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
March 12, 2012, 6:29 PM EDT

[Update, 4:10 pm Tuesday: Father Grandon wrote NewsBusters to clarify his statement during the segment: "I was very clear during the interview that we convert priests have no interest in agitating for married clergy generally and that, in fact, the Catholic Church has always had married priests in her Eastern Churches, but alas, those comments were edited out.  My comment...in no way proposed that change....Yes, much was left unsaid and unexplained, but do please note that I am not on the side of the liberals!  In the end, we were happy that the editing was not as malicious as it could have been."]

On Monday's CBS This Morning, correspondent Michelle Miller highlighted one of the 77 married Catholic priests in the U.S. who converted from the Episcopal Church in recent years and boosted a favorite pet cause of left-leaning dissenting Catholics: ordaining married men. Miller trumpeted that Father Doug Grandon's example "begs the question: should all Catholic priests have the option to marry?"

Father Grandon stated that "the most we could say is that having a married priest...allows them to look and see how it would work if they wanted to change it." The morning show's religious and faith contributor, Father Edward Beck, also acknowledged that the several dozen former Episcopalian clerics are "bringing a whole liberal notion with them," but also noted one of the main reasons for Catholic clerical celibacy - that parish priests can devote all 24 hours of each day to their ministry.

March 9, 2012, 8:05 PM EST

ABC broadcasted two completely one-sided reports on Thursday's World News and Nightline on the supposed "huge spike in the number of Americans operating in the shadows, trying to take down the U.S. government even with violence," as anchor Diane Sawyer put it. Correspondent Dan Harris's main external source for his reports was a media favorite, the left-wing Southern Poverty Law Center [audio clips available here].

As she introduced Harris's first report on World News, Sawyer trumped that "a new study finds there are now nearly 1,300 militias and other extremist groups in this country, an increase from 149 groups in 2008. And one of the fastest-growing groups is called 'sovereign citizens.'" However, an examination of the SPLC's report in question find that many of these supposed "extremist" groups have been around for longer than four years, and the only change is that the leftist organization recently designated them as such.

[Update, 09:27 pm Eastern: audio added above; video below the jump]

March 6, 2012, 4:40 PM EST

Jan Crawford spotlighted Karen Santorum's "frustrations with the media" on Tuesday's CBS This Morning, adding that it was "understandable. They've been mocked by some for how they grieved the loss of their infant son." Crawford also noted how Mrs. Santorum's "life...has been under a microscope. In nearly every story written about her, it's mentioned she lived with a doctor...[who] performed abortions" [audio available here; video below the jump].

The political correspondent landed the first Big Three network interview with the GOP candidate's wife. At the end of the segment, Crawford stated that "voters tell us...one thing they like about [Rick] Santorum- he mean what he says, and he's real. And in that sense, he and his wife are very much alike." Anchor Gayle King later sang the praises of Karen Santorum: "[She] needs to do more interviews...because you come across really liking her."

March 5, 2012, 4:10 PM EST

On Monday's CBS This Morning, Charlie Rose hinted that Republicans needed to go further in decrying Rush Limbaugh's slam of radical feminist and law student Sandra Fluke. Rose asked Senator John McCain, "Are you satisfied that those Republican officials have gone far enough in condemning these statements?" McCain replied, "Oh, I'll leave that up to pundits like you, Charlie" [audio available here; video below the jump].

The morning newscast also highlighted how "seven companies have pulled commercials from Limbaugh's nationally syndicated show. Online data company Carbonite said the on-air attack crossed the line....Limbaugh had some defenders, but they were drowned out by those protests on the left, and critics on the right."

March 2, 2012, 6:39 PM EST

On Thursday's All Things Considered, Julie Rovner, NPR's resident ObamaCare flack, claimed that the U.S. Senate rejecting an amendment protecting religious liberty was "closer than the 63 percent majority that supports the contraceptive coverage requirement" from the federal government, according to the poll from the liberal Kaiser Family Foundation. The organization is an oft-used source for Rovner.

The group obtained the 63 percent figure by asking a question that omits the religious liberty component to the firestorm: "In general, do you support or oppose the new federal requirement that private health insurance plans cover the cost of birth control?" A Pew Research Poll from mid-February included that issue, and found that 48 percent supported an exemption for religious groups, versus 44 percent in support of the mandate.

March 1, 2012, 7:18 PM EST

On Thursday's CBS This Morning, anchor Charlie Rose spotlighted the apparent "the disappearance of political moderates" in Congress in the context of Republican Senator Olympia Snowe's retirement. Correspondent Nancy Cordes gushingly asked Snowe, "Was it just getting too lonely to be a moderate Republican in the Senate?" CBS also listed several "moderate" senators who are actually liberals.

After Cordes gave her report on the Maine senator's retirement, Rose turned to Democratic Senator Claire McCaskill and introduced her as "one of the few moderates left on Capitol Hill." In reality, McCaskill is a solid liberal, given her low rating by the American Conservative Union and her high rating from the left-leaning Americans For Democratic Action.

February 29, 2012, 12:00 PM EST

Just days after Maryland's state legislature passed same-sex "marriage," the Washington Post trumpeted on its front page how a "deep in grief" woman in a long-term lesbian relationship had been denied Communion by a Catholic priest during her mother's funeral in Gaithersburg, Maryland. The woman accused the cleric of playing "politics...and you will pay dearly on the day of judgment for judging me."

It took writer Michelle Boorstein seven paragraphs to finally give a statement from a representative of the Archdiocese of Washington, who criticized the pastoral approach of the priest, but not necessarily his defense of Catholic teaching, which states that those living in mortal sin cannot approach the Eucharist. It took the journalist another four paragraphs to reproduce a comment defending the priest's actions from an anonymous blogger.

February 28, 2012, 5:52 PM EST

On Tuesday's CBS This Morning, Charlie Rose lobbed a series of questions from the left at Republican Congressman Paul Ryan. Rose wondered if the recent trend towards social issues in the Republican presidential race was "troubling." The Wisconsin Republican replied, "It's not troubling for me, and...I think that's more about the media, and maybe the Democrats, who are trying to move it in that direction."

The anchor also touted the auto bailout as an Obama administration success: "The bailout- should that be an issue, and should the voters look at Governor Romney and Governor Santorum [sic] and say, we had an economic bail-out of the auto companies and look what happened? Profits are up, and they're both doing well." Rose later asked Ryan if he thought that the apparently better economic numbers was "good news for President Obama" [audio available here; video below the jump].

February 27, 2012, 6:11 PM EST

Charlie Rose seemingly can't handle a Republican attacking President Obama, as he interrupted Haley Barbour on Monday's CBS This Morning. Rose took Rick Santorum's criticism of JFK out of context in a question to Barbour. When the former RNC head accused Obama of "forcing...abortion pills" on the Catholic Church, the anchor replied, "Wait...he [Santorum] was talking about...Kennedy, not...Obama" [audio available here; video below the jump].

Just over a month earlier, Rose took issue with Senator Marco Rubio accusing the chief executive of being "divisive." Rubio tried to use the President's State of the Union as an example, but the journalist also interrupted the Florida Republican, and touted that "I saw him honoring the military of America and a lot other things where we should be coming together. That doesn't seem to be divisive."

February 24, 2012, 3:10 PM EST

CBS This Morning on Friday boosted left-wing comedian John Oliver's smear on Rick Santorum, and conservatism in general, where he equated the GOP presidential candidate with a hardcore drug like crack cocaine: "America likes its conservatism cut with plenty of baking powder because one hit of the pure stuff, and you'll wake up with Eric Stoltz...having just plunged an adrenaline needle into your heart."

Anchor Charlie Rose praised the offensive crack, which aired on Thursday's Daily Show: "Don't you love John Oliver?" Erica Hill agreed with her co-anchor, and added, "Always gives us a good laugh. We like that." Later that morning, a post on the far-left website Daily Kos praised Oliver's entire rant as "brilliant," as it supposedly "tells the truth about what the GOP really wants to do" [audio available here; video below the jump].

February 23, 2012, 4:59 PM EST

Instead of turning to one of the GOP candidates or a campaign spokesman, Thursday's CBS This Morning thought it fit to bring on Obama campaign senior adviser Robert Gibbs to discuss the last scheduled Republican presidential debate. Charlie Rose and Bob Schieffer didn't play hardball with Gibbs, like they did with Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich, but went easy on the former presidential press secretary.

On Sunday, Schieffer interrogated Santorum over his attacks on the chief executive, particularly over the former senator's "theology" attack on Obama's environmental policies. The anchor did his best impression of a former MSNBC personality: "I've got to ask you, what in the world were you talking about sir?" Two days later, Rose pursued Gingrich for supposedly "saying that the President is not patriotic." By contrast, on Thursday, the CBS morning show host directed a vague question about the controversial abortifacient mandate to Gibbs:

February 22, 2012, 6:32 PM EST

On Wednesday's CBS This Morning, Charlie Rose promoted a talking point used by liberals, including President Obama, that Warren Buffett and other billionaires want their taxes raised. After playing a clip of Chris Christie ripping Buffett, Rose asked Jack Welch, "Do you agree with the governor of New Jersey, or do you agree with...Buffett, that there ought to be more tax on the super-rich?"

When Welch replied, "I don't feel under-taxed in any way at all," Rose insisted that "most of the people that are in your economic bracket tell me they're prepared to pay more taxes if, in fact, they could be sure where the money was going."

February 22, 2012, 12:46 PM EST

The Big Three networks all recognized the 50th anniversary of John Glenn's historic orbital spaceflight on their evening newscasts on Monday. Both NBC and CBS highlighted how there's "no certainty when the U.S. will launch astronauts again, [and] Glenn worries America may be losing its edge." But the networks failed to mention that President Obama put the decades-old endeavor in limbo, which led to the unemployment of thousands of technicians.

Brian Williams concluded his report on NBC Nightly News by noting how "it irks Senator Glenn that the manned space program is now idle. The Shuttle program is over, and the only ride available into space for American astronauts is the Russians, the former enemy that [he] was chasing into space 50 years ago today."

February 21, 2012, 4:02 PM EST

Charlie Rose sparred again with Newt Gingrich on Tuesday's CBS This Morning, hounding the former House Speaker for apparently casting aspersions on President Obama's patriotism: "By saying...that the President of the United States is running over the Constitution...you seem to be saying that the President is not patriotic. You seem to be questioning [his] patriotism" [audio available here; video below the jump].

During his two previous interviews of Gingrich on the morning newscast, Rose threw the race card at the Republican for a supposedly insensitive remark about food stamps, and hammered him over prominent conservatives opposing his presidential campaign. The anchor also highlighted how apparently "there are those who say that you [Gingrich] are angry and you want to get even with Romney."

February 20, 2012, 6:36 PM EST

On Sunday's Face the Nation, CBS's Bob Schieffer interrogated Rick Santorum over his offensive against President Obama, particularly over the Republican candidate's "theology" attack on the President's environmental policies. Schieffer seemed to channel a certain former MSNBC anchor when he asked, "I've got to ask you, what in the world were you talking about, sir?" [audio clips available here; video below the jump]

The anchor led his program with an outline of his criticism of Santorum, focusing on three recent comments from the GOP presidential candidate: "Did you hear what Rick Santorum said?...In one twenty-four-hour-period, he questioned the President's religious beliefs....said prenatal testing is really just the President's way to reduce costs in taking care of the disabled....and questioned the value of public schools....We'll ask him about all of it this morning..."

February 17, 2012, 2:03 PM EST

On Friday's CBS This Morning, Rick Santorum pushed back against Charlie Rose's interrogation about supporter Foster Friess's recent "bad off-color joke" on contraception, all but name-dropping former Obama pastor Rev. Jeremiah Wright as an example of the media's double standard on playing "gotcha" politics with Republicans, but not Democrats.

Rose initially countered, "This is not gotcha; what this is, is trying to understand exactly what Rick Santorum stands for, and what he might say or do as president." But the GOP presidential candidate wasn't having any of it: "You don't do this with President Obama...he sat in a church for 20 years, and [you] defended him- that, oh, he can't possibly believe what he listened to for 20 years. It's a double standard...and I'm going to call you on it" [audio available here; video below the jump].

February 16, 2012, 3:38 PM EST

When ABC, CBS, and NBC finally got around to covering -- after two weeks of silence -- the controversy over the Obama administration's mandate that religious institutions provide health insurance for abortifacients, sterilization, and birth control, the networks downplayed the religious freedom component to the story, casting it instead as a political dogfight between liberals and conservatives.

MRC analysts studied all 36 stories, interview segments and mentions of the HHS mandate story on the Big Three broadcast networks from January 30 through February 15. Out of the 91 talking heads who appeared as soundbites on their morning or evening programs (or a small number of guests on the morning shows), politicians far outnumbered Church officials, by a margin of 60 to 9.

February 15, 2012, 7:02 PM EST

On its Tuesday evening and Wednesday morning newscasts, CBS played up its most recent poll with the New York Times, which found that 61% of Catholics approve "President Obama's contraception policy," as a graphic on the CBS Evening News spun the recent federal government mandate that forces religious institutions to cover sterilization and birth control without a co-pay.

The left-leaning outlets' poll question, however, completely glossed over the religious liberty component to the controversy over the policy, asking only, "What about for religiously-affiliated employers, such as a hospital or university? Do you support or oppose a recent federal requirement that their health insurance plans cover the full cost of birth control for their female employees?"

February 13, 2012, 6:32 PM EST

On Monday, the Washington Post's Greg Sargent forwarded a liberal talking point, that the Obama administration's controversial mandate for coverage of abortifacients and contraception without a co-pay would be used as a "wedge issue" by Republicans. Sargent also highlighted a split inside the GOP over the so-called "accommodation" made by the President on Friday.

The writer began his article, "Birth control as wedge issue against GOP, ctd.,"on his "Plum Line" blog by forwarding the White House's own labeling about the Friday proposal: "Now that Obama has reached an accommodation on birth control that has won some support on both sides of the debate, could it now become a wedge issue against the GOP, as I speculated the other day?"

February 10, 2012, 7:20 PM EST

Julie Rovner, NPR's on-staff shill for ObamaCare, filed an unashamedly one-sided report on Friday's Morning Edition about the controversial Obama administration mandate that forces religious institutions to include coverage of abortion-inducing drugs, sterilizations, and birth control.

Rovner turned to only two individuals for her pro-mandate report: Peggy Mastroianni, general counsel at the federal government's own EEOC, an organization which recently got slapped down in a unanimous Supreme Court decision concerning the rights of houses of worship in hiring and personnel matters; and Sarah Lipton-Lubet, a lawyer for the notoriously far-left American Civil Liberties Union, who until May 2011, worked for the pro-abortion Center for Reproductive Rights.