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Neil Cavuto and Mark Levin falsely claimed the Obama administration "want[s] to control executive pay" for companies that haven't received bailouts. Earlier that day, Robert Gibbs said of such a proposal, "[T]here are not plans to do something broad like that."
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Mark Levin declared of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi: "[S]he's gotta have a big military jet. I mean, she's the first woman speaker. She wants a really, really big one. ... And if she doesn't get it, well then that's sexual discrimination." Levin ignored the fact that the House sergeant-at-arms -- who is responsible for the security of House members -- has said that a larger military plane for Pelosi, "that is capable of making non-stop flights" between Washington, D.C., and California, is necessary for "security purposes."
In recent weeks, several conservative media figures, echoed by Republican lawmakers, have responded to comparisons in the media of President-elect Barack Obama to FDR, or assertions in the media that a New Deal-level of government intervention will be necessary to resolve the current economic crisis, by asserting that the New Deal was a dismal failure, plunging the 1930s economy into a depression, an assertion that prominent progressive economists flatly reject.
On his radio show, Mark Levin cited a recent study predicting that an ice age will occur in the next 10,000 to 100,000 years as purported evidence that humans should not "try and control carbon dioxide" emissions that contribute to global climate change. But Levin did not mention that the study's co-author reportedly warned against using the study to argue that "we should stop fighting warming" and stated: "There's no excuse for saying 'we've got to keep pumping carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.' "
Discussing a Buffalo News column by Douglas Turner, radio host Mark Levin said that "[Turner] has written, among other things, that I compared Barack Obama to Adolf Hitler. That is a flat-out lie. And he picked that lie up from Media Matters. I never called Barack Obama Hitler, and I never would, because he's not." In fact, neither Turner nor Media Matters claimed that Levin had "called Barack Obama Hitler." Media Matters listed Levin among a group of conservative media figures comparing Obama to Hitler or the Nazis.
Several conservative talk radio hosts have accused Democrats of "trying to steal" the Minnesota senatorial election for Democratic challenger Al Franken over incumbent Sen. Norm Coleman (R). They offer no evidence for the accusation; indeed, the state's Republican governor has said there is none.
Beyond the echelon of widely known conservative radio hosts with national audiences lies a vast network of lesser-known syndicated and regional radio hosts who have become key components of an echo chamber for conservative talking points and falsehoods. Like their better-known counterparts, these syndicated and regional radio hosts have played active roles this election season in promoting falsehoods and smears in an all-out effort to foment hate and distrust among their listeners for President-elect Barack Obama. While the hosts vary in the degree of vitriol they spew and in their ratio of rebuttable falsehoods to unbridled smears, Media Matters for America and Colorado Media Matters have identified common themes that many, if not all, have promoted over the past year.
Since October 16, numerous media figures -- among them Jerome Corsi, Ann Coulter, Mark Levin, and Bill Cunningham -- have compared Sen. Barack Obama to Adolf Hitler or the Nazis.
Numerous conservative radio hosts, including Chris Baker, Sean Hannity, Mark Levin, Jim Quinn, Michael Savage and Brian Sussman, echoed the false claim, originating on the Drudge Report, that Sen. Barack Obama said in a 2001 interview that he regretted that the Supreme Court has not addressed the redistribution of wealth. In fact, the "traged[y]" Obama identified during the interview was that the civil rights movement "became so court-focused" in trying to bring about political and economic justice.
Addressing his September 4 comments, in which he called the National Organization for Women, the "National Organization of Ugly Women," Mark Levin said: "I just wanted to underscore that maybe I shouldn't have called them the National Organization of Ugly Women. For now on, it's the National Organization of Really Ugly Women."
Calling into Sean Hannity's radio show, Mark Levin said of the National Organization for Women: "It's not the National Organization of Liberal Women. It's the National Organization of Ugly Women." Moments later, after Hannity stated, "[a]pparently [Sen. Barack] Obama took a shot at me again," Levin responded, "Obama's obsessed with you. ... Maybe he's attracted to you."