From ABC: A Comprehensive History Lesson in 'Name That Party'

NewsBusters posters have already given Old Media deserved grief about its reluctance to pin the Democratic Party label on Eliot Spitzer, who, as of this moment, is still governor of New York (Brent Baker on evening news show coverage; Ken Shepherd on the BBC; Shepherd on the AP). But, as blogger Ace noted last night (warning: some profanity at Ace's link), ABC has outdone the other outlets one better. ABC's "Political Sex Scandals Redux" popup slideshow has a series of 13 slides relating to current and past politicians. If Republicans are or were involved, the network, with one rare and minor exception, consistently applies the "R" label almost immediately. With Democrats, with one very old exception, the party label isn't there. Here are the specifics:

Summary:

  • Six Republicans immediately identified; one relatively obscure GOP member not ID'd.
  • Four Democratic affiliations not noted; one, involving a matter dating back a quarter-century, immediately identified.
  • One party affiliation not clear, and apparently not known.

Ace's key comments:

This is all in our minds, huh, MSM? It's all accidental, right? Then why does it keep happening, and why do you stubbornly refuse to make a simple style guide change -- requiring the party ID of any and all politicians caught in scandals upon first mention, in the first paragraph? It's because you want to preserve your freedom to continue doing this. Only Republican scandals are, in fact, Republican scandals. Democratic scandals are never identified as such, and instead are, in your "nuanced" telling, either scandals of a particular man alone or of "The System" generally.

Exactly. Cross-posted at BizzyBlog.com.

Tom Blumer
Tom Blumer
Tom Blumer is a contributing editor for NewsBusters.