Many media conservatives have recently embraced and promoted the accusation, almost in unison, that President Obama has "lied" or broken promises. In many cases, these accusations are based on distortions of comments he has made or misrepresentations of campaign pledges.
In his Washington Times column, Tony Blankley wrote: "After the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, the Bush administration rolled back very few civil liberties. Aside from establishing a regime for handling captured foreign terrorists, the curtailments largely consisted of common-sense enhancements in the power of intelligence agencies to monitor terrorism suspects and access their personal records." Contrary to Blankley's suggestion, Jose Padilla, a U.S. citizen, was held without charges for more than three years.
CNN's Lisa Sylvester did not challenge Tony Blankley's claims on the recovery bill, including that the Congressional Budget Office said the legislation "would actually contract the economy as opposed to doing nothing," and that, according to CBO, "in 2011, they still would not have spent about a third of the money."
Tony Blankley baselessly asserted in his column that a Saturday Night Live sketch portraying a New York Times reporter who writes a story suggesting incest in the Palin family was "written with the assistance" of Al Franken. In fact, Franken reportedly had a role in the creation of a different SNL sketch.
A Washington Times editorial criticized the media's coverage of recent remarks by Sen. Joe Biden, saying they were "the focus of the media's racial-insensitivity microscope." But less than two days earlier, Times editorial page editor Tony Blankley had asserted that Biden was "getting, more or less, a pass from the mainstream media" on his comments.
On Hardball, Tony Blankley falsely claimed that Republicans had considered the entire "Contract with America" under "open rules." In fact, several bills related to the Contract with America were considered under rules that limited the amendments that could be offered.
On MSNBC, Tony Blankley claimed that President Bush "doesn't have much of a political view" of Iraq. "He is now looking at the policy ... and he's going to decide what to decide on a policy basis." Republican strategist Cheri Jacobus repeated the claim by Bush supporters that he "has always been pretty good [at] not conducting his job based on the polls, even if a lot of the people around him wanted to."
The Washington Times' Tony Blankley claimed that an investigation into Newt Gingrich's possible tax violations was the result of the Clintons' "policy of personal destruction." In fact, months before the Internal Revenue Service audit was reported, the House ethics committee voted unanimously to launch an investigation. The ethics committee ultimately voted 7-1 to recommend that the House impose a fine of $300,000 on Gingrich and reprimand him.
Since the Democratic Party won control of both the House and the Senate, the media have focused on such issues as Pelosi's choice of attire and whether being female will affect her ability to lead. MSNBC anchor Contessa Brewer wondered if Pelosi's "personal feelings [were] getting in the way of effective leadership" -- a problem she suggested would not surface in "men-run leadership posts" -- and whether men were "more capable of taking personality clashes."
On Hardball, The Washington Times' Tony Blankley stated that the word "macaca," "[i]n Italian, I'm told, it means a clown." The term was twice used by Sen. George Allen to refer to S.R. Sidarth, a volunteer with the campaign of Allen's Democratic Senate challenger Jim Webb.
Tony Blankley said that the reporting of the alleged massacre by U.S. troops of civilians in Haditha "is already being used by the opponents of the president" as a "blood libel," a term that has most frequently been used to accuse Jews of murdering non-Jews, especially children, and using their blood to make Passover matzoh, and that "the over-reporting of it by a gleeful media is more damaging to the country than any other single fact."
In his Washington Times column, Tony Blankley stated that there is "strong evidence" of a secret agreement between active-duty generals to retire in succession and then speak out against Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld. In fact, Blankley's only evidence is a Washington Post column by former Clinton ambassador to the United Nations Richard Holbrooke, who wrote that he expected more generals to speak out. According to Blankley: "Mr. Holbrook [sic] is at the least very well informed if he is not himself part of this military cabal intended to 'consume ... Donald Rumsfeld.' "