Liberal Media Bias: Networks refuse to report on Catholic suits against the Obama Administration

From Newsbusters by Brent Bozell with my emphases:

The evening news broadcasts all but spiked the largest legal action in history to defend our constitutionally protected religious freedom. The May 21 editions of ABC’s World News and NBC’s Nightly News refused to report the fact that 43 Catholic dioceses and organizations filed a lawsuit on Monday against the Obama administration. CBS Evening News gave this historic news a mere 19 seconds of air time.

This is the worst bias by omission I have seen in the quarter century history of the Media Research Center. Every American knows about the Chinese communists withholding for 20 years the news that the US had landed on the moon, because it reflected poorly on the government. Our US media today are no different. They are now withholding news from the American people if it is harmful to the re-election of Barack Obama.

This is not a mistake, nor is it an editorial oversight by the broadcast networks. This is a deliberate and insidious withholding of national news to protect the ‘Chosen One’ who ABC, CBS and NBC have worked so hard to elect and are now abusing their journalistic influence to reelect Obama. And when a network like CBS mentions the suit ever-so-briefly, [NB:] they deliberately distort the issue by framing it as a contraception lawsuit instead of what they know it to be: a religious freedom issue. It’s bogus, dishonest – a flat out lie.

The fact is that the Catholic Church has unleashed legal Armageddon on the administration, promising ‘we will not comply’ with a health law that strips Catholics of their religious liberty. If this isn’t ‘news’ then there’s no such thing as news. This should be leading newscasts and the subject of special, in-depth reports. Instead, these networks are sending a clear message to all Americans that the networks will go to any lengths – even censoring from the public an event of this historic magnitude – to prevent the release of any information that will hurt Obama’s chances of re-election.

The so-called ‘news’ media have sunk to a new low. This is despicable.


About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. ContraMundum says:

    I noticed its absence from CNN’s web page yesterday.

    By the time we’re in the swing of the election, though, refusing to report on it will be like the German press refusing to report on the presence of Allied bombers over the Fatherland.

  2. Supertradmum says:

    There has been absolutely nothing on any of the European stations I can get on SKY, which are many and varied. Horrible lack of fairness and judgement.

    The last acceptable prejudice is in action…..

  3. PAT says:

    Yes, it’s been, essentially, a total blackout of the news of the lawsuits by what Ann Coulter refers to as the NFM — that is, the Non-Fox Media.

  4. ray from mn says:

    This is exactly the way they handled the news of Newsweek’s recent “First Gay President” cover story and the Gawker story of a couple years ago about the homosexual scandal in Miami and other parts of Florida.

    They are acting just like Winston Smith in Orwell’s “Nineteen Eighty-Four” who was responsible for removing people from history.

    Do you suppose when Obama loses, they will fail to report that news?

  5. Frank H says:

    It was on the front page of this morning’s Wall Street Journal.

  6. digdigby says:

    When, for weeks, the entire MSM in lockstep, used three year old photos of a baby-faced Trayvon and the scariest ugliest police photo of Zimmerman, I decided the news was no longer ‘slanted’. No we are WAY past that. We are in Goebbels country, land of the Big Lie.

  7. ContraMundum says:

    The Wall Street Journal is also owned by Murdoch. I don’t know if it would count as a “non-Fox medium”.

  8. ContraMundum says:

    Oh crud. I can’t say I’m surprised, since I’ve never trusted Romney, but it looks like his is already reaching the conclusion that moral conservatives will have to vote for him, no matter what the Hell (very literally) he does, because it he doesn’t win, Obama will.

    The choice between two evils, for those who choose to go that route, looks to be between two undisguised, aggressive evils.

  9. Johnno says:

    The media has long been complicit between the fake American democracy. They support only those whom the establishment wants and manipulate elections. Just look at how they falsely report or completely ignore Ron Paul and his winning of delagates and falsely try to portray Mitt Romney as the default ‘winner.’ This is because they (the establishment and the controleld media) want Romney to go up against Obama, because regardless of who sins their agendas will still be furthered. It’s just a difference of speed. It’s likely Romney is only paying lip service and will do nothing to reverse anything Obama has done. As other commentators point out, there’s no difference between either.

  10. chantgirl says:

    Yes, I was already unhappy that Romney was the only alternative on the ballot. The only thing that compels me to vote for him now is the possibility of Obama getting to nominate another Supreme Court Justice, but I’m hoping and praying that Obamacare and the HHS mandate are struck down in the courts because I can’t see how someone who would get in bed with these people would not have serious reason to force Catholic instutions to provide their “product”. I liken the presidential race this fall to the choice between voting for the Emperor or Darth Vader. Perhaps Vader can still be convinced of the error of his ways. This is one ballot I won’t cast joyfully.

  11. St. Louis IX says:

    I wonder if it is time to start organizing pickets in front of local news stations. Catholics holding large signs making a peaceful public show of media bias… NBC CBS ABC Persecute the Catholic Church with NEWS BLACK OUT etc etc
    Start showing up with tape across mouth declaring the silence of Fair Reporting etc

  12. jilly4ski says:

    My local CBS affiliate news station had the story, now granted it wasn’t a very long or informative segment. But it mentioned the 3 big plaintiffs by name (Diocese of NY, DC, and Notre Dame) and some of Fr. Jenkin’s quote on the lawsuit.

  13. lydia says:

    Chant girl the drug manufactuer you are referring to makes many many drugs including the new drugs for MS that have been helpful to many that suffer from the disease. I’ll walk barefoot over broken glass to vote for Romney and send the marxist first gay president back to Chicago.

  14. gracie says:

    The silver lining is that network news has been losing viewers for a quarter of a century:

    “In (2010) an average of 21.6 million people watched one of the three signature network news programs each night during the year. That is a loss of 752,000 viewers, or 3.4%, from the average viewership the year before . . . It also marks an acceleration in the decline of nightly news viewership compared with the previous two years. After losing roughly a million viewers a year for 20 years, the nightly newscasts lost 565,000 viewers in 2009 and 273,000 in 2008, raising the possibility that the loss of viewers was slowing. Those hopes were dampened in 2010.”:

    Perhaps the biological solution is at work here too. Whatever the reason, it’s hopeful to know that increasingly people are getting their news from other sources (like Fr. Z).

  15. The Cobbler says:

    And so it comes out that when they all said “Blogs don’t break news stories, whatever they may add to them,” they meant, “If the blogs break it, we can’t admit it’s a news story.”

    Also, re. gracie’s statistics, I’d be interested to compare those with the population growth in the same time periods and find out what the newswatching percentage of the population fell by.

  16. silicasandra says:

    I’ve been under the impression that TV news is pretty much the most pathetic of all news coverage, so I can’t say I’m surprised. Good reporting on this issue would involve too much critical thinking. Not that the coverage in many newspapers has been much better, but I think the medium is different enough that at least there has to be some attempt at actual writing. How much can you really tell in 19 seconds anyway? Easier to show a funny cat video and then tweets in response to said funny cat video.

  17. AnAmericanMother says:

    Contra Mundum,

    Sort of reminiscent of Baghdad Bob – “There are no Catholics here!”

  18. gracie says:

    The Cobbler,

    The only persons I know who watch the network news are those who don’t have satellite or cable or the internet. My experience is that most of these people are elderly and get easily frustrated if something goes wrong with their cable or satellite and so give up using it. There must be other groups of people who watch network news but who they are is a mystery.

  19. Charles E Flynn says:

    CBS had a longer report (6 min: 27 sec) featuring Timothy Cardinal Dolan on its morning program:

    Dolan: White House is “strangling” Catholic church.

    The CBS video is linked from Mark Shea’s blog “Catholic and Enjoying It!”.

  20. PostCatholic says:

    It was, though, reported on NPR, where you got a few column inches.

    I suppose there’s not much to say about a filing; it will be much more interesting when these things get to motions and trial.

  21. trad catholic mom says:

    It’s been covered on America Live with Megyn Kelly, in fact she has covered the issue pretty regularly on her show since the HHS mandate came down and they talked about the lawsuits every day since they were announced.

  22. Charles E Flynn says:

    A good summary of the commentaries:

    A most quotable day!, by Carl E. Olson. Note the reference to the Chinese government’s twenty year delay in reporting the American moon landing in the quote from the article by Brent Bozell of the Media Research Center.

  23. Kerry says:

    Imagine the surprise of anyone whose ‘news’ arrives via “The Big Alphabets”, when, some weeks or months from now they see or hear of these lawsuits. A week after the asteroid struck the Yucatan 65,000,000 years ago, the duckbills looked up and said, “What was that flash of light?”

  24. Banjo pickin girl says:

    I’m with Lydia. Drug companies make more than one product.

  25. SKAY says:

    Obama said that he does not like the Constitution as written.and I think it is pretty clear that he ment it.
    The media made sure that was not widely known either.
    I’m not sure we will still have the present Constitution at the end of four more years of his executive orders and Chicago thug tactics.

    I will vote for Romney

  26. ContraMundum says:

    I’m sure he just wants to go back to the Articles of Confederation. It’s looking more and more like a good idea to me, too.

  27. Legisperitus says:

    Whether the President likes the Constitution or not, he took an oath to preserve, protect, and defend it. Was that perjury?

  28. chantgirl says:

    I don’t want to give the impression that I would abstain from voting or vote for a third party candidate who has no chance of beating Obama. I will vote for Romney precisely because I want Obama out of office and he seems to be the only candidate within striking range. However, I wanted to point out that the media is indeed filtering some very important information that voters need to make a comepletely informed decision. As Catholics who presumably are going to vote for the most pro-life candidate available, we should have our eyes wide open and hold Romney’s feet to the fire over this. Obviously Teva makes some drugs that help people, but that doesn’t mean we can ignore the fact that they make big money on a drug that intentionally kills people, and Romney should not get a pass from us pro-lifers on this just because he is a Republican and is going up against the most pro-abortion president we’ve ever had. Romney has already forced Catholic hospitals in Massachusetts to dispense the morning after pill, and I think that if pro-lifers put enough pressure on him over this, he may be smart enough to shift his stance. I’m not saying we shouldn’t vote for him; just saying we should hold him to his pro-life platform. Social conservatives should not be looked upon as automatic votes by progressive Republicans any more than minorities should be expected to vote for Democrats. I’m honestly saddened that pro-life Catholics would excuse this association of Romney’s without a fuss merely because we want Obama out of office. We need to hold our politicians’ feet to the fire no matter who they are, and to bring this full-circle, it would be much easier for us to do that if the media actually reported important things.

  29. ContraMundum says:

    Romney has so far done nothing to make me trust him with my vote. I plan to vote for the Constitution Party candidate, as I did in the last 3 elections.

    However, before some of you have an apoplectic stroke, in West Virginia 41% of Democrats preferred an unknown — who happened to be a felon still in prison — to Barrack Obama. This is in part due to West Virginia being a socially conservative state (Sen. Joe Manchin is more conservative than many, perhaps most, Republican senators), but realistically it has more to do with the fact that West Virginians see Obama’s energy and environmental policies as disastrous to the coal industry, the 800-lb gorilla in this state.

  30. PA mom says:

    Contramundum, before voting for a third party candidate, please consider the good that can occur even if fiscal conservatism is the best we get from Romney. I fully agree with Paul Ryan that a serious paring back of government and it’s cost is a moral imperative. I also think that if serious conservatives don’t remain in support of him, while placing his feet to the fire with promises of booting him out the following term, then no major party candidates have any reason to think that conservative stances will be rewarded in this country.

    Further, despite liberal family history, he himself seems to have lived a morally upright life. Perhaps he is just being sold on the idea that those morals are what is right for everyone rather than strictly for those “with religion”. In his speech at Liberty , he mentioned the study that Santorum had referenced about marriage and poverty. The case can be made that moral good is objectively good, and it sounded like that study provided him with proof of that.

    He was not my first choice, but truly, my first choice is anyone who will beat Obama.

  31. wmeyer says:

    ContraMundum, exercise of the franchise must be done responsibly. As any third party candidate can be expected to improve the chances of an Obama win, and I cannot see how, in good conscience, any Catholic can vote for O, I cannot imagine how you can reconcile your position. I’m no fan of Romney, and am utterly disgusted that the Republicans have given Obama exactly the opponent he wanted, but I consider the defeat of Obama to be our topmost priority, by a wide margin.

  32. ContraMundum says:

    How responsible would it be for me to take advice from a blog commenter?

    Be content to cast your own vote. I will not allow you to cast mine.

  33. ContraMundum says:

    I also think that if serious conservatives don’t remain in support of him, while placing his feet to the fire with promises of booting him out the following term,…

    An empty threat, and Romney knows it. Anyone who thinks there is a moral imperative to support Romney now because of Obama will find that 2016 has become “maybe the most important election in our country’s history!” by 2016.

  34. Kenneth Jones says:

    Even Daffy Duck would find this hard to believe.

  35. Facta Non Verba says:

    When casting your vote for President, please remember that the person elected will have the power to appoint judges to the federal bench at every level, up the US Supreme Court. Think about the judicial philosophy that you would like on the federal bench (strict constructionist vs. otherwise), and give consideration to which candidate is more likely to appoint judges who will adhere to that philosophy. Federal judges have lifetime appointments — we are stuck with them for a very long time. What types of judges you want on the federal bench should be one of the most important factors you take into consideration when voting for President.

  36. ContraMundum says:

    @Facta Non Verba

    That is a consideration.

    If, then, I estimate that the probability of Obama making an acceptable appointment to the federal bench at 5% and the probability of Romney making an acceptable appointment at 30%, how enthusiastic am I obliged to be about Romney?

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