Kyle Drennen is a Media Research Center news analyst and serves as a contributing writer to NewsBusters. He joined the MRC in 2007 after graduating from Providence College with a Bachelor of Arts degree in history and political science.

Latest from Kyle Drennen
September 21, 2011, 2:48 PM EDT

Reporting on President Obama speaking at the United Nations for Wednesday's NBC Today, chief foreign affairs correspondent Andrea Mitchell sympathetically declared: "Preparing for today's speech, the President was all smiles for the class photo, but while hoping to run a victory lap as the new Libyan government officially joined the United Nations....Everywhere else, trouble loomed."

Referring to the Palestinian push for statehood recognition from the UN, Mitchell described how Obama was "grappling with the same problem that has trapped American presidents for more than half a century, the Middle East." Later in the report, Mitchell cautioned: "The President could end up paying a heavy political price for supporting Palestinian rights in the past, even as he is losing support around the world for standing by Israel this week at the UN."

September 21, 2011, 12:17 PM EDT

On Wednesday's NBC "Today," co-host Matt Lauer brought on left-wing MSNBC host Rachel Maddow to address concerns of President Obama being "in danger of losing support from his liberal base." The headline on screen throughout the segment read: "Losing the Left; Can President Obama Win Back His Base?"

Maddow downplayed Obama's slipping support in the polls: "I think mostly what is happening is that the President's approval ratings are softening overall and that includes among his strongest supporters. I don't think that the White House believes they have a particular problem with the base." Lauer added: "But the fact of the matter is, you lose support among the base, what does that really mean in an election year? They have nowhere else to go."

September 20, 2011, 5:18 PM EDT

While co-host Ann Curry on Tuesday's NBC "Today" wondered if Ron Suskind's "Confidence Men" was "fact or fiction," on August 5, 2008, then-co-host Meredith Vieira touted Suskind's claim in "Way of the World" that the Bush administration's case for the Iraq war was "worse than Watergate."

Speaking of Suskind's latest work on Tuesday, Curry described how Obama administration "top officials are lining up to say they were either misquoted or taken out of context by the author." She then wondered: "Did he get the story right?"

September 20, 2011, 1:43 PM EDT

Update: Video added after the jump.

Working hard to run defense for the Obama administration on Tuesday's NBC Today, co-host Ann Curry interrogated journalist Ron Suskind on his new book critical of the White House and announced she wanted to go through unflattering parts of the book "one by one," while using Obama Press Secretary Jay Carney-approved talking points to discredit it. [Audio available here]

Curry began the interview with Suskind, author of "Confidence Men," by touting White House claims that the Pulitzer Prize winner plagiarized some background information in the book from Wikipedia: "Did you or did you not lift that passage from Wikipedia?...How do you account it for being so similar?"

September 19, 2011, 5:12 PM EDT

Talking to "Meet the Press" moderator David Gregory on Sunday's NBC Today, co-host Jenna Wolfe asked about President Obama's proposed "Buffet Rule," designed to increases taxes on the rich, which she assumed "will sit well with the American people overall."

David Gregory agreed but lamented: "...the President's got to think about what he can do to actually get some agreement with Republicans. And I don't see this getting anywhere." Gregory complained: "If Democrats are supposed to cut entitlements, aren't Republicans going to have to give at all on the idea of tax increases?... But we saw in the debt fight in the summer, Republicans would not give on taxes. So if that's the case, then Washington is just going to be mired, going nowhere yet again."

September 19, 2011, 1:05 PM EDT

In a softball interview with Bill Clinton on Monday's NBC Today, co-host Matt Lauer gushed over the former president's Global Initiative: "One of the things that's always impressed me....you're really good in a closed room. I mean you get people to commit to things, to invest money....Are you surprised at how good you are at that?"

September 16, 2011, 11:48 AM EDT

On Friday's NBC Today, correspondent Tom Costello described how "Nearly one in six Americans is living in poverty. 16 million are children. That's 3 million more than three years ago." However, nowhere in his report on the growing problem did he mention the Obama administration's failed economic policies as a cause.

Instead, Costello lamented over possible cuts to government welfare programs: "It was 50 years ago that Sergeant Shriver led President Johnson's war on poverty. Today his son, Mark, runs Save the Children in the U.S....[and] fears that programs like Head Start, which serve poor children, might face cuts in the next round of congressional budget cuts, just as more and more families find themselves struggling to put food on the table."

September 15, 2011, 1:06 PM EDT

NBC's Today touted an "exclusive" interview Thursday with Sarah Palin stalker and author Joe McGinniss, smearing the former governor with unsubstantiated allegations. NBC didn't try to prove them. They just spread them. Fill-in co-host Savannah Guthrie proclaimed: "Stunning allegations made about Sarah Palin in a bombshell book. Is she really the hockey mom she claims to be? How strong is her marriage to Todd?...Does she use her children as props?" [Audio available here]

McGinniss, promoting his newly released book that amounts to an anti-Palin screed, declared the former Alaska governor to be "An utter fraud. An absolute and utter fraud." Guthrie responded: "You call her a tenth grade mean girl." McGinniss went further: "Oh, that's – those are kind words compared to a lot of what you would hear in Wasilla today. The thing that I found, Savannah, that really surprised me, was that the people who know her best like her least."

View video after the jump

September 13, 2011, 5:34 PM EDT

In an interview with Michele Bachmann on Tuesday's NBC Today, co-host Matt Lauer actually delayed discussion of job creation as he pushed her to attack Texas Governor Rick Perry: "We'll talk about jobs in a second, but I do want to stick on this controversy over...Perry mandating vaccinations for HPV."

Bachmann had attempted to begin on the subject of President Obama's jobs plan, but Lauer quickly steered her toward Republican infighting: "You not only question the policy [of mandating the HPV vaccine], but you questioned the motivation behind it, suggesting rather strongly that this could have been an attempt to appease a big drug company, Merck, because they contributed to his campaign. So I want you to lay this out for me. Is that what you are asserting?"

September 13, 2011, 1:14 PM EDT

Appearing on Tuesday's NBC Today to promote his autobiography, left-wing filmmaker Michael Moore decried "the amount of hatred that was generated on a certain news channel and on AM hate radio" against him, insisting: "They daily encouraged people to essentially commit acts of violence against me." [Audio available here]

Moore leveled the charges in response to a question from fill-in co-host Savannah Guthrie about his 2003 Oscar acceptance speech that devolved into a rant against President Bush and the war in Iraq. He continued to defend those comments: "I said we're going to war for false reasons and there are not going to be any weapons of mass destruction....what I said was accurate and true, but it generated such an enormous amount of – to where they had to hire security for me and everything."

View video after the jump

September 12, 2011, 2:53 PM EDT

Monday's NBC Today featured co-host Ann Curry live in Tehran doing a fawning "day in the life" profile of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. At one point, Curry noted the dictator's "grueling schedule" and wondered: "What is your primary motivation, as president? Why do you work so hard?" [Audio available here]

From beginning to end, Curry's report sounded more like propaganda on Iranian state television rather than a legitimate news story. She sympathetically declared: "A hard-driving schedule is the norm his aides say, claiming he sleeps just three hours a night and that his days often stretch to 2:00 a.m. They say even Iran's supreme leader has advised him to sleep more."

September 12, 2011, 11:12 AM EDT

Appearing on Monday's NBC Today to preview his exclusive interview with President Obama, Nightly News anchor Brian Williams revealed some of his softball questions: "I went on to ask him when he's going to channel his inner Harry Truman, as members of his base have been asking....I also asked him about all the people who voted for the man on the poster that said, 'Hope.' That answer was illuminating."  

Near the end of the segment, co-host Matt Lauer asked Williams about Obama's strategy of running against Republicans in Congress. Williams explained: "While not quite painting it as a do-nothing Congress, he's going to be running against Congress as he goes out into all these congressional districts." Lauer remarked: "Yeah, like 80% of people would like to get rid of that particular Congress." Williams added: "Yeah, 82%, I think."

September 9, 2011, 5:22 PM EDT

In a report on Friday's NBC Today, news anchor Natalie Morales profiled children who were born after the September 11th attacks and noted how celebrations following the death of Osama Bin Laden in May were "thrilling and confusing" for those children.

One girl worried: "I just don't think it's right to celebrate that somebody died, because they were all like, 'Oh, yay, he died, hooray!' But it's just not very nice to celebrate that somebody died." A boy observed: "I would celebrate a little, but at the same time I wouldn't."

September 9, 2011, 1:24 PM EDT

Throughout coverage of President Obama's address to Congress Thursday night, anchors and correspondents on both CBS and NBC gave fawning reviews of the new jobs plan, in some cases, even before the speech began. In contrast, ABC took a much more skeptical tone, with a focus on the President's falling poll numbers.  

Evening News anchor Scott Pelley opened CBS's coverage by proclaiming the President was "hanging out a 'help wanted' sign" for unemployed Americans, with chief White House correspondent Norah O'Donnell excitedly announcing moments later that Obama would put forward "an extraordinarily bold plan" to create jobs.

September 8, 2011, 5:53 PM EDT

Apparently the media civility police have become so sensitive to any slight of President Obama that MSNBC host Andrea Mitchell actually invented one such controversy out of thin air during her 1 p.m. ET hour show on Thursday. [Audio available here]

Speaking to Obama advisor Melody Barnes, Mitchell declared: "John Boehner today just slammed the President and said, you know, that the American people shouldn't be forced to watch some politician they don't want to listen to and frankly, most of them would rather watch a football game. Is that disrespectful?"    

September 8, 2011, 12:56 PM EDT

Talking to MSNBC host Joe Scarborough on Thursday's NBC Today, co-host Ann Curry fretted over a handful of congressional Republicans declining to attend President Obama's upcoming jobs speech to a joint session of Congress: "At least three Republicans are not going to be in the audience....is this disrespectful to the office of the president, Joe?"

Scarborough responded: "I don't know if it's disrespectful. I don't think it's very smart....Americans want to see these two sides working together. Now, that may not excite the base, but that's exactly where middle America is."

August 31, 2011, 12:39 PM EDT

At the top of Wednesday's NBC Today, co-host Matt Lauer warned: "Record flooding in the wake of Irene leading to new evacuations and dramatic rescues across the Northeast....As FEMA's disaster fund runs dangerously low." Moments later he announced the agency was "running into a serious money crunch because of Irene and in-fighting in Washington."

In a later report, correspondent Tom Costello singled out those responsible for the "infighting": "You can blame politics and the new budget realities. The Republican-controlled House already voted to give FEMA another $1 billion this fiscal year, but that increase is tied to budget cuts elsewhere. So Senate Democrats haven't acted."

August 30, 2011, 9:06 AM EDT

On Tuesday's NBC Today, co-host Matt Lauer began a hostile interview with Dick Cheney by running through various derisive labels for the former Vice President: "You've been called 'controversial' and 'divisive.' Some people have called you the most divisive political figure in this country in a century." Cheney simply quipped: "You left out Darth Vader."

Later, Lauer interrogated Cheney on interrogation tactics used on terror suspects: "If an American citizen were to be taken into captivity in Iran, for example, and the government of Iran....Would it be okay for the Iranian government to waterboard that American citizen?" When Cheney rejected such an action, Lauer replied: "So why was it okay for us to use what most people would say was torture against terror suspects?"

August 29, 2011, 6:01 PM EDT

Monday's NBC Today featured another preview of the upcoming Dateline interview with Dick Cheney about his new memoir, with correspondent Jamie Gangel declaring the former Vice President to be "A conservative hero to his fans, Darth Vader to his critics." [Audio available here]

On Thursday, Gangel also appeared on the NBC morning show to promote the interview, with co-host Ann Curry proclaiming Cheney to be "one of the most controversial figures of our time."

On Monday, fellow co-host Matt Lauer kept up that theme as he announced: "Former Vice President Dick Cheney speaks out about his controversial new memoir....looks back on his controversial time in the White House. In an exclusive interview he pulls no punches, makes no apologies. No one's spared, from Colin Powell to Condoleezza Rice."

August 29, 2011, 1:00 PM EDT

On Monday's NBC Today, co-host Matt Lauer introduced a panel discussion on whether media coverage of Hurricane Irene was overdone by proclaiming: "Was this storm over-hyped? In some ways, it's a one-sentence argument, this storm killed more than 20 people and 4 million people are without power, and clearly there's misery and destruction. How could it have been over-hyped?"

Weatherman Al Roker completely dismissed the notion: "You look at the predictions, you look at the track, which was right on the money. And it is a Category 3 storm. There is no – there's no argument here....The preparations –  everything that was done, I would say we should do over again if we get the same scenario." Weather Channel Meteorologist Jim Cantore chimed in: "How many more times do we have to play pictures [of flooding] in Vermont?"