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
November 1, 2010, 3:51 PM EDT

CNN led their hour-long documentary "Boiling Point: Inside the Tea Party," which aired on Saturday and Sunday, with the regular accusation from liberals that racism is "running rampant" in the Tea Party movement. Host Shannon Travis highlighted the NAACP's resolution, disgraced former Tea Party Express leader Mark Williams's self-described "foolish satire," and played up two racially-charged signs.

Before raising the racism charge, Travis raised another liberal stereotype perpetuated by the mainstream media: the angry Tea Party: "This is what you know about the Tea Party Movement: rallies like these, angry protesters demanding that lawmakers spend less of your money and spend more time adhering to the Constitution." After stating that "rallies like these across the country, don't tell the full picture" and that "there's a lot you don't know about the Tea Party movement," the CNN host stopped briefly to give some poll numbers on the partisan breakdown of the movement before proceeding to the race issue:

October 29, 2010, 4:56 PM EDT

Democratic strategist Robert Zimmerman defended View host Joy Behar on Thursday's Anderson Cooper 360: "I'm standing with Joy Behar because she nailed it when she went after Sharron Angle for the xenophobia, for the racist type of campaign she has run, and for, in fact, exploiting prejudice and bigotry" [audio available here].

Zimmerman, a one-time political analyst for CNN and a member of the Democratic National Committee since 2000, appeared on a panel with Republican pollster Kellyanne Conway, Huffington Post founding editor Roy Sekoff, and author Michael Maslansky. Midway through the segment, co-host Eliot Spitzer played a radio ad from Ralph Reed's Faith and Freedom Coalition which included the statement, "It's us versus them- big government versus a big belief in faith and freedom- Sharron Angle versus Harry Reid."
 

October 28, 2010, 7:08 PM EDT

On Thursday's Newsroom, CNN's Fareed Zakaria endorsed a predictably liberal solution to get the American economy moving again: enact more taxes and implement new government programs. Zakaria called for a national sales tax and advocated new government spending on "research and technology" and "upgrading the infrastructure." The CNN host also labeled tax cuts "bad stuff."

Anchor Ali Velshi brought on Zakaria during the last segment of the 2 pm Eastern hour to discuss his upcoming cover story for Time magazine, "How to Restore The American Dream." Velshi labeled the article a "must-read" and first asked his guest, "I overheard a conversation between you and someone else the other day where you said you don't even like using the world 'stimulus' anymore. There is an answer that doesn't emphasize consumption. It emphasizes investment. Explain that to me."

The Time editor stated that "as a society, we are over-consuming, and for the last 20 years, we've consumed more and more, not because we had any increase in wages, but because we borrowed more." He continued with his government spending recommendation and his negative labeling of tax cuts:

October 26, 2010, 8:05 PM EDT

Screen cap from video footage of assault on MoveOn.org employee outside 25 October 2010 Kentucky Senate Debate | NewsBusters.org[Update, 12:15 pm Wednesday: See below on CNN's additional coverage of the assault.]

CNN devoted seven news briefs on Tuesday to an assault on a MoveOn.org employee by Rand Paul supporters caught on camera outside the Kentucky Senate debate on Monday evening, but failed to mention a second assault on Rand Paul supporter by a booster of Paul's opponent, Jack Conway. Most of the briefs also omitted how the MoveOn employee was trying to get an embarrassing picture of Paul.

Emily Maxwell of KYPost.com reported late on Monday how "tensions flared at he senatorial candidates' debate here Monday night in two confrontations between Conway and Paul supporters, Lexington police reported. The first involved a woman who is a member of www.moveon.org and who was determined to pose in front of Rand Paul holding a sign that read 'Rand Paul Republicore: Employee of the Month.'" After detailing this first incident, Maxwell continued that "the second occurred after a Conway supporter stepped on the foot of a female Rand supporter, who recently had foot surgery, according to police. The woman was wearing a surgical boot, but after the injury, her incision was cut open. Police say she refused medical treatment and also filed an assault report."

Anchor John Roberts set the example for CNN's coverage of the incidents in his news brief six minutes into the 7 am Eastern hour of American Morning, as the video of the assault on Lauren Valle, the MoveOn.org employee played:

October 25, 2010, 6:36 PM EDT

In a Monday article, Rachel Zoll of the Associated Press played up the efforts of Catholic "theological conservatives" online who "say the church isn't Catholic enough" and are "unsettling the church." Zoll even quoted from a Vatican analyst for a heterodox Catholic publication who dubbed the phenomenon "Taliban Catholicism," with the slight caveat that "liberals can fit the mindset too." The writer, however, focused most of her attention on the conservatives.

Zoll, who berated conservative Southern Baptists as "vicious" zealots embarked on trying to "wipe out" every last liberal or moderate from their church in a January 29, 2008 article, wasted little time in her latest article, "Catholic bloggers aim to purge dissenters," in zeroing-in on her conservative targets: "Pressure is on to change the Roman Catholic Church in America, but it's not coming from the usual liberal suspects. A new breed of theological conservatives has taken to blogs and YouTube to say the church isn't Catholic enough. Enraged by dissent that they believe has gone unchecked for decades, and unafraid to say so in the starkest language, these activists are naming names and unsettling the church."

October 22, 2010, 2:00 PM EDT

CNN Graphic, 20 October 2010 edition of American Morning | NewsBusters.orgCNN continued its promotion of the left-wing agenda of homosexual activist groups by devoting five segments on Wednesday to promoting GLAAD's "Spirit Day" or "Wear Purple Day." The network promoted the organization's website for the special day, which, as anchor John Roberts described it, was organized "to show support for gay and lesbian youth and honor teens who have taken their lives in recent weeks."

Roberts highlighted "Spirit Day" during a brief eight minutes into the 7 pm Eastern hour of American Morning: "Well, if you're logging on this morning, noticing a lot of purple people on Facebook this morning, that's because today has been dubbed 'Spirit Day.' The Gay and Lesbian Alliance against Defamation is asking everyone to wear purple and turn their Facebook and Twitter profiles to purple to show support for gay and lesbian youth and honor teens who have taken their lives in recent weeks. For more information, you can visit glaad.org/spirit day." During the brief, a special purple graphic was displayed on screen.

Kyra Phillips, John Roberts's fiancee, devoted two segments to GLAAD's campaign during her two hours of CNN Newsroom. During the 9 am Eastern hour, she highlighted a taped message made by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton:

October 21, 2010, 1:24 PM EDT

On Wednesday's Larry King Live on CNN, liberal comedian Jon Stewart bashed Fox News, labeling their "fair and balanced" slogan a "complete lie." Stewart also stated that he thought the network was "wrong" and that "they've built... [a] really effective political organization," not a news organization. The comedian also lamented how Democrats have "faced a relentless campaign of hyperbole that they are tyrannical socialists" [audio available here].

Stewart appeared for the entire hour on King's program. Forty minutes in, the CNN host asked his guest, "What do you make of Fox?" The comedian, who earlier promoted his upcoming supposedly moderate "Rally to Restore Sanity," initially gave a mostly complimentary reply, though included his "wrong" label of the network, but continued with some criticism on CNN:

October 20, 2010, 2:21 PM EDT

Dana Loesch, St. Louis Tea Party Organizer; & Jeffrey Toobin, CNN Senior Legal Analyst | NewsBusters.orgCNN devoted several segments on Tuesday and Wednesday to Delaware Republican Christine O'Donnell's apparent gaffe on the First Amendment, but barely acknowledged her opponent Chris Coons's own gaffe on the amendment. Analyst Jeff Toobin spun O'Donnell's remark as demonstrating that "she didn't seem to know" the amendment. It took conservative Dana Loesch on AC360 to bring up Coons's own gaffe.

October 18, 2010, 1:51 PM EDT

The Scranton Times-Tribune on Thursday attacked a conservative organization's radio ad for supposedly spreading "bald-faced lies" about the sale of three Scranton-area Catholic hospitals, and labeled the organization "political hit-and-run artists who pervert the facts." The newspaper's attack-editorial actually glossed over what it had earlier reported on ObamaCare's effect on hospitals and ignored the original words of the hospitals' CEO.

On October 6, WNEP, Scranton's ABC-affiliated TV station, reported that Mercy Health Partners, which owns the three Catholic hospitals, was "already in talks with organizations interested in buying. Mercy Health Partners CEO Kevin Cook acknowledged on-camera that "health care reform was absolutely playing a role. Was it the precipitating factor in this decision? No, but was it a factor in our planning over the next five years? Absolutely."

The radio spot by CatholicVote.org, a political action committee whose statement of beliefs criticizes the "culture of dependency that has been caused by (sometimes well-intentioned but misguided) government programs," highlighted Cook's remark: "Mercy Hospital CEO Kevin Cook said that President Obama's health care law is absolutely playing in role in their decision to close their doors."

October 15, 2010, 8:01 PM EDT

Ali Velshi, CNN Anchor | NewsBusters.orgOn Friday's Newsroom, CNN's Ali Velshi channeled the homosexual lobby's disappointment with the Obama administration's defense of the military's "don't ask, don't tell" policy: "This unjust policy has gone on far too long in America." Velshi also stated that homosexuals "have a right to serve. They have a right to fight."

The anchor criticized the Justice Department's appeal of a federal judge's Tuesday injunction halting the military from enforcing the 17-year-old policy during his regular "XYZ" commentary. After giving a brief on the judge's ruling and the Obama administration's Thursday appeal, Velshi outlined his opposition to"don't ask, don't tell:"

VELSHI: Justice delayed is not necessarily justice denied in this case, but it is justice delayed. It's time to end 'don't ask, don't tell' now. This unjust policy has gone on far too long in America. Countries around the world allow gay troops to serve openly and just because a policy has been deemed constitutional in the past doesn't actually mean it's good policy and it certainly doesn't mean it's right.

October 15, 2010, 4:17 PM EDT

Richard Viguerie, Conservative Activst; Eliot Spitzer, CNN Host; & Kathleen Parker, CNN Host | NewsBusters.orgConservative Richard Viguerie brought his criticism of CNN's "left-of-center" bent on Thursday's Parker-Spitzer, and recommended that the network bring on more "articulate conservatives." The two CNN hosts, whom Viguerie recently criticized in a recent column, did their best to support his allegation by bringing on four liberals as guests during the program.

The conservative wrote an August 17, 2010 column in the Washington Examiner criticizing CNN for claiming that they're "playing it right down the middle," when in reality, they lean towards the liberal side. Parker launched right into addressing her guest's criticism: "So, we're going to go ahead and get the elephant out of the room, and I'm not talking about you. But you did write about me....that I am a 'pleasantly wishy-washy, mostly plain vanilla Republican.' It's hard to see your words applied when the person is actually present, isn't it?"

Viguerie replied by half-jokingly taking back his label, but immediately gave her another:

October 14, 2010, 3:35 PM EDT

CNN's Wolf Blitzer and former public television anchor Nancy Karibjanian pressed Republican candidate Christine O'Donnell during Wednesday's Delaware Senate debate. While the two pressed O'Donnell on her personal finances, her past comments on evolution, and SNL poking fun of her, Karibjanian went out of her way to note Democratic candidate Chris Coons's past as a "student pastor at Yale."

The first hour of the debate, which was held at the University of Delaware, aired on CNN starting at 7:30 pm Eastern. In her very first question to O'Donnell, the former WHYY personality raised the Republican's past financial difficulties:

KARIBJANIAN: Let's open the discussion on correcting some of the financial issues here by talk about some of your own personal financial problems, and most people know about it by now, including an IRS lien that was for about $12,000 in taxes and penalties from '05. There was the '08 mortgage default judgment on your home. You just received your bachelors degree, as you said, because it took a decade to pay off the tuition. The question, then, is, how can voters rely upon your thoughts on how to manage the deficit if you're having such personal financial issues of your own?

October 13, 2010, 3:04 PM EDT
CNN's Wolf Blitzer downplayed the straight liberal record of Vice President Joe Biden on Wednesday's Newsroom, as he compared the former senator to Delaware Democratic Senate candidate Chris Coons: "I think we'll find out that he's [Coons] very much in line with the policies of a Joe Biden...sort of a relatively moderate liberal Democrat who's traditionally got a little bit of an independent streak" [audio available here].

Blitzer appeared with anchor Tony Harris at the bottom of the 11 am Eastern hour for a preview of the debate between Coons and Republican Christine O'Donnell, in which he is serving as co-moderator. Harris asked The Situation Room host, "As you mentioned a couple of times, he [Coons] is leading this race, and- you know, it has been suggested that he would go to Washington as a rubber stamp to the policies of the Obama administration. What do we know- what do you think we'll find out about Chris Coons tonight?"
October 12, 2010, 4:17 PM EDT

On Monday's Parker-Spitzer, CNN's Kathleen Parker picked up where her co-host Eliot Spitzer left off on Friday, bashing conservatives as "fringe elements" inside the Republican Party. Parker continued the Tea Party movement was the result of the GOP "catering" to such elements and that "the kooks have come home to roost."

The pseudo-conservative columnist returned to her old habit of attacking conservatives during a panel discussion with Reason magazine's Nick Gillespie and NPR contributor John Ridley minutes into the 8 pm Eastern hour. Gillespie criticized how both Republicans and Democrats handled the past decade: "It's really awful, and we had- you know, six years of Republican rule, which was awful and disastrous on every level, and everything since then has been equally bad." The writer continued with a commentary on the phenomenon of Republican Senate candidate Christine O'Donnell selection in Delaware:

October 11, 2010, 4:16 PM EDT

NBC's Matt Lauer questioned Carl Paladino on Monday's Today about his recent controversial remarks on homosexuality, and hinted that his comments might prompt "violence against homosexuals" and suicides of homosexual youth, such as the recent case at Rutgers. When Paladino attacked Andrew Cuomo for taking his children to a "gay pride" parade, Lauer implied that he might take his kids to such an event.

The NBC morning show led the 7 am Eastern hour with a promo on Paladino's Sunday speech to orthodox Jewish leaders: "Anti-gay? New York's Republican gubernatorial candidate stirs up another controversy with comments on homosexuality. Was he being homophobic, as his opponent claims? We'll ask Carl Paladino in a live interview."

October 8, 2010, 4:21 PM EDT
Eliot Spitzer, CNN Host; & Kathleen Parker | NewsBusters.orgEliot Spitzer returned to attacking the Tea Party and their allies on Thursday's Parker-Spitzer, lamenting that people "kind of from the fringe" like Christine O'Donnell "seem to be taking over the Republican Party." Guest Bernard-Henri Levy also joined in the Tea Party bashing, labeling the movement "really crazy" and insulted Sarah Palin as being less "American" than President Obama.

The new CNN program led the 8 pm Eastern hour with a replay of correspondent Jim Acosta's interview of Delaware Republican Senate candidate O'Donnell, which first aired earlier in the day. Once the interview finished, the former New York governor launched into his lamentation of the supposed takeover of the GOP, and invoked a past failed Republican presidential candidate as he continued:
SPITZER: Why there are so many folks like her [Christine O'Donnell] who seem to be taking over the Republican Party? I mean, this is not Bob Dole's Republican Party anymore- thoughtful, serious people. This (sic) is people who are kind of- I hate to say it, but kind of from the fringe.
October 7, 2010, 5:21 PM EDT

Chris Armstrong, University of Michigan Student Body President; & Anderson Cooper, CNN Anchor | NewsBusters.orgOn Wednesday's AC360, CNN's Anderson Cooper tossed softball questions at openly-homosexual University of Michigan student body president Chris Armstrong, and labeled him "remarkably strong" in light of attacks he received online from a Michigan state official. Cooper also stated that Armstrong "hardly seems...[to have] a radical agenda," despite his support for gender-neutral housing.

The anchor, who led the 10 pm Eastern hour with the controversy between the college student and Michigan Assistant Attorney General Andrew Shirvell, has mentioned it on five out of seven of his programs since September 28. After playing clips from his interviews with Shirvell and his boss, Michigan Attorney General Mike Cox, Cooper continued with his pre-recorded interview with Armstrong. He began with a sympathetic question: "How are you holding up?" The CNN personality followed up by asking, "When you first heard that this blog had been set up- I mean, what did you think?"

October 6, 2010, 4:45 PM EDT
Eliot Spitzer, CNN Host | NewsBusters.orgCNN's new host Eliot Spitzer slammed the Tea Party movement on Tuesday's Parker-Spitzer: "I think that that piece of the Republican Party is vapid. It has no ideas....They're going to destroy our country." Spitzer also accused Tea Party members of forwarding a "Herbert Hoover vision of government...saying, we want to take away the very pieces of government that created the middle class."

The former New York governor of "Client Number Nine" infamy launched his attack on the nascent political movement minutes into the 8 pm Eastern, as he and his co-host, Kathleen Parker, discussed Delaware Republican Senate candidate Christine O'Donnell's new ad. After listing what he thought was positive about O'Donnell and her ad, Spitzer gave his "vapid" remark about the Tea Party and made his first mention of former President Hoover:
October 5, 2010, 2:57 PM EDT
Kathleen Parker, CNN Host | NewsBusters.orgOn Monday's premiere episode of CNN's Parker-Spitzer, pseudo-conservative Kathleen Parker targeted Sarah Palin, labeling her a "tease" for not announcing her candidacy for the presidency, and stated that the Republican is "also coy, which, after a little while, begins to feel dishonest." When co-host Eliot Spitzer accused Parker of being unfair to Palin, she replied, "I am not unfair to Sarah Palin."

The host devoted her first "Opening Argument" segment to the former vice presidential candidate. After her co-host called for the firing of Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner in his "Opening Argument," Parker replied, "Eliot, I want to talk about my favorite politician, Sarah Palin" and played a clip from a recent commercial made by Palin's political action committee. An on-screen graphic proclaimed, "Palin the Tease," and the new CNN host immediately launched into that theme:
October 4, 2010, 4:56 PM EDT
Lila Rose, Pro-Life Activist and Live Action Films Founder; & Abbie Boudreau, CNN Correspondent | NewsBusters.orgCNN's Abbie Boudreau omitted the left-wing ideology of discredited organization ACORN in her hour-long documentary on young conservative activists, "Right on the Edge," which aired Saturday evening. Boudreau also labeled Ryan Sorba, one of the subjects of her documentary, "anti-gay," and gave an overgeneralized account of an incident which Sorba took part in.

The correspondent profiled Christian Hartsock, who "directs films with a conservative message;" author Jason Mattera; "anti-abortion activist" Lila Rose; Sorba; and Hannah Giles and James O'Keefe, who "dressed up as a prostitute and a pimp to expose ACORN." Seven minutes into the 8 pm Eastern hour, as Boudreau introduced Giles, she noted that "there's a reason Hannah Giles became an overnight sweetheart of the conservative Movement. In September 2009, she and James O'Keefe used hidden cameras to expose ACORN." The CNN correspondent then gave a very sparse and favorable description of the group: "ACORN helps low-income people register to vote, find housing, and file taxes."