Bill O'Reilly Uses MRC Stat to Show Liberal Media 'Subverting American Democracy'

At the top of his Wednesday show, Fox News host Bill O'Reilly denounced the liberal media for "subverting American democracy." He cited a particularly glaring double standard: "You may remember New Jersey Governor Chris Christie being pounded by the national media for a controversy on the George Washington Bridge....devoting 112 minutes to the situation in the first week....But when the VA scandal story broke, there was no coverage on the nightly network news broadcast for almost two weeks." [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]

Those numbers were calculated by Media Research Center senior news analyst Scott Whitlock in a May 22 Media Reality Check entitled: "In a Month, TV News Gives Less Airtime to VA Scandal than Christie Controversy Received in Four Days."

O'Reilly went on to detail a similar disparity in print media: "...the big three liberal papers – the New York Times, L.A. Times, Washington Post – printed fifty-six stories and commentaries about Governor Christie in the first week. Fifty-six. First week of the V.A. Scandal, two stories. First week of the IRS scandal, three stories. You want media bias, there it is beyond a reasonable doubt."

Given the stunning data, O'Reilly concluded:

...corruption in the media is greatly harming this nation....There's no question the major national media in America is trying to protect President Obama....They know if they bury stories like the VA debacle, the IRS, Benghazi, Putin, whatever, that a negative perception about the Obama administration might not be formed....it is a shame that in a proud republic, in a vibrant democracy, the American press is so corrupt. It is a shame.


Here is a full transcript of the June 25 commentary:

8:01 PM ET

BILL O'REILLY: Hi, I'm Bill O'Reilly. Thanks for watching us tonight. Subverting American democracy, that is the subject of this evening's Talking Points Memo. You may remember New Jersey Governor Chris Christie being pounded by the national media for a controversy on the George Washington Bridge. A grand jury is investigating whether members of Mr. Christie's staff sabotaged traffic on the bridge to get revenge on a political opponent. The story is valid and the network news went wild with it, devoting 112 minutes to the situation in the first week, 112 minutes.

But when the VA scandal story broke, there was no coverage on the nightly network news broadcast for almost two weeks. No coverage.

When the lost IRS email story broke, just three and a half minutes combined on all the network newscasts. Unbelievable. That is a news blackout.

On the newspaper front, the big three liberal papers – the New York Times, L.A. Times, Washington Post – printed fifty-six stories and commentaries about Governor Christie in the first week. Fifty-six.

First week of the V.A. Scandal, two stories. First week of the IRS scandal, three stories. You want media bias, there it is beyond a reasonable doubt.

So, if James Madison, Thomas Jefferson, Ben Franklin were with us today, they'd be the lead guests on the Factor this evening. Because those men envisioned a fair press in America, a media that would inform the people. Giving them honest information so they could make educated votes. But that's not what we have today. And that corruption in the media is greatly harming this nation.

Again, there's no question about it. There's no question the major national media in America is trying to protect President Obama and will promote the candidacy of Hillary Clinton.

For informed Americans, the blatant partisanship doesn't have much of a effect. But for the fifty percent of us who do not pay attention, who do not know very much about their country, media bias is devastating. Because once people think that a person is bad or good, that impression usually remains.

For example, there are a whole lot of Americans who don't like me. I know it's unbelievable. They don't like me. But when we asked them why, they don't really know. They've heard things. Maybe Whoopi Goldberg said something negative.

It's the same thing with politicians. If a person doesn't pay attention, he or she often bases their opinions on rumors, innuendo, idle chatter. The national media knows that. They know if they bury stories like the VA debacle, the IRS, Benghazi, Putin, whatever, that a negative perception about the Obama administration might not be formed.

One caveat. Right now the President is being overwhelmed by bad news. The media cannot suppress it. It's all over the place. Just today the Gross Domestic Product fell to its lowest level since the recession ended five years ago. And take-home pay for American workers continues to stagnate. The partisan media can't influence that.

But it is a shame that in a proud republic, in a vibrant democracy, the American press is so corrupt. It is a shame.

Kyle Drennen
Kyle Drennen
Kyle Drennen is a News Analyst for MRC