Republicans Form 'Media Fairness Caucus' to Fight Liberal Bias

A dozen Republican members of Congress have formed the “Media Fairness Caucus,” the group’s chairman, Rep. Lamar Smith (R-TX) announced this morning on FNC’s America’s Newsroom. Smith told FNC co-anchor Bill Hemmer that the problem of liberal journalists skewing the information reaching Americans is a worse threat than “a recession or another terrorist attack,” and said his group’s goal would be to “encourage the media to adhere to the highest standards of their profession and to provide the American people with the facts, not tell them what to think.”

Newsmax’ Ron Kessler wrote about the formation of the new group yesterday: “The Media Fairness Caucus will point out unfair stories, meet with members of the media, and write op-eds and letters to the editor to highlight media bias. For the past two years, Smith has conducted his own campaign against unfair coverage in weekly one-minute speeches on the House floor. The caucus is intended to broaden and fortify the effort.”

Here are key excerpts from Smith’s appearance on the Fox News Channel Thursday morning (video here):
FNC’s BILL HEMMER: You want to fight media bias? There's a new Republican group in Congress that's gotten together to do just that. Leading the way is Congressman Lamar Smith, he's one of the leaders of this group, chairman of the Media Fairness Caucus, he's my guest on the Hill. How are you, sir? Republican out of Texas, good morning to you, sir, welcome to our show.

REP. LAMAR SMITH: Bill, good morning. Good to be with you.

HEMMER: What do you want to get out of this?

REP. SMITH: Well, we are filing the papers today to create a Media Fairness Caucus in the U.S. House of Representatives, and the purpose of this organization -- it'll start off with about a dozen members -- is not to censor. It's really to encourage the media to adhere to the highest standards of their profession, and to provide the American people with the facts, not tell them what to think....

There are a lot of members of Congress who are worried about the liberal media bias that we see every single day. You know, you've got -- the most recent poll says only nine percent of the American public see the media are objective and fair. They have a huge credibility gap, and two-to-one they think the media are liberal, not conservative.

And we've got all kinds of examples. Look at the last election where the national network news programs covered Obama and McCain but gave three times the negative coverage to Senator McCain than Senator Obama. That's just one example....

To me, the greatest threat to America is not necessarily a recession, or another terrorist attack. The greatest threat to America is a liberal media bias. And I think that because, if the American people don't get the facts, they can't make good decisions. And if the American people can't make good decisions, then our democracy is threatened....

The media have given the Obama administration a free pass. In fact, President Obama has gotten three times the positive coverage that President Bush got in his first three months in office. There's very little criticism, and you have to rely, frankly, on Fox News and a few other media outlets to get the facts to the American people. Otherwise, they wouldn't know....
Rich Noyes
Rich Noyes
Rich Noyes is the Senior Editor for Newsbusters