Tim Graham is Executive Editor of NewsBusters and is the Media Research Center’s Director of Media Analysis. His career at the MRC began in February 1989 as associate editor of MediaWatch, the monthly newsletter of the MRC before the Internet era.

Graham is co-author with MRC president Brent Bozell of the books Collusion: How the Media Stole the 2012 Election and How To Prevent It From Happening Again in 2016 (2013) and Whitewash: What The Media Won’t Tell You About Hillary Clinton, But Conservatives Will (2007). He is also the author of the book Pattern of Deception: The Media's Role in the Clinton Presidency (1996).

Graham is a regular talk-radio and television spokesman for the MRC and has made television appearances on MSNBC, CNBC, CNN, Fox News, and the Fox Business Channel. His articles have appeared in The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Times, National Review, and other publications.

Graham left the MRC to serve in 2001and 2002 as White House Correspondent for World, a national weekly Christian news magazine. He returned in 2003. Before joining the MRC, Graham served as press secretary for the campaign of U.S. Rep. Jack Buechner (R-Mo.) in 1988, and in 1987, he served as editor of Organization Trends, a monthly newsletter on philanthropy and politics by the Washington-based Capital Research Center.

Graham is a native of Viroqua, Wisconsin and graduated from Bemidji State University in northern Minnesota. 

Latest from Tim Graham
July 5, 2010, 11:07 PM EDT

The decline and fall of Larry King Live on CNN is depressing Washington Post TV writer Tom Shales, who lamented on Tuesday that "Larry King's show got to be an increasingly lonely outpost of humane civility in a mephitic menagerie of hotheads, saber rattlers, cretins and crackpots."

"Mephitic" is a ten-dollar word for "sulfurous stench." Shales predicted: "What we'll probably see more of in the weeks and months of remodeling ahead is more of that carping, contentious talk that thrives on competitors Fox News and MSNBC, where personalities like Bill O'Reilly and Keith Olbermann (arguably two sides of the same coin) hold forth." 

He blamed all this on...the blogosphere:

July 3, 2010, 8:25 AM EDT

One narrative the liberal media has strenuously failed to develop is the incredible irony of BP presenting itself as the greenest oil company, the "Beyond Petroleum" folks who recognized they were boiling the planet with oil. In Friday's Wall Street Journal, Mark Mills reviewed a new book, Oil, by Tom Bower:  

But the most interesting figure in Mr. Bower's narrative is not Mr. Putin but BP's Lord Browne, who understood cultural politics better than his peers. In the 1990s, BP launched what was arguably the oil industry's most successful public-relations campaign, for all the good it is doing the company now. The campaign transformed BP into a shining example of a progressive company—one supposedly "Beyond Petroleum."It is clear from Mr. Bower's account that, while BP remained first and foremost an oil company, Lord Browne drank his own Kool-Aid, basking in encomia from the media and green mavens. He gave lectures at Stanford, appeared on "Charlie Rose," cozied up to Greenpeace and promised to spend $1 billion on solar technology.
July 1, 2010, 1:10 PM EDT

TV Newser and other sites reported yesterday that MSNBC has named Time’s Mark Halperin to be its “senior political analyst,” continuing his regular gigs on the set of Morning Joe, but also adding his observations to other programming. Would that include the hard-core opinion shows like Olbermann and Maddow? Not if those stars read Halperin’s comments about our “irresponsible partisan niche media” from the Jewish newspaper Forward in 2006.

”It’s going to take citizens, whether they have strong ideological views or not, to appreciate the necessity, in a free democracy, of a powerful, responsible, unbiased press,” Halperin continued. “If the country doesn’t care if we have that, if the view of the people of America is, ‘We want irresponsible, partisan, niche media,’ that’s what we’ll have. It’s going to take consumers of news, voting through their subscriptions and their eyeballs, to have an unbiased press. Most of the trend lines are bad.”

Halperin was offering one of his occasional admissions of liberal media bias that so frustrate the left-wing blogosphere. (Typical was Salon.com's Alex Pareene, with the headline "Mark Halperin now paid to be wrong about everything on MSNBC." He contrasts him as far inferior to MSNBC's other recent addition, David Weigel.) Halperin argued in 2006 that conservative new media was dominating the discussion (which, er, made Obama's election impossible?):

June 30, 2010, 2:15 PM EDT

Larry King's announcement that he's stepping down from his perch at CNN has been declared an end to a cable news era. On The Early Show on CBS Wednesday morning, Washington Post media reporter Howard Kurtz wondered “Is there still room in an increasingly partisan cable television universe for this kind of variety show, where you talk to a president one day and Lady Gaga the next? I mean, Larry losing the ratings to Sean Hannity at Fox, Rachel Maddow at MSNBC, it's a lot more opinionated out there than Larry ever allowed himself to be.”

Signaling the end of King's long reign last month, New York Times TV writer Brian Stelter sounded a similar note: “Larry King Live is the last trace of an earlier age of cable TV, one that had little interest in the opinions of its hosts.”

King’s show is definitely not in the Hannity or Olbermann molds, but to suggest he didn’t venture an opinion would not match the record. Conservatives remember his occasional shot at “wackos” on the “far right,” especially in the Clinton years. Here’s a short listing of a few King items we published in our Notable Quotables newsletter:

June 30, 2010, 10:17 AM EDT

Fox & Friends invited me on air today to discuss how The Washington Post could run a small obituary on left-wing domestic terrorist Dwight Armstrong and describe in the headline only as a "Vietnam War protester." In 1970, Armstrong and three others bombed Sterling Hall at the University of Wisconsin, killing researcher Robert Fassnacht and injuring three others. [Audio available here]

Growing up in Wisconsin, this bombing was revisited in the newspapers every five years or so, and someone always tried to revise history to explain why blowing up an innocent man was defensible. After Armstrong died, Madison’s local alternative newspaper Isthmus defended the bombing “in perspective” again. Their feelings of being government targets were not a “paranoid fantasy,” the writer, Dave Wagner, insisted, after police shot students at Kent State and Black Panther radicals like Fred Hampton.

But even if you felt you were at war with the government, why would you blow up an innocent man? That’s simply terrorism. I imagine when Bill Ayers dies, the Washington Post will described him as an “author and educator,” not as a “bomber.”

June 30, 2010, 8:32 AM EDT

At National Review Online's The Corner on Tuesday, NR senior editor Jay Nordlinger was spurred by the David Weigel controversy and the open-mic press pounding on Sarah Palin's California college speech to suggest conservatives aren't loud or persistent enough about protesting bias against the Right: 

I think many of my conservative colleagues are far too gingerly when it comes to liberal media bias. Far too timid, delicate, and forgiving. For a long time, complaining about media bias has been seen as uncouth. It’s something we all need to learn to live with, like death, taxes, and mosquitoes. Don’t be uncool by bitching about it, man....

Conservatives should be frank and bold when it comes to the media, as to everything else. And if others say you’re tiresome or whiny or uncool...well, so be it. Did you sign up for conservatism to be cool?

June 29, 2010, 7:01 PM EDT

It shouldn't be the slightest bit surprising that David Weigel has become an "MSNBC contributor" after the Washington Post dismissed him. Since the Post announced his hiring on March 23, Weigel appeared on MSNBC 20 times -- 16 on Countdown, 3 on Hardball, and once on The Rachel Maddow Show.

While the Post hosted Weigel's "Right Now" blog, he was almost completely absent from the actual newspaper. His byline count since he was hired is....one, a snarky May 29 Style section piece on Sarah Palin's new journalist neighbor Joe McGinniss suggesting she's a "hysterical" woman with an "ability to incite hatred." (This doesn't count after-the-story credit lines like "David Weigel contributed to this report," of which there were a handful.)

Twenty MSNBC appearances to one Post byline. It seems like he should have been paid by NBC-U the entire three months.

June 29, 2010, 2:17 PM EDT

The conservative newspaper recently made a list of the "Eight Most Irritating Liberal Celebrities." They were in order, from the top: Roger Ebert, Rosie O’Donnell, Michael Moore, Joy Behar, Janeane Garofalo, Al Gore, Matt Damon, and Robert Redford. Gore's not quite a match, since he's not an entertainer. You wouldn't call his doom-laden slide-show documentary "entertainment."

This list inspired "King One Eye" at the Daily Kos to match that effort with "The Eight More Irritating Conservative Celebrities." The writer, Mark Howard, also cross-posted at his vicious media-criticism website called News Corpse, where he posts with the byline of "Mark." He suggested conservative celebrities are all unemployed, no-talent losers: "They ought to think twice before provoking a “Battle of the Irritating Stars.” when they have a far more annoying roster of vexatious celebrities. And it is notable that most of their idols are rejects who have no current career opportunities save for appearances on Fox News and at Tea Parties." The list:

June 28, 2010, 2:53 PM EDT

Are the Elena Kagan confirmation hearings an occasion for media explanation...or celebration? The Washington Post Express tabloid ran this headline Monday: "Kagan's Big Day Finally Arrives." The copy underneath by AP reporter Nancy Benac sounds like a proud mother more than an objective journalist. She suggested "it may be her own words that best explain her success at charting an undeviating course to the front steps of the high court." She elaborated about Kagan's career, in sympathetic tones: 

She's excelled by dint of hard work, smarts and what she describes as good "situation sense" - the ability to size up her surroundings and figure out what truly matters, as she put it during confirmation hearings for her last job, as President Barack Obama's solicitor general, the government's top lawyer.It's what allowed Kagan to channel the thinking of legal giant Thurgood Marshall when she was a "27-year-old pipsqueak" clerk to the justice.It's what allowed Kagan to navigate through the land mines of government policy on abortion, tobacco and other contentious issues as an adviser to President Bill Clinton.
June 28, 2010, 8:16 AM EDT

On the day confirmation hearings begin for Obama Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan, The Washington Post stresses on the front page that Kagan has been an "elusive GOP target." The Post website summarized: "Republicans have struggled to find a compelling line of attack to take against the Supreme Court nominee. But their efforts have largely failed."

When Republicans nominate a Supreme Court justice, it's the liberal media that aids their favorite activists in creating "compelling lines of attack." But when Democrats do it, the journalists not only skip over the attacks, they also praise the Democrats for their political skills. Post reporters Anne Kornblut and Paul Kane suggested that the oil spill and the McChrystal hubbub have pushed Kagan out of attention, but also lauded the "skilled operatives" of Team Obama:  

But it is also a measure of how skilled operatives have become at managing the process -- and choosing nominees who are notable in part for their political blandness.... 

June 28, 2010, 6:10 AM EDT

Sen. Robert Byrd died early Monday. Joe Holley of the Washington Post began with a mildly surprising label for a senator who was a Bush-bashing hero of the anti-war left this decade (with a lifetime American Conservative Union rating of 28):

Robert C. Byrd, a conservative West Virginia Democrat who became the longest-serving member of Congress in history and used his masterful knowledge of the institution to shape the federal budget, protect the procedural rules of the Senate and, above all else, tend to the interests of his state, died at 3 a.m. Monday at Inova Fairfax Hospital, his office said. Mr. Byrd had been hospitalized last week with what was thought to be heat exhaustion, but more serious issues were discovered, aides said Sunday. No formal cause of death was given. Starting in 1958, Mr. Byrd was elected to the Senate an unprecedented nine times.He wrote a four-volume history of the body, was majority leader twice and chaired the powerful Appropriations Committee, controlling the nation's purse strings, and yet the positions of influence he held did not convey the astonishing arc of his life.

Holley did include his time in the Ku Klux Klan, in paragraph nine. He also wrote this sentence (perhaps this is his idea of what earned the label "conservative"):

June 27, 2010, 10:53 PM EDT
Andrew Wallenstein at The Hollywood Reporter suggests more than Al Gore's marriage is crumbling. Gore's cable channel Current TV is facing a dramatic makeover with an injection of MTV executives. Wallenstein tried to sugarcoat the inconvenient truths:

For all the brilliance he has displayed grasping the meteorological dynamics governing the globe, Gore has miscalculated those of a slightly less complex world: the TV business. The radical ambitions he brought to the environment didn't pan out the same way in cable; the television will not be revolutionized.

Gore tried to sell off Current to his Google pals for half a billion dollars, but that didn't take. So they're taking the content away from small-d democracy and toward the persistent formula of other youth-culture channels, loaded with young-skewing documentaries and "reality" TV:

June 27, 2010, 1:25 PM EDT

MSNBC afternoon host Dylan Ratigan took to the ramparts of The Huffington Post on Thursday and urged home owners to stop paying their mortgages as a leftist protest against a government too cozy with the bankers. The title was "They Keep Stealing -- Why Keep Paying?"  

The crisis was all Wall Street's fault, and now they're back to paying themselves bonuses after a federal bailout. So stop paying them. (Notice Ratigan doesn't suggest you protest Washington and TARP by refusing to pay your taxes.) This piece sounds like a direct-mail letter:

You didn't cause this mess. They did.

Now you are struggling to make the same payments on this mortgage on your now overpriced home even in light of a crashing economy and massive deflation, all while the government does everything in its power to help Wall St. keep the bonuses coming.

Well, it is becoming time to take matters into your own hands... I suggest that you call your lender and tell them if they don't lower you mortgage by at least 20%, you are walking away. And if they don't agree, you need to consider walking away.

June 27, 2010, 8:38 AM EDT

Naturally, Kathleen Parker used her Sunday space on the Washington Post to do what every other Parker column in The Washington Post has sought to do: prepare for the next career step. That would mean proclaiming her humility, shock and/or horror that she would get a nightly prime time hour on CNN, defending/excusing Eliot Spitzer, and declaring that she’s keeping her syndicated column (after all, the ratings might not be promising). Her tender solicitations for Spitzer and his genius in tackling Wall Street are the pink-nausea-pill part:

He was prescient about Wall Street, in other words, long before the recent financial crisis. Who wouldn't be interested in what he has to say about financial reform today?

I'm not defending Spitzer or condoning his behavior. [Ahem, yes, you are.] Ultimately, I decided that his obvious intelligence, insights and potential contributions outweighed his other record. As far as I'm concerned, especially given that he has resigned from public office, the flaws that brought Spitzer down are between him and his family. Like most Americans, I believe in redemption.

In the Parker career plan, then, this is the motto: I don’t believe in the creepy G-O-D people who are ruining the Republican Party with their “oogedy-boogedy armband religion” of redemption, but I do believe in the redemption of people who can be my meal ticket on CNN at "almost $700,000 a year."

June 26, 2010, 10:23 PM EDT

While the television networks were doing an Obama Superiority Dance, proclaiming the president's firing Gen. Stanley McChrystal and replacing him with Gen. David Petraeus was "brilliant," something was missing in the coverage. That was a sense that if Petraeus is universally honored as the savior of Iraq, why do the networks all forget it was Obama and Biden who suggested Petraeus and his surge was a bad idea a few years ago?

On NBC, Chuck Todd was promoting it as a "commander-in-chief moment." Mr. Todd, please read a piece of this Meet the Press interview from September 7, 2008, with appreciation for fill-in host Tom Brokaw actually pushing new V.P. nominee Joe Biden about whether the surge and its architect deserved any credit for improvements in Iraq. Biden didn't want to cry uncle:

BROKAW: Here you were, just one year ago, on Meet the Press. This was your take on the surge at that time, so let's listen to that, Senator. "I mean, the truth of the matter is this administration's policy and the surge are a failure," you said, "and that the surge, which was supposed to stop sectarian violence and - long enough to give political reconciliation, there has been no political reconciliation."

June 26, 2010, 7:59 AM EDT

In the Saturday Washington Post, media reporter Howard Kurtz wrote up the resignation of blogger David Weigel, whose disgust for conservatives was too much for the Post to defend for a man hired to cover conservatives. Post executive editor Marcus Brauchli lamented "we can't have any tolerance for the perception that people are conflicted or bring a bias to their work."

Everyone brings some bias to their work, and some Post reporters bring plenty. I'd guess he means that the Post couldn't have the perception that a reporter/blogger viscerally hates the people he's supposed to cover, and wants some of them dead. Brauchli bristled at the idea that the Post didn't exactly take a hard look at Weigel's writings before hiring:  

Asked about Weigel's strong views about some conservatives, Brauchli said: "We don't have the resources or ability to do Supreme Court justice-type investigations into people's backgrounds. We will have to be more careful in the future."

June 25, 2010, 3:23 PM EDT

The idea that Washington Post writer David Weigel was supposed to be a conservative -- and not merely someone reporting on the conservative movement -- was clearly not based on a review of Weigel's output. Weigel didn't just deconstruct conservatives for the Post, but was also presented twice recently by National Public Radio as a wise man assessing the fringiness of conservatives. Last October, they wanted to know how strange Fox News was, and whether they could be blamed for Tea Party protests. Weigel called their influence "massive." Weigel typically suggested Fox and Glenn Beck were not "realistic" in painting President Obama as connected to ACORN and the SEIU.

On NPR's Fresh Air on February 23, before he joined the Post, Weigel reported on CPAC and the Tea Party and embraced host Terry Gross's idea that conservatives shouldn't be big fans of government-enhancing Dick Cheney: 

GROSS: So if the conservative movement is glad that Bush isn't around anymore, and if they think that he embraced big government, why was Dick Cheney such a rock star at CPAC? I mean, if anything, Cheney is the person most responsible for the expansion of the powers of the executive branch.

WEIGEL: Well...

June 25, 2010, 7:51 AM EDT

Glenn Reynolds at Instapundit mocked the curious turn of phrase National Public Radio Senior Washington Editor Ron Elving used on his Watching Washington blog to defend a recent NPR survey showing dire straits for the Democrats in the fall.

Beneath the surface, the NPR poll was all about the tyranny of constituency, the down and dirty of serving the folks back home. House districts (and states' legislative districts) tend to be intricately drawn demarcations of the folks back home...

That’s why the NPR survey, done by Democratic pollster Stan Greenberg and Republican counterpart Glen Bolger, focused on the 60 Democratic districts likeliest to be lost to Republicans this fall.

The NPR survey also included ten marginal GOP districts that Obama won in 2008. What they found in these 70 districts was that respondents favored Republicans over Democrats, 49 to 41, and President Obama drew 40 percent approval and 54 percent disapproval. No wonder NPR-loving liberals were unhappy.

Elving's "tyranny" phrase was a reflection on Joe Barton's apology to BP:

June 24, 2010, 3:40 PM EDT

One of the more annoying tics in the current bubble of national media coverage of Gen. Stanley McChrystal's truly bizarre granting of access to Rolling Stone magazine was the utter lack of any description of the magazine -- neither its ideology (hard-left) or its central focus (rock and pop music). Washington Post media reporter Howard Kurtz provided a little depth with an article on Thursday, which began:

In the summer of 2008, Rolling Stone founder Jann Wenner ended an interview with Barack Obama -- whose campaign he financially supported -- by saying, "Good luck. We are following you daily with great hope and admiration."

So Kurtz pronounced it "surprising" when the magazine was "assailing Obama from the left." But in fact, we pointed out in February 2008 that venomous Rolling Stone political writer Matt Taibbi was trashing both Obama and Hillary Clinton as "superficial, posturing conservatives." So why couldn't reporters acknowledge this was a left-wing, anti-war magazine? Wouldn't that color how people saw a "Runaway General" controversy?

June 24, 2010, 8:36 AM EDT

The Washington Post Style section promised an article on CNN's new Eliot Spitzer-Kathleen Parker chat show with this front-page blurb: "Odd couple on CNN: New show pairs a conservative with a Democrat." Inside, in an article surprisingly shy on her typical snark, TV columnist Lisa de Moraes also described the pairing as the "disgraced/rehabbed former governor Eliot Spitzer, the New York Democrat" vs. "Pulitzer-prize winning conservative columnist Kathleen Parker," syndicated by the Washington Post Writers Group (this could explain the lack of snark against Parker, if not Spitzer.)

The TV columnist made no attempt to assess whether conservatives felt she was one of them (they don't). She did see this as a turnabout for "Crossfire"-canceling CNN president Jon Klein, but she reproduced his sales chat without much objection:

In an interview with The TV Column, Klein said that Spitzer and Parker "can address an appetite that is not being satisfied now -- the 99 percent of the country not watching" the other 8 o'clock cable news shows.

"We'd like to begin the long, slow, steady process of reaching the underserved....We think America's ready for that....I can't think of two people better suited than these super-intelligent, ultra-opinionated but rational individuals."