During his Lou Dobbs Tonight "special report" on the efforts of the city of Hazleton, Pennsylvania, to combat illegal immigration, Lou Dobbs praised a controversial anti-immigrant ordinance passed by the city, but he did not mention that, during the segment, he was promoting, on the show's CNN website, a website soliciting money for Hazleton's legal fund.
Lou Dobbs asserted that the military aircraft used by former Speaker Dennis Hastert would be able to fly current Speaker Nancy Pelosi "coast to coast." But the day before, CNN host Wolf Blitzer reported that it is possible that Hastert's plane could "fly coast to coast without refueling, but that would also depend on multiple factors, including winds, payloads, and reserve fuel requirements."
In a report on the use of a military plane to fly the House speaker, CNN's Lou Dobbs falsely claimed that Nancy Pelosi can travel nonstop from Washington to California, where her home district is located, "in the plane that [Dennis] Hastert was using." In fact, according to reports, the jet Hastert used did not have the fuel capacity to make nonstop, cross-country trips.
CNN's Lou Dobbs misrepresented remarks made by Sen. John Kerry, adopting the White House's interpretation of them and running an Internet poll asking, "Do you believe John Kerry owes our troops in Iraq an apology?" Moreover, CNN's live coverage regarding the remarks failed to note an Associated Press report that supports Kerry's explanation for them.
CNN's Lou Dobbs and Fox News' Bret Baier reported on President Bush's visit to Pennsylvania to campaign for Rep. Don Sherwood and noted that Sherwood has acknowledged having an "extramarital affair." But neither Dobbs nor Baier mentioned allegations that Sherwood had "repeatedly chok[ed]" and "attempt[ed] to strangle" his former mistress.
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Many television news outlets touted a USA Today/Gallup poll putting President Bush's job approval rating at 44 percent as a success for Bush, asserting that his rating is "the highest it's been in a year." But four days earlier, the same news organizations ignored a Pew Research Center poll showing Bush's approval rating at 37 percent.
CNN's Wolf Blitzer, Lou Dobbs, and Kelli Arena characterized a judge's ruling that the Bush administration's warrantless domestic spying program is unconstitutional as a serious blow to the administration's efforts to combat terrorists. But it's not at all clear that the administration must violate the law to protect the country or that warrantless domestic wiretapping has been effective in combating terrorists.
Lou Dobbs claimed that "[i]f the Heritage Foundation [hadn't gotten] involved," a recent immigration bill passed by the Senate "would have approved 100 million immigrants into this country." But independent analysts have questioned the methodology and results of a Heritage study to which Dobbs was referring; the study claimed that the Senate bill would allow more than 100 million people to legally immigrate to the U.S. over the next 20 years.
In reports on the Senate immigration bill, CNN's Lou Dobbs and Christian Science Monitor staff writer Gail Russell Chaddock cited a dubious immigration study conducted by Robert Rector of the conservative Heritage Foundation. However, neither Dobbs nor Chaddock noted that independent analysts have questioned the methodology and results of Rector's study, which has reportedly influenced the Senate immigration bill debate.
CNN's Lou Dobbs stated that Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert "told CNN Iran could make a nuclear bomb within months." Dobbs was referring to an interview CNN host Wolf Blitzer conducted with Olmert, in which Olmert stated: "The question is when will [Iran] cross the technological line that will allow them at any given time, within six or eight months, to have nuclear bomb?" and answered his own question, asserting that the "threshold ... can be measured by months, rather than years." But Dobbs neglected to mention that the U.S. intelligence community disagrees with Olmert's assessment.
On CNN's Lou Dobbs Tonight, Lou Dobbs claimed that the Senate immigration bill, which includes numerous provisions targeting illegal immigration, does "absolutely nothing for border security." On the same show, correspondent Casey Wian characterized Mexican President Vicente Fox's trip to Salt Lake City, Utah, as a "Mexican military incursion," and claimed that "[y]ou could call" Fox's trip to the United States "the Vicente Fox Aztlan tour" -- drawing a baseless link between Fox and the reconquista movement, which maintains that portions of the American Southwest belong to Mexico.
On CNN's Lou Dobbs Tonight, Time columnist Joe Klein praised President Bush's proposed immigration reforms, claiming that Bush's position on immigration is "deeply held," that while campaigning for the presidency in 2000 Bush would "take essentially the same position he took last night," and that Bush is "going up against the conservative base of the Republican Party on a matter of conscience." However, Klein ignored the White House's reported advocacy of an amendment to Rep. F. James Sensenbrenner's (R-WI) controversial immigration bill that would have facilitated criminal prosecutions of illegal immigrants -- a position nowhere to be found in Bush's recent speech on immigration.
A Christian Science Monitor article cited a May 3 Zogby poll that found "[b]y a 2 to 1 margin" likely voters prefer the more punitive, enforcement-only immigration bill passed by the House in December over the comprehensive proposals currently being considered by the Senate. CNN host Lou Dobbs also cited the poll to claim that "voters overwhelmingly believe the House of Representatives has a better plan than the Senate." But the Zogby poll -- which was commissioned by an anti-immigration group -- misrepresented both proposals, and most polls on the issue run counter to Zogby's conclusions.