Good Morning America

By Scott Whitlock | October 26, 2012 | 4:12 PM EDT

ABC News has mostly ignored the blockbuster revelation that the Obama White House knew, within hours, about the terrorist connection to the September 11, 2012 attack in Libya.  Instead, shows such as World News and Good Morning America have focused their attention on more pressing subjects, such as yawning dogs, "mystery monkeys" and a woman who only eats three different foods.

On Wednesday Night, World News allowed a scant 20 seconds to e-mails showing that the strike on the Benghazi embassy was, indeed, a pre-planned assault. Yet, on Thursday, Diane Sawyer devoted a minute and 47 seconds to answering this pressing question: "...We know how contagious yawns can be among people, but have you ever wondered if your dog is yawning because you did?" [See a video montage below. MP3 audio here.]

By Matthew Balan | October 25, 2012 | 4:14 PM EDT

Charlie Rose and Norah O'Donnell badgered former RNC head Haley Barbour on Thursday's CBS This Morning on Indiana Republican Richard Mourdock's strongly pro-life stance, that even children conceived in rape are "God intended." Rose strongly hinted that the media firestorm surrounding Mourdock could affect the presidential race: "Romney may be gaining support among women. And the question arises, could this Mourdock controversy impact that?" [audio available here; video below the jump]

The CBS morning newscast stood out among its Big Three peers in significantly adding to the more than seven and half minutes of coverage from the previous day. The network devoted three minutes, 6 seconds to Mourdock, which is nearly three times the one minutes and 7 seconds that ABC's Good Morning America and NBC's Today set aside to the story combined.

By Matthew Balan | October 24, 2012 | 5:27 PM EDT

NBC's Today on Wednesday glossed over the State Department e-mails showing that the Obama administration knew that the attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya was carried out by terrorists. Their colleagues at ABC and CBS also minimized their coverage of this latest development, as they boosted the latest slam on Republicans from David Axelrod and the President's reelection campaign.

But all three network morning shows cordoned off significant amounts of air time to completely frivolous and celebrity-driven news stories. Here are some examples from Good Morning America, the Today Show, and CBS This Morning:

By Scott Whitlock | October 24, 2012 | 4:28 PM EDT

An analysis by the Assocation of American Medical Colleges (AAMC)  concludes that by the year 2020, there will be a shortage of more than 90,000 doctors. The organization finds the cause, in part, to be the passage of Barack Obama's health care law. Yet, when Good Morning America briefly covered this story on Wednesday, there was no mention of ObamaCare.

Josh Elliott insisted, "A national medical group says there's currently a shortage of more than 13,000 doctors across the United States. And the group warns that over the next decade, that shortage will grow to be ten-times worse as the population ages and more doctors retire." USA Today, however, explained, "The newly enacted Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act will soon require most people to obtain health insurance, leading millions more to seek care."

By Jeffrey Meyer | October 24, 2012 | 2:23 PM EDT

**UPDATE** At 2:30 p.m. EDT, MSNBC mentioned the damaging emails for the first time, coupling it with breaking news of an arrest in the attack on our Libyan consulate.   

Following in the footsteps of its sister broadcast network, MSNBC has continued to ignore the shocking revelation that the White House knew on September 11 that the U.S. consulate in Benghazi was under a well-coordinated terrorist attack. 

As NewsBusters’ Matthew Balan noted, NBC's Today was the only broadcast network morning show this to ignore the story altogether, with MSNBC following suit by remaining silent as well throughout the day.  In contrast, both Fox News and CNN have run numerous stories Wednesday morning.

By Matthew Balan | October 24, 2012 | 12:37 PM EDT

On Tuesday evening, CBS broke wide open a story on State Department e-mails showing the White House knew on September 11 that the consulate in Benghazi was subjected to a terrorist attack, and that terrorists took credit on Facebook and Twitter. But by Wednesday, the three network morning shows weren't leaping to follow up. ABC and CBS combined devoted just over a minute to the story, while NBC completely ignored it.

By contrast, all three newscasts showed that they were more interested in helping the Democrats in Indiana, aggressively spotlighting Indiana Republican Senate candidate Richard Mourdock's faith-based affirmation that he did not support abortion even in the case of rape, that even those are children "God intended." Mourdock's "controversial comments" drew more than seven and a half minutes of coverage.

By Scott Whitlock | October 24, 2012 | 12:14 PM EDT

All three morning shows on Wednesday touted White House talking points linking Mitt Romney to a Republican Senate candidate in Indiana who, while speaking about "the horrible situation of rape," called life a "gift from God." Only one program, CBS This Morning, seemed to notice how closely this story mirrored Democratic spin.

As though he was referencing a connection to a criminal, former Democratic operative George Stephanopoulos intoned, "Mitt Romney catching some flak for his ties to a GOP Senate candidate making controversial comments about abortion and rape in a Tuesday debate." Trying to make trouble, reporter David Muir asserted that the GOP campaign is "trying to distance itself from a Senate candidate that Romney endorsed, did a TV ad for." Muir needled, "The [Romney] campaign did not say whether it would ask [Richard] Mourdock to take down this ad." CBS's Norah O'Donnell speculated that the remark could cost Republicans a shot at "control of the Senate." [See video below. MP3 audio here.]

By Geoffrey Dickens | October 19, 2012 | 5:53 PM EDT

The Big Three networks (ABC, CBS and NBC) gave the faux furor over Mitt Romney’s “binders full of women” statement in Tuesday’s debate a whopping 22 mentions through Friday morning. Yet when Vice President Joe Biden, on Thursday, told an audience member that Republican  “young guns” like Vice Presidential nominee Paul Ryan had “bullets” aimed at him the networks delivered just a scant two total mentions (on NBC and CBS, ABC skipped the gaffe entirely.)  

On the morning after the debate ABC’s Elizabeth Vargas, on Good Morning America, singled out the “binders” comment: “You remember the Big Bird line that dominated the conversations online and around the water cooler, in essence, after the first debate? Last night, it was another Romney comment, ‘binders full of women’ that caused the heat to turn on.”

By Scott Whitlock | October 18, 2012 | 12:50 PM EDT

The reporters and anchors of Good Morning America on Thursday desperately hyped Mitt Romney's assertion that, while governor of Massachusetts, he had "binders full of women" applicants. David Muir played this as a gaffe, labeling it "the binder blunder." [See video below. MP3 audio here.]

Former Democratic operative turned journalist George Stephanopoulos tried to build the remark into some sort of game changer: "We saw Mitt Romney make huge gains with women after the first debate. Democrats believe this will block that gains he's made." The "huge gains" Stephanopoulos referred to were first reported in a USA Today poll showing Romney and Barack Obama dead even with swing state women, 48-48. However, this is the first time the host actually mentioned the ominous news for the President.

By Scott Whitlock | October 17, 2012 | 12:02 PM EDT

George Stephanopoulos offered a classic case of liberal bias on Wednesday, fawning over Joe Biden and, just minutes later, grilling Paul Ryan with the Vice President's talking points. The Good Morning America host talked to the two men seeking the same job, but offered Biden this not-exactly-tough question on his debate performance: "I have to ask you about your own debate...How did you feel about it? You took some ribbing for all of those smiles and laughs."

While Stephanopoulos only gingerly mentioned Biden's "smiles and laughs," he didn't fact check the Vice President's misstatements from last week. Stephanopoulos zeroed in on Romney's claims, however. On the subject of Libya, the host pressed, "You just heard Vice President Biden say that what we saw was Governor Mitt Romney trying to politicize this tragedy." Tag teaming Ryan, the journalist said of taxes: "But as Vice President Biden just pointed out...he said that Mitt Romney didn't offer one specific idea of how he's going to pay for those plans." [See below for a video montage of the contrast. MP3 audio here.]

By Scott Whitlock | October 16, 2012 | 12:56 PM EDT

All three morning shows on Tuesday highlighted Hillary Clinton "falling on her sword" and "taking blame" for the growing scandal over Libya. But NBC and ABC avoided specifics. On Good Morning America, reporter Reena Ninan failed to press the Secretary of State on details concerning Barack Obama's role.

In contrast, CBS reporter Margaret Brennan pushed for details on what the administration knew and when. She singled out United Nations Ambassador Susan Rice and her initial claims that the murder of Chris Stevens was a result of an anti-Islamic movie: "Who briefed Ambassador Rice that day? Did you sign off on that briefing and those speaking points?" Clinton said no and curtly replied, "You would have to ask her...Everybody had the same information." Yet, according to ABC's Ninan, "...Clinton appeared to fall on her sword."

By Scott Whitlock | October 15, 2012 | 12:31 PM EDT

Good Morning America's Jake Tapper on Sunday actually raised the issue of media bias, highlighting that Mitt Romney operatives "generally think that the media is in the tank for President Obama." [See video below. MP3 audio here.] Some of Tapper's colleagues on ABC have given Republicans good reason to believe this.

The journalist was responding to weekend GMA anchor Dan Harris's question about whether the "stage may now be set for an Obama comeback narrative." Tapper replied, "absolutely" and added, "So, yes, they [Team Romney] think that, without question, the media is ready to write the Obama comeback story."