Matthew Balan has been a news analyst at Media Research Center since February 2007. Previously, he worked for the Heritage Foundation from 2003 until 2006, and for Human Life International in 2006. He graduated from the University of Delaware in 2003.

Latest from Matthew Balan
January 12, 2012, 6:29 PM EST

Gayle King made it clear that she is in the tank for the Obama campaign on Thursday's CBS This Morning, specifically vouching that Michelle Obama apparently is "passionate," and that the First Lady is "looking forward to returning for another four years. They're going to work very hard to make that happen."

King continued tossing softballs at her admitted friend, at one point gushing, "Do you ever just sort of marvel at your life?" She completely omitted asking her guest about controversial aspects of her time in the White House, such as Mrs. Obama's travel expenses, or how the First Lady wore $540 designer sneakers as she fed the poor in Washington, DC in 2009.

January 11, 2012, 7:16 PM EST

New anchor Gayle King tossed softballs at admitted friend Michelle Obama on Wednesday's CBS This Morning. King sympathized with the First Lady over how many supposedly see her. When her guest dropped a racially-tinged charge, that "that's been an image that people have tried to paint of me since...the day Barack announced, that I'm some angry black woman," she replied, "How do you deal with that image?"

During the twelve-plus minute interview, which aired in two segments, the close associate of Oprah Winfrey also especially sympathized with Mrs. Obama over charges against her in a recent book: "I think it's frustrating for her to see so many untruths. You know, I read the book, too....and I'm thinking- well, I was there. That didn't happen, that didn't happen, that didn't happen. And she never told Carla Bruni Sarkozy that living in the White House was hell- quite the opposite is how she feels."

January 11, 2012, 11:12 AM EST

On Wednesday's CBS This Morning, Charlie Rose acknowledged the widespread spinning of Mitt Romney's "I like to fire people" remark. The anchor asked Romney, "Do you regret the firing comment because of the way it was interpreted by some?" The previous morning, Rose's colleague, Bob Schieffer, was one who spun the GOP candidate's line, claiming it was just shy of saying "Herbert Hoover is my hero."

Schieffer pounced on Romney's "firing" line during a segment with Rose on Tuesday's CBS This Morning, even after correspondent Jan Crawford noted during a preceding report that the sentence was being "taken completely out of context" by several of his Republican competitors. The "Face The Nation" host all but said that the presidential candidate had stuck his foot in his mouth:

January 10, 2012, 1:41 PM EST

Bob Schieffer slammed Mitt Romney on Tuesday's CBS This Morning for his recent "I like to fire people" line, stating that he was "looking for every way he can try to lose and drive down his percentage of victory." He added, "I guess the only thing worse you could say...when people are out of work is that Herbert Hoover is my hero or something like that. It just boggles the mind."

Right after he harped about Romney's apparent incompetence, Schieffer slipped up himself when he confused Ron Paul, one of Romney's competitors, with Les Paul, an early pioneer of the electric guitar [audio available here; video below the jump].

January 9, 2012, 3:32 PM EST

On Monday's Today, NBC's Matt Lauer dwelt on an "extremely negative" attack on frontrunner Mitt Romney from a super PAC that supports Newt Gingrich and asked the former Speaker, "Can't you already hear the ads from President Obama's team saying this is a guy whose own party members called him...a predator and ruthless?" Back on January 4, CBS similarly played up Gingrich calling Romney a "liar."

Midway through the interview, the anchor noted that the super PAC, "Winning the Future," attacks Romney as a "greedy, ruthless corporate raider who has slashed jobs for profit." He then asked his guest, "Are you completely in favor of the running of that film, and do you agree with everything it says?"

January 4, 2012, 3:09 PM EST

CBS revealed its double standard in its treatment of Republican presidential candidates versus Democratic ones on Wednesday's Early Show, as Jim Axelrod and Nancy Cordes pressed Mitt Romney about the challenges ahead in the race the day after he won in Iowa. By contrast, then-anchor Katie Couric gushed over a "humanized" and "emotional" Hillary Clinton the day after the 2008 New Hampshire primary.

After joking with Romney about his eight vote margin of victory at the beginning of the interview, Axelrod asked the former Massachusetts governor about the apparent slim rise in the number of votes he gained in the 2012 Iowa caucuses versus four years earlier: "I'm wondering just one number...six years you've spent out in Iowa, and I think you end up with 66 more votes this time than in 2008. Can you explain this challenge you had in Iowa about getting more traction this go around?"

January 3, 2012, 4:41 PM EST

CBS's Bob Schieffer led his interview of Herman Cain on Tuesday's Early Show by asking, "Why did you accept the invitation?" Cain must have been wondering that himself by the end of the segment, as Schieffer and Norah O'Donnell conducted a hostile interrogation of the entrepreneur, pressing him about his qualifications to be secretary of defense, and even asked about the state of his marriage.

The Face the Nation host, filling in as CBS transitions to its new morning show lineup, noted how someone at his network "had the idea...why don't we ask Herman Cain to come on?...Well, of all things he said, yes." Schieffer then turned to the former GOP presidential candidate and asked his "why accept the invitation" question, adding, "Do you have something you want to tell us this morning? Are you going to endorse a candidate? What brings you to television this morning?"

December 24, 2011, 5:02 PM EST

Adam Nicolson couldn't resist inserting a blast at traditional sexual ethics into an article about the 400th anniversary of the King James Bible in the December 2011 issue of National Geographic magazine. Nicolson labeled the Book of Leviticus's condemnation of homosexual acts a "troubling part of the King James inheritance: a ferocious and singular moral vision that has become unacceptable in most of the liberal, modern world."

The author devoted seven paragraphs in his article, "The Bible of King James," on the influence of the King James Bible on the non-Christian Rastafarian religion in Jamaica. He noted that "pious Rastafarians read the King James Bible every day," and contrasted the "gentle and welcoming" ambience found in the "Bobo Camp" community outside the capital of Kingston with "other Rastafarians whose style is the polar opposite of that, taking their cue from some of the more intolerant attitudes to be found in the Bible."

December 21, 2011, 12:44 PM EST

CBS's Erica Hill invoked an infamous Christmas season villain on Wednesday's Early Show, stating that "[House] Republicans...risk looking like the Grinch here four days before Christmas" for their refusal to sign onto the Senate's proposed two-month extension of the payroll tax holiday. Hill made that claim during an interview of Rep. Michele Bachmann, and pressed her about the payroll tax issue.

The anchor brought on Rep. Bachmann to discuss her presidential campaign's swing through Iowa during the lead-up to that state's caucuses at the beginning of January. However, Hill devoted the first half of the segment to the dispute over extending the tax holiday, and led with a question that included her "Grinch" label:

December 20, 2011, 6:25 PM EST

Former New York City police commissioner Bill Bratton brought his pro-gun control agenda into a segment about the FBI's latest crime statistics on Tuesday's Early Show on CBS, blaming the "the insanity of the lack of gun control laws in this country" for an increase in police deaths during 2011.

Anchor Erica Hill introduced Bratton as the "chairman of Kroll, a worldwide investigative company. He's also the former chief of police in Los Angeles, New York City, and Boston." During most of the segment, Hill and co-anchor Chris Wragge asked their guest for his take about the overall decrease in violent crime, according to the FBI statistics.

December 20, 2011, 3:52 PM EST

Tuesday's Early Show on CBS brought on PolitiFact's Bill Adair to reveal what he labeled as the "biggest lie of the year" inside politics, which was "the claim by many Democrats that the Republicans voted to end Medicare." But CBS let Democratic operatives spout that falsehood several times without scrutiny earlier in 2011.

The network did stand out in bringing on the PolitiFact editor, something ABC and NBC didn't do on Tuesday. Adair stated that Democrats "say that the House voted to end Medicare. That's not what they did. What the House did was vote to protect Medicare on people who are 55 and older, but to privatize it and restructure it...for people who are's wrong to say 'end Medicare,' and it's a...classic scare tactic that we've seen targeting the elderly for many years."

December 19, 2011, 5:31 PM EST

CBS's Bob Schieffer displayed his liberal leanings on Sunday's Face the Nation when he raised the issue of illegal immigration. Schieffer claimed during an interview of Newt Gingrich that "Mitt Romney has taken such a hard line, it seems to me, on immigration that some within the Republican Party are saying he is simply running off Hispanic voters."

The journalist asked Gingrich for his take on this claim about halfway through the half-hour long interview. Gingrich replied, "I'm not going on comment on Governor Romney," and simply recited his policy recommendations on illegal immigration. When the candidate stated near the end of his answer that "I do not believe the American people are going to send police out to round up folks who have been here 25 years," Schieffer followed up and asked, "There are 11 million of these people. I mean, what are you going to do with them? I mean, you can't build that many prisons to put them in jail....and you can't get that many buses to haul them back."

December 15, 2011, 5:03 PM EST

CBS Evening News on Wednesday hyped the "early success" of a provision of ObamaCare which allows young adults under the age of 26 to stay on their parents' health care. Correspondent Wyatt Andrews spotlighted a young woman afflicted with Crohn's disease as an example of this apparent success, all the while failing to mention the liberal agenda of a "patient rights advocate" featured in his report.

The first part of Andrews's report played as a human interest story, focusing on Caryn Powers, "one of those young adults who already benefits from the health care reform act." The journalist highlighted that "Caryn's medicine alone costs more than $3,000 a month. If she could not stay on her parents' health insurance, she says, she'd be bankrupt and unable to work as a nurse."

December 14, 2011, 4:44 PM EST

On Wednesday's Early Show, CBS somehow thought a Democratic super PAC's cynical ad aimed at discouraging Republican primary voters from voting for Mitt Romney was newsworthy. Correspondent Chip Reid outlined that Romney's French-speaking ability might be "political poison," and cited how French fries were renamed "freedom fries" in 2003 and how John Kerry was accused of looking French in 2004 [audio clips available here; video below the jump].

Fill-in anchor Rebecca Jarvis stated in the introduction to Reid's report that "something from Mitt Romney's past is coming back to haunt him...Apparently, he speaks French." Co-anchor Jeff Glor added that "apparently, speaking French is not a plus when you're running for president."

December 13, 2011, 5:56 PM EST

Tuesday's Morning Edition on NPR slanted toward TLC's controversial "All American Muslim" series by playing sound bites from two who support the reality TV show versus only one opponent. Correspondent Elizabeth Blair also failed to mention that one of the supporters works for the left-leaning Center for American Progress, while clearly identifying the opponent as being from a "conservative" group.

Host Renee Montagne noted in her introduction to Blair's report that "criticism against the home improvement chain Lowe's isn't letting up. It started after Lowe's dropped its ads from the reality TV show, 'All-American Muslim,' in response to pressure from a conservative Christian group. Now, an online petition has nearly 20,000 signatures, calling on the store to reinstate the ads."

December 12, 2011, 2:56 PM EST

ABC, CBS, and NBC's morning shows on Monday all used news briefs to highlight how home improvement giant Lowe's is "facing a backlash" after it pulled its ads from TLC's "All-American Muslim" reality TV series. All three noted that the company reacted to a complaint from a "conservative" or "Christian" group who threatened a boycott. CBS's Early Show played up how Lowe's "critics call that bigotry."

NBC's Natalie Morales stated in her brief that the chain is "sparking outrage after its pulled its ads from a reality show about American Muslims. The retail giant bowed to pressure from an evangelical Christian group, which called for a boycott against the chain of home improvement stores." Morales added that a "California state senator, meanwhile, says he is considering a boycott and legislative action if the company does not reverse its decision."

December 9, 2011, 4:14 PM EST

NPR's Yuki Noguchi and Lynn Neary completely omitted Jon Corzine's Democratic affiliation on Thursday's All Things Considered, while mentioning practically every other prominent occupation he has held- Goldman Sachs CEO, senator, governor, even "multimillionaire." On the other hand, Noguchi gave the Republican party ID of two representatives who questioned Corzine at a recent hearing.

Neary outlined in her introduction for Noguchi's report that "former Senator Jon Corzine returned to Congress...Corzine was once CEO of the most successful bank on Wall Street. He left Goldman Sachs for the Senate, then was elected governor of New Jersey." The correspondent soon added that "until late October, Corzine was the CEO of MF Global."

December 8, 2011, 7:11 PM EST

Washington Post TV columnist Lisa de Moraes couldn't resist inserting a poke at conservatives in a sarcastic Thursday piece on a recent cannonball incident involving the Discovery Channel hit Mythbusters. De Moraes emphasized how the popular series is a "darling of conservative Republicans" and overreached to connect right-leaning politics to the wayward projectile that crashed into a house.

The writer led her column, "'Mythbusters' misfires with cannonball stunt" by referencing the latest annual survey from Experian-Simmons, which included a statistic on the favorite and least favorite TV programs of "liberal Democrats" and "conservative Republicans." De Moraes hinted that the mishap was symbolic of the supposedly destructive partisanship that liberals often accuse conservatives of engaging in:

December 8, 2011, 12:35 PM EST

ABC, NBC, and CBS all reported on former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich receiving a 14-year prison sentence for corruption on their evening news programs on Wednesday and their morning shows on Thursday, but only CBS's Early Show gave his Democratic affiliation. ABC devoted only 3 news briefs total to the conviction, while NBC Nightly News and The Early Show aired full reports.

News anchor Jeff Glor introduced correspondent Michelle Miller's report on the CBS morning program at the bottom of the 7 am Eastern hour by stating that "Rod Blagojevich is paying a very high price for corruption. Is it too high? In Chicago Wednesday, a judge sentenced the former Illinois governor to 14 years in prison"

December 7, 2011, 3:59 PM EST

The Big Three network morning shows on Wednesday highlighted the upcoming sentencing of former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich, but only CBS's Early Show identified the disgraced politician as a Democrat and devoted a full segment to him. ABC's Good Morning America and NBC's Today omitted his party ID, and just gave news briefs on the convict's possible sentence.

CBS correspondent Cynthia Bowers wasted little time before noting that "the former Democratic governor was convicted on 18 counts of corruption, after being caught on a profanity-laced federal wiretap offering political favors in return for financial gain." Bowers played two sound bites from the wiretap recording, including the infamous "bleeping golden" clip from Blagojevich.