Peter Overby filed a one-sided report on Thursday's All Things Considered about a liberal coalition's campaign against the conservative organization ALEC. Overby cited the "good government group" Common Cause without mentioning the organization's left-of-center ideology. More importantly, the correspondent failed to mention that he is a former employee of Common Cause.
The NPR journalist lined up three talking heads, who all criticized ALEC, while failing to include sound bites from defenders of the conservative group. Overby also omitted that one of the three works for a law firm that represented Common Cause.
While conservatives were shocked at a video showing liberals at a Common Cause rally suggesting Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas should have his toes cut off one by one, be lynched alongside his wife, or be put "back in the fields," The Washington Post seems to find mostly a burst of liberal pride. On Thursday's Fed Page on A-17, reporter Dan Eggen's story is headlined "Uncommon forcefulness from Common Cause." The Thomas remarks don't surface until the end, in paragraph 17. The story begins with a smile, for the nerds have gotten rowdy:
Common Cause has long been something of a nerd among the jocks. While other activists staged loud demonstrations and nervy stunts, the 40-year-old good-government group was more likely to hold a forum on filibuster reform or the vagaries of redistricting.
But suddenly Common Cause is manning the barricades, leading a rowdy campaign by liberal groups decrying the outsized role of big money in U.S. politics.