FNC's Hume Chastises Media for Failing to Point Out How Clinton Fired Every Attorney

Brit Hume led his Tuesday night Grapevine segment by scolding his media colleagues for how “news stories reporting that the Bush administration had considered firing all 93 U.S. attorneys across the country failed to mention that that is exactly what Bill Clinton did soon after taking office back in 1993.” Hume explained how that was not noted, “even in passing, in front-page stories today in the New York Times and the Washington Post, or in the AP's story on the subject.”

Earlier in the FNC newscast, reporter Steve Centanni pointed out how “the White House acknowledged there were talks in 2005, just after the President won his second term, about terminating all 93 U.S. attorneys just as President Clinton unceremoniously did 1993 after he won the White House.”

I'm working on a NewsBusters posting [now online] about how the Tuesday broadcast network evening newscasts all failed to note the wholesale firings at the beginning of Bill Clinton's first term, matching a missing element in a full story on Tuesday's Good Morning America on ABC -- as recounted in a NewsBusters posting by Scott Whitlock.

Hume's “Grapevine” item in full on the March 13 Special Report with Brit Hume:
“News stories reporting that the Bush administration had considered firing all 93 U.S. attorneys across the country failed to mention that that is exactly what Bill Clinton did soon after taking office back in 1993. The only sitting U.S. attorney Clinton did not cashier was Michael Chertoff, now the Bush Homeland Security Secretary. At the time Chertoff was U.S. attorney in New Jersey and then Democratic Senator Bill Bradley of New Jersey intervened to save Chertoff's job. None of this was noted, even in passing, in front-page stories today in the New York Times and the Washington Post, or in the AP's story on the subject. By the way, the mass Clinton firings generated some news stories, some complaints from Republicans in Congress, but no congressional investigations, and not a word from Chuck Schumer.”

The March 13 front page Washington Post story, “Firings Had Genesis in White House: Ex-Counsel Miers First Suggested Dismissing Prosecutors 2 Years Ago, Documents Show.”

The March 13 front page New York Times article, “White House Said to Prompt Firing of Prosecutors,” which appears to no longer be online, at least not in its original form.

Brent Baker
Brent Baker
Brent Baker is the Steven P.J. Wood Senior Fellow and VP for Research and Publications at the Media Research Center