On NPR's Morning Edition, Mara Liasson asserted that a new McCain campaign ad "catalogued all of the false or sexist or awful things that Democrats and Obama supporters have said about [Gov.] Sarah Palin." In fact, the ad did not "catalogue" any "false" statements the Obama campaign or other Democrats have made about Palin and, as FactCheck.org noted, the ad "distorts" each of the three Obama campaign statements it uses "to make the case" that Sen. Barack Obama is "being 'disrespectful' of Palin."
On NPR, Renee Montagne asked Juan Williams of Gov. Sarah Palin's claims about the "bridge to nowhere": "Is it surprising that she keeps saying that, or repeating that she told Congress, 'No thanks,' on that bridge?" Rather than note that Palin's assertion is false, Williams responded in part by saying: "Well, what they're [the McCain campaign] emphasizing is that she, you know, did eventually turn down the idea without disclosing that early on she was, as you said, campaigning for it back in 2006. ... So, it's a matter of, you know, omission in their view."
Discussing Sen. Bob Casey's speaking slot at the Democratic National Convention, both NPR and CNN falsely asserted that late Gov. Bob Casey Sr. was not allowed to speak at the 1992 Democratic convention "because of his opposition to abortion rights." In fact, other Democrats who opposed abortion rights spoke at that convention and at every convention since, so Casey's opposition to abortion rights could not have been the sole reason he was not given a speaking role.
On NPR's Morning Edition, Mara Liasson asserted there was "irony" in "a liberal Democrat showcasing his faith." Liasson did not explain what she thought was "ironic" about such an action.
On NPR, Cokie Roberts asserted that Sen. Barack Obama's vacation to Hawaii "makes him seem a little bit more exotic," and characterized Hawaii as "a somewhat odd place to be doing it," despite also asserting, "I know that he is from Hawaii, he grew up there, his grandmother lives there." Roberts previously criticized Obama on ABC's This Week, stating that Obama's vacation in Hawaii "has the look of him going off to some sort of foreign, exotic place."
Reporting on U.S. Senate candidates campaigning at a Mississippi county fair, NPR's Debbie Elliott uncritically aired a clip of one fairgoer claiming that the "[o]nly time we have ever gotten anything out of the federal government was when the Republicans were there." In fact, according to the Tax Foundation, from 1981 through 2005, Mississippi has consistently received more from the federal government than the state's residents pay in taxes.
NPR's David Welna quoted Sen. Joe Lieberman saying "I don't have any intention" of joining the Republican Party "before the end of this session of Congress," to which Welna added: "Which still leaves unanswered what Lieberman might do in the next session of Congress." But Welna did not note that if Lieberman joined the Republican Party, he would be breaking his promise during the 2006 campaign to caucus with the Democrats if re-elected to the Senate.
NPR's Mara Liasson asserted that Sen. John McCain, "while never abandoning his commitment to legalization, has begun emphasizing the importance of securing the borders." In fact, McCain's current position -- that "we've got to secure the borders first" -- is not just a change of "emphasi[s]"; it is at odds with his prior position that border security could not be disaggregated from other aspects of comprehensive immigration reform without being rendered ineffective.
NPR's Michele Kelemen reported that Sen. John McCain "suggested in an interview with MSNBC that the Iraqi calls for a troop withdrawal date may be driven by politics in Baghdad," and quoted McCain as saying, "The Iraqis have made it very clear, including the meetings I had with the president and foreign minister of Iraq, that it's based on conditions on the ground. [...] I've always said we will come home with honor and with victory and not through a set timetable." But Kelemen did not note that in 2004, when asked what the United States would do if the "Iraqi government asks us to leave," McCain responded, "I think it's obvious that we would have to leave."
NPR's Mara Liasson said that Sen. John McCain "has made a career of taking heat from his own party for working with liberal Democrats like ... Ted Kennedy on immigration." However, Liasson did not note that during his run for president, McCain reversed his position on a key component of comprehensive immigration reform, and stated that he would not vote for the bill he co-sponsored with Kennedy.
NPR's Renée Montagne, MSNBC's Pat Buchanan, and CNN's Bill Bennett all referred to the National Journal's 2007 Vote Ratings, which ranked Sen. Barack Obama the most liberal senator that year, without noting the subjectivity of the ratings. The National Journal based its rankings not on all votes cast by senators in 2007, but on "99 key Senate votes, selected by NJ reporters and editors, to place every senator on a liberal-to-conservative scale."
NPR's Scott Horsley reported on the attacks on Sen. Barack Obama's national security credentials by Sen. John McCain's campaign, including allies such as former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, and played an audio clip of McCain saying, "And I think Mayor Giuliani, who is very well qualified on this issue, having been mayor of New York City at an incredible time in American history, has put it very well." However, Horsley did not note that McCain had previously said that "having been mayor of New York City" on 9-11 did not constitute foreign policy or national security experience.
NPR's Juan Williams asserted that Sen. John McCain "has fought his own party, the GOP, on immigration." And Fox News' Dick Morris stated that McCain "really has moved to the left of the Republican Party" on "the immigration bill." However, neither Williams nor Morris mentioned that McCain has reversed his position on immigration and now asserts that "we've got to secure the borders first" -- a position at odds with his prior assertion that border security could not be disaggregated from other aspects of comprehensive immigration reform without being rendered ineffective.
Responding to a question about whether Sen. John McCain was "maintaining the endorsement" of controversial televangelist John Hagee. NPR's Cokie Roberts asserted: "Well, he says that it was a mistake to seek and accept the endorsement. So I -- what does that mean? I don't know if that means that he has -- maintains it or not." In fact, when asked if he "no longer want[ed]" Hagee's endorsement, McCain stated: "I'm glad to have his endorsement."
In a report on congressional action in the wake of the subprime mortgage crisis, National Public Radio's Brian Naylor uncritically reported McCain's statement that it's not the government's job to "bail out and reward those who act irresponsibly, whether they are big banks or small borrowers." Naylor did not note that McCain reportedly agreed with the Federal Reserve's decision to extend a $30 billion line of credit to facilitate the acquisition of Bear Stearns by JP Morgan Chase.