CNN: Kilpatrick a Democrat; MSNBC, Fox Left Out Party Label During News Conference

Update below.

Earlier today, Democratic Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick conducted a news conference with his lawyer wherein he gave a brief statement pledging to stay in office and fight the perjury charges leveled against him. As Detroit Free Press columnist Bill McGraw noted today, Kilpatrick has the dubious honor of being the first Detroit mayor to be charged with a crime while in office.

That news conference happened shortly before 1 p.m. At the time I channel-surfed through CNN, MSNBC, and Fox News and I later reviewed the video from all three to confirm my observation: Of all three news networks, only CNN tagged Kilpatrick with its onscreen graphic as a Democrat (see screencap at right).

Fox News Channel labeled Kilpatrick as "Kwame Kilpatrick, Detroit Mayor." MSNBC opted for "Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick, Detroit." CNN tagged the alleged perjurer onscreen as "Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick, (D) Detroit."

Update (17:33 EDT): Perhaps there's a disconnect between the broadcast operation and the Web site, or maybe we've got a closet NewsBusters fan in the CNN control room running the text generator. NewsBusters reader Paul Head just brought to my attention a March 24 CNN.com online report --filed shortly after today's press conference and 29 paragraphs long -- that failed to note Kilpatrick's party affiliation. "CNN's Chris Lawrence contributed to this report," read a note in fine print at the bottom of the article.

Ken Shepherd
Ken Shepherd
Ken Shepherd is the Managing Editor for NewsBusters