Most National Media Outlets Skip California Democratic Party Chairman's Nazi Smear of GOP

Few national media outlets were interested in focusing on how John Burton, the chairman of the California Democratic Party, compared Republicans to Nazi propagandist Josef Goebbels on Monday. Among those skipping the story were ABC, CBS, NPR, the PBS Newshour, MSNBC in prime time,  USA Today, and The New York Times. The omission should be considered especially shameless for CBS – Burton made his remarks on KCBS radio in San Francisco.

AP and The Washington Post offered tiny items of less than 150 words. (The Post headline was "John Burton went there.") NBC’s Chuck Todd threw in 20 seconds on the story on Monday’s Nightly News:

TODD: The Obama campaign got another convention headache earlier this morning when the chairman of the California Democratic Party publicly compared Paul Ryan to Nazi propagandist Josef Goebbels. The romney campaign took offense and called for a full repudiation of the remarks. The Obama campaign did repudiate the remarks but did not call on Mr.  Burton, the chairman of the California party, to resign.

Burton is the brother of the late Democratic Congressman Phil Burton (who was eventually succeeded in his district by Nancy Pelosi).

On CNN’s Newsroom on Tuesday morning, CNN anchor Ashleigh Banfield reported the remarks and added, “Obviously, a big apology since, trying to backpedal since. But this is not cool.” Political director Paul Steinhauser added, “No, not cool. The Nazi comparisons never work in politics.” Banfield then had to make it bipartisan: “You know what, I'm getting sick of both parties calling people Nazis in this party. It's stupid and sick. And they both need to lay off.”

Perhaps Banfield would like to check out CNN comparing conservative protesters of a Ground Zero mosque project  to defenders of Nazi violence.

None of these national outlets covered the Nazi reference added by Kansas delegate Pat Lehman.

Tim Graham
Tim Graham
Tim Graham is Executive Editor of NewsBusters and is the Media Research Center’s Director of Media Analysis