Erroneous attacks against the American for Tax Reform’s (ATR) Taxpayer Protection Pledge are nothing new. Liberal Democratic mega-donor Tom Steyer is funding the latest spate of misleading TV ads through his super PAC. The ad wrongfully attacks Iowa Republican Senate candidate Joni Ernst for signing the Pledge, claiming that the pledge protects tax credits for companies that send jobs overseas. Unfortunately for Iowa voters of all parties, Cedar Rapids TV station KCRG has bought the misleading ad hook, line, and sinker, claiming: “There’s at least one example of [ATR] pledge signers being pressured to oppose legislation that restricted tax breaks for multinational companies. We score this claim mostly true.”
Unfortunately striking back at such the inaccuracies is like a game of whack-a-mole. No matter how many times you hit it, it keeps on coming back up again. Errors similar to this one have been debunked by fact-checking organizations and news agencies like the Associated Press time and again. It’s absurd to say this part of the ad is even remotely true.
On the floor of the U.S. House this past week Texas Republican Lamar Smith blasted the media’s coverage of the crisis on border while citing Media Research Center's finding to bolster his case.
"The crisis at the border is a result of the president’s allowing half a million illegal immigrants to stay in the country," Rep. Smith argued, "The liberal national media also are responsible for creating this crisis. The Media Research Center found that from June 8th through July 1st, eighty-nine percent of news stories on ABC, NBC and CBS failed to mention that President Obama’s policies have encouraged the surge of illegal minors at the border…."
In 1996, the Society of Professional Journalists removed a stipulation in its ethics code holding that “News reports should be free of opinion or bias.” Earlier this year, theSPJ’s Ethics Committee released its draft of a revised ethics code which, alas, does not restore the bright-line rule against opinion and bias in news stories that was removed in 1996.
The rule, was on the books for some 70 years before being scotched. What’s more, the 1973version of the code, went on to insist that news reports should “represent all sides of an issue.” That revision of the code also contained language which emphasized the preeminence of truth and objectivity in the practice of journalism “Truth is our ultimate goal” with “Objectivity in reporting the news”another goal in service of that aim.
Over the past week, the media have been obsessively attributing the GOP’s election loss to the party’s embrace of conservatism. It began with a predictable assault on the standard bearer of conservative thought over the airwaves, Rush Limbaugh. On election night, NBC’s Brian Williams opined that Rush was a liability for the GOP. And it didn’t stop with Williams.