Research

Right-Wing Outlets Falsely Claim Former CIA Director “Colluded” With Foreign Countries To Oppose Trump

Right-wing outlets and fake news purveyors are spinning a Guardian report to falsely claim that former CIA Director John Brennan “colluded” with foreign countries to target President Donald Trump. Communications between members of the Trump campaign and Russian officials was gathered incidentally by other countries by during routine monitoring of Russian activity. Many of these same outlets previously used this Guardian article to falsely suggest that Fox analyst Andrew Napolitano was vindicated in his claim about collusion between the British and former President Barack Obama.

April 21, 2017 1:29 PM EDT
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Breitbart Is Not Independent, It's The Communications Arm Of The Mercers' Empire

Top Editors Use Their Roles At Breitbart To Flack For Other Mercer Ventures They Also Work For

Media Matters investigates the web of self-dealing, conflicts of interest, and corruption surrounding Breitbart.com. Its top editors have used the site to promote nonprofit organizations, for-profit companies, and personal clients who in turn pay them hefty salaries.​

April 21, 2017 8:13 AM EDT
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Right-Wing Outlets Fabricate A Ben Carson Story

Conservative Media And Fake News Purveyors Credit Carson With HUD Audit Actually Ordered Under Obama By The Inspector General

Fringe outlets, forums, fake news purveyors, and right-wing media outlets incorrectly credited House and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Ben Carson for an audit that found errors in financial statements at the agency. Carson had nothing to do with the audit, which was actually conducted during former President Barack Obama’s administration by the Office of the Inspector General.

April 20, 2017 11:28 AM EDT
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Here Are Some Of The Sexist Things Neo-Nazi Favorite And O'Reilly Replacement Tucker Carlson Has Said

Fox News announced that host Tucker Carlson would be taking over Bill O’Reilly’s prime-time 8 p.m. slot after O'Reilly was forced out following pressure from advertisers amid an increasing number of sexual harassment reports against the longtime host. However, Carlson has a long record of minimizing rape and sexual harassment reports, as well as making sexist and demeaning comments against women and gender equality.

April 19, 2017 6:44 PM EDT
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TV News Scrutiny Of Ivanka Trump’s Conflicts Of Interest Spurred By New Bombshell

Trump Apologists Continued To Deflect Concerns Over Conflicts And Corruption In The White House

Broadcast and cable news programs heaped additional scrutiny on Ivanka Trump in the hours after The Associated Press broke a bombshell report that the lifestyle brand she owns had secured valuable trademarks in China before she met with the Chinese president for dinner at her father’s private Mar-a-Lago resort. News of the glaring conflict of interest between Trump’s role as a White House adviser and her private business empire was carried by the major broadcast networks --ABC, CBS, NBC, and PBS -- as well as CNN and MSNBC. Fox News ignored the issue entirely during its evening and prime-time programming, and longtime Trump apologist and former Fox host Greta Van Susteren actually defended Trump during her program.

April 19, 2017 4:47 PM EDT
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Fox News Promotes Eric Bolling, Noted Bigot, Conspiracy Theorist, And Muppet-Hater

In the wake of Bill O’Reilly’s departure from Fox News following an advertiser boycott stemming from sexual harassment settlements involving the prime-time host, Fox News announced a new lineup that includes giving host Eric Bolling his own show at 5 p.m. This promotion comes despite Bolling’s history of trafficking in racist stereotypes, promoting fear of Muslims in America, and engaging in conspiracy theories, including the birtherism made famous by now-President Donald Trump.

April 19, 2017 4:43 PM EDT
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Fox News Rewards O’Reilly Minion Jesse Watters With Prime-Time Slot On The Five

Fox News is rewarding Jesse Watters with a prime-time slot on the panel show The Five as part of the shakeup caused by Bill O’Reilly’s ouster. Watters, a former O’Reilly producer and longtime protégé, was widely condemned last year for a racist segment set in New York City’s Chinatown. His ambush interviews have disparaged immigrants, women, African-Americans, the homeless, and members of the LGBTQ community, and he earned notoriety for an incident in which he “followed, harassed, and ambushed” a female journalist on camera.

April 19, 2017 4:00 PM EDT
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As He Leaves Fox, Here Are Bill O’Reilly’s Worst Moments On The Air

Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly has helped set the bar for the normalization and dissemination of right-wing hatred, offering incendiary commentary about sexual harassment and assault, gender, race and ethnicity, low-income people, the LGBTQ community, Muslims and refugees, immigrants, and reproductive rights. Now that O'Reilly has been forced to step down from The O'Reilly Factor after an advertiser revolt over revelations that Fox News’ parent company, 21st Century Fox, paid $13 million in settlements to women who came forward with reports that O’Reilly was a sexual predator, Media Matters takes a look back at some of the lowlights of his career, including his history of inaccurate and embellished reporting.

April 19, 2017 1:35 PM EDT
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Media Figures Adopt Trump’s Spin To Whitewash Ossoff’s Showing In Special Election Primary

Reports On Ossoff’s Fundraising Ignore Advantage Republicans Have From Outside Spending

Following the special election primary for a vacant House seat in Georgia, media figures are repeating President Donald Trump’s spin highlighting out-of-state donations that helped Democrat Jon Ossoff. The focus on Ossoff’s fundraising, however, ignores the disproportionate advantage the Republican Party and Republican candidates got from outside groups in the race.

April 19, 2017 11:58 AM EDT
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Pro-Trump Websites In Denial After Reports Confirm Parts Of Trump Russia Dossier Were Corroborated

Fringe outlets and fake news purveyors are attacking a decision from a judge on the secret court that oversees the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) to issue a warrant to monitor the communications of President Donald Trump’s campaign adviser Carter Page. They're claiming the ruling was based on a dossier that detailed some alleged associations between the Trump campaign and Russia, which they say was largely without merit. But the FBI would have had to corroborate the information on its own to obtain a FISA court warrant, and the agency confirmed in February that pieces of the dossier were confirmed through other sources.

April 19, 2017 11:49 AM EDT
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Right-Wing Media’s New Favorite Immigration Statistic Reflects Misguided Policy

Right-wing media celebrated a new report from U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) that showed a significant drop in border apprehensions since President Donald Trump took office, suggesting that fewer immigrants are making the journey to cross the U.S.-Mexico border. Trump campaigned on preventing dangerous criminals from entering the country, but officials and experts report that the drop reflects the administration's focus on women and children and that the new policies incite fear in noncriminal immigrants and largely deter asylum seekers fleeing violence. In fact, these policies fail to address the proliferation of transnational crime organizations that Trump promised to tackle and undermine counter-crime operations within the United States.

April 19, 2017 9:57 AM EDT
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STUDY: Cable News’ Sporadic Coverage Of Trump's Hidden Tax Returns

Nearly Half Of Cable News Discussion Of Trump Tax Returns Since Inauguration Occurred Within A Week Of Rachel Maddow’s Tax Exclusive

A Media Matters study found that between President Donald Trump’s January 20 inauguration and Tax Day, April 18, evening cable news has dedicated only sporadic coverage to Trump’s failure to release his tax returns. And of the 110 segments spread out over three months, nearly half came within a week after MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow revealed two leaked pages of Trump’s 2005 tax documents. This inconsistent coverage comes as pressure mounts from activists and Republican lawmakers for the president to release his tax returns, and highlights the media’s inability to consistently report on this story.

April 18, 2017 7:08 PM EDT
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Media Fall For And Reinforce Trump’s Spin On “Buy American, Hire American” Executive Order

Multiple media outlets and figures uncritically reported on President Donald Trump’s planned executive order promoting policies that encourage the federal government to “buy American” and “hire American” wherever possible. These outlets and figures did not note that the executive order only calls for a review of current policy, and does not meaningfully change it, and some other outlets buried those crucial details in their reporting.

April 18, 2017 4:50 PM EDT
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Top Kentucky Newspapers Consistently Reported On The Substance And Impact Of Kentucky's Medicaid Waiver

A Media Matters analysis of the top two Kentucky newspapers’ coverage of an effort to radically alter the state's Medicaid program found that while both substantively covered the changes and impacts, The Courier-Journal led the way in in-depth reporting on the impacts of a Medicaid waiver on the state. The waiver request submitted by Gov. Matt Bevin included instituting draconian policies like a work requirement and mandated monthly premiums.

April 18, 2017 4:27 PM EDT
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STUDY: How Cable News Keeps Getting It Wrong About Abortion And Reproductive Rights

Evening Cable News Can’t Seem To Talk About Abortion Without Relying On Men And Anti-Choice Myths

A 12-month-long Media Matters study of evening cable news programs found that discussions of abortion, reproductive rights, and reproductive health were heavily dependent on male speakers and anti-choice misinformation. In particular, Media Matters found that men were participants in 60 percent of conversations about abortion and reproductive rights, and that 64 percent of statements about abortion that aired during this time period were inaccurate.

April 18, 2017 1:50 PM EDT
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