CBS Reporter Tweets About $500 Million Taxpayer Loss on Solyndra; No On-Air Coverage Since June 1

On Friday, CBS News White House correspondent Mark Knoller reported on Twitter that Mitt Romney's campaign was "slamming [the] Obama Admin citing reports of sale of Solyndra headquarters for fire sale price of $90-million," and how "US taxpayers lost $500-million underwriting Solyndra loans." Even with this and other developments in the past month, CBS hasn't covered Solyndra since June 1, 2012 on its morning and evening newscasts.

Knoller noted in subsequent Tweets that White House Press Secretary Jay Carney had defended the federal loan guarantee for Solyndra as a "merit-based decision" during an August 2, 2012 press gaggle, after a reporter asked about an impending congressional report on the scandal. Carney also stated during the presser that President Obama "firmly believes that it is the right decision to invest in clean energy technologies."

Correspondent Jan Crawford gave CBS's last on-air mention of the Solyndra debacle on June 1's CBS This Morning, after Romney made a campaign stop at the defunct solar company's headquarters on May 31. Crawford asked the Republican presidential candidate about how he was "pretty tough on the President...about Solyndra, saying it was a serious conflict of interest. Do you think the President was corrupt?"

In an August 8 special report, the MRC's Tim Graham and Geoff Dickens pointed out the Big Three's large disparity between how they covered the bankruptcy of Enron in early 2002 and how they covered Solyndra over a similar period in 2011. The networks devoted an amazing 198 stories to Enron, often trying to connect the issue to then-President George W. Bush. By contrast, ABC, CBS, and NBC only aired 24 stories on Solyndra and minimized connecting it to President Obama.

Matthew Balan
Matthew Balan
Matthew Balan is a news analyst at Media Research Center