going out, by the way." Later, Bennett also stated: "Count Hillary Clinton out of this." But after CNN called the primary for Clinton that night, Bennett commented, "You know, watching the mainstream media saying that she was done and finished -- for a conservative Republican, where do I go? Do I side with the Clintons or do I side with the mainstream media?" At no point did Bennett mention his earlier comments.
On Lou Dobbs Tonight, Lou Dobbs said of Sen. Barack Obama: "[H]e may not be converting, but he is certainly revealing a relationship with his faith that heretofore had been unexpressed." In fact, Obama has discussed his faith publicly for years, including in his 1995 memoir.
During a report on the DREAM Act, a measure proposed by Sen. Dick Durbin that would have provided permanent resident status to a select group of undocumented immigrants, CNN's Lisa Sylvester reported that the bill's sponsors "held a news conference in the Capitol with illegal alien college students who'd benefit from the program," and that "[o]pponents demanded federal immigration officials detain the illegal aliens." However, several media outlets have reported that the three students featured at the press conference all have temporary legal status.
On CNN's Lou Dobbs Tonight, author Phil Kent asserted that "back in 2004, the American Civil Liberties Union, of all people, rejected some Ford and Rockefeller grants because of fear of terror links." Guest host Kitty Pilgrim did not challenge the claim. In fact, the ACLU has stated that it rejected funding from the Ford and Rockefeller foundations because their "restrictive funding agreements ... might adversely affect the civil liberties of the ACLU and other grantees."
In recent days, NBC, CNN, and Fox News have all aired reports or discussed the case of Norman Hsu, who The Wall Street Journal suggested may have funneled illegal campaign contributions to Sen. Hillary Clinton. However, when Mitt Romney's national finance committee co-chairman Alan Fabian was charged with mail fraud, money laundering, bankruptcy fraud, perjury and obstruction of justice, the three networks did not report or discuss it during programs available in the Nexis database.
CNN's Christine Romans repeatedly claimed that American troop deaths in Iraq "are down this summer" and also reported that "[t]he Pentagon today is citing the surge in Iraq as a reason for a drop in troop deaths this summer." However, statistics compiled by the Iraq Coalition Casualty Count show that the 260 U.S. troop deaths in Iraq during June, July, and August 2007 make this the deadliest June-August of the Iraq war for U.S. troops.
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.