Numerous media figures have asserted that a recent report purportedly identifying former deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage as Robert Novak's original source for Valerie Plame's identity as a CIA operative prove that Karl Rove and I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby were not involved in the leak of her identity. However, Armitage's role as Novak's first source is not inconsistent with Rove's and Libby's involvements in the leak -- both were original sources of the information for two other reporters.
In a July 26 article, the New York Post reported that "Peter Cook, who humiliated his supermodel wife, Christie Brinkley, by bedding a doe-eyed teen in the Hamptons, has given thousands in campaign cash to [Sen.] Hillary Rodham Clinton [D-NY]." The Post went on to report that it asked Clinton whether she would return Cook's campaign contributions. Now that the New York Post has decided to start asking candidates if they will return contributions connected to people who have committed adultery, fairness demands that the Post apply this standard consistently.
In a New York Post column, Dick Morris alleged that Democratic supporters of Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton's re-election campaign had contributed money to GOP candidate K.T. McFarland to "handicap" her Republican primary opponent, John Spencer. However, at the time McFarland accepted the contributions, she was running for a seat in the House of Representatives -- not competing directly with Clinton.
On Fox News' The Journal Editorial Report, Wall Street Journal editorial board member Stephen Moore falsely claimed that "in the outer continental shelf," the United States has "more oil available than Saudi Arabia." Similarly, the New York Post claimed in an editorial that drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) "could eventually produce close to what America now imports from Saudi Arabia" -- a claim also contradicted by U.S. Department of Energy estimates.
The New York Post asserted in an editorial that the administration has "often come off as treating its top priorities -- the War on Terror and, particularly, Iraq -- as near-afterthoughts." Far from treating those subjects as "near-afterthoughts," however, the Bush administration has made them a central theme in every major policy agenda and electoral strategy for the past four years.
In an editorial condemning The New York Times' Pulitzer Prize-winning reporting on the Bush administration's warrantless surveillance program, the New York Post asserted that "[e]ver since" Times reporters James Risen and Eric Lichtblau revealed the existence of the program on December 16, 2005, "federal officials have reported a dropoff in the terrorist calls they were monitoring." The Post did not name the purported "federal officials," nor did it provide evidence or elaboration to support the claim.
CNN's David Ensor claimed that a 2003 executive order "makes clear that the president and the vice president can order aides," such as Vice President Dick Cheney's former chief of staff, I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, "to give any classified material they want to a reporter." Similarly, in his New York Post column, John Podhoretz, citing a 1982 executive order, claimed that President Bush "can declassify a document merely by declaring it unclassified."
A New York Post editorial and Fox News host John Gibson both claimed that documents recovered from Iraq -- recently released by the Bush administration and summarized by ABC News -- prove that the administration correctly asserted in its buildup to the Iraq war that Saddam Hussein was working with Al Qaeda. In fact, as ABC pointed out, the documents that both the Post and Gibson cited are not definitive in any way and are of varying credibility.
New York Post columnist John Podhoretz described Democrats' use of the term "incompetent" to describe President Bush as "an act of political cowardice," adding, "voters can smell that kind of cowardice a mile off." But a poll by the Pew Research Center reported that "incompetent" was the most frequently cited one-word description for Bush, and that, overall, negative impressions of Bush -- measured by respondents' selection of words such as "incompetent," "idiot" or "liar" to describe Bush -- outweighed positive ones, 48 percent to 28 percent.
Following Dubai Ports World's announcement that it would divest its leases to terminals at six U.S. ports, news outlets and media figures depicted Republicans as having neutralized the issue of port security. In other cases, they portrayed the Democratic opposition to the state-owned Arab firm's acquisition of the ports as purely political. But such characterizations take a narrow view of the political issues involved in the controversy, entirely ignoring differences between the two parties' broader records on this issue.
In a New York Post book review, Andrew C. McCarthy falsely suggested that the Clinton administration was responsible for the Supreme Court's ruling that the requirement that law enforcement officials give suspects Miranda warnings for confessions to be admissible in court is embedded in the Fifth Amendment of the Constitution.
Media figures have argued that the scandal surrounding former Washington lobbyist Jack Abramoff is good news for Sen. John McCain because, unlike other members of Congress, he is untainted by the scandal and could benefit politically from being cast as a reformer. But these media figures failed to note that, like many Democrats who they have suggested are tainted, McCain received campaign money from Abramoff's clients, as reported by the Associated Press and the Center for Responsive Politics. *
Several media figures have used the release of Osama bin Laden's new audiotape to denounce critics of the Bush administration's conduct of the war in Iraq.