Government & Press

By Curtis Houck | September 23, 2014 | 12:19 AM EDT

Starting on Monday night, a series of town hall meetings in Ferguson, Missouri began taking place in light of the death of 18-year-old Michael Brown in conjunction with the Department of Justice (DOJ) that will be closed to the media. When it came to the major broadcast networks reporting this censoring of the press, none of them chose to cover it.

According to an article posted on MSNBC’s website, an agency within the DOJ known as the Community Relations Service (CRS) has been “working behind the scenes to cool racial tensions in the city” by coming in and closing “the meetings to the media and non-residents.”

By Curtis Houck | September 22, 2014 | 9:57 PM EDT

On Monday night’s NBC Nightly News, the program took a look at how Utah is now allowing teachers to obtain concealed carry permits to have firearms in their schools after training and continually passing background checks. As the media has done countless times, they found a way to turn it into coming across as a bad thing.

NBC News senior legal and investigative correspondent Cynthia McFadden interviewed special education teacher Casey Hanson and seemed intrigued by her decision to purchase a pistol “to defend my students” after being shaken by the tragic events at Sandy Hook Elementary in December 2012.

By Ken Shepherd | September 22, 2014 | 4:10 PM EDT

It turns out the politician who called colleague Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) "chubby" and admonished her not to lose too much weight is none other than the late Sen. Daniel Inouye. So naturally when covering the story, MSNBC.com's Michele Richinick made sure to soften the blow against the late Hawaiian Democrat by tagging him as a longtime "advocate of women."

By Curtis Houck | September 19, 2014 | 6:14 PM EDT

On Friday morning, MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski joined the Huffington Post’s Sam Stein in calling for equal news coverage if Christie is officially exonerated in numerous investigations into his involvement of the scandal known as Bridgegate to the non-stop coverage when it broke in January.

During a discussion with their panel on Friday’s Morning Joe, they discussed news that a source informed NBC News on Thursday that a federal investigation has found no evidence that New Jersey Governor Chris Christie (R) knew of or ordered lane closures on the George Washington Bridge in September 2013.

By Curtis Houck | September 19, 2014 | 9:35 AM EDT

On Wednesday night, it was reported that two Marine Corps veterans are walking from northern North Carolina to Washington D.C. and the White House to demand that President Obama take action to ensure the release of Marine Sgt. Andrew Tahmooressi from a Mexican prison. However, none of the major broadcast networks have stepped up and covered the actions of the these veterans.

One of the two veterans, retired Lance Corporal Terry Sharpe, gave an interview to Greta Van Susteren on her Fox News Channel (FNC) show On the Record Wednesday and told her that he and fellow veteran Alan Brown hope to arrive at the White House to verbally deliver the message to the President within the next seven days. As of the interview, the pair were 100 miles south of Washington.

By Curtis Houck | September 18, 2014 | 9:09 PM EDT

An enormous development in the Bridgegate scandal broke late Thursday afternoon when federal officials reported that they have cleared New Jersey Governor Chris Christie (R) of any wrong-doing relating to the closure of lanes on the George Washington Bridge in September 2013. 

When it came to the major broadcast networks covering this huge development, ABC and CBS punted on the story and refused to cover it in their Thursday night newscasts. NBC Nightly News did cover the story, however, but only in the form of a news brief that lasted for 38 seconds. 

By Curtis Houck | September 18, 2014 | 5:38 PM EDT

On Thursday morning, CBS continued to ignore key results of the latest CBS News/New York Times poll, which show President Obama’s approval rating at 40 percent and his foreign policy approval rating at only 34 percent. 

In contrast, the front-page New York Times article by Julie Hirschfeld Davis and Dalia Sussman included dire statistics about the President’s low domestic approval rating: “The results suggest a profoundly unsettled public mood, with two-thirds of Americans surveyed saying the country is on the wrong track and half disapproving of how Mr. Obama is doing his job, a negative assessment that threatens to be a substantial drag on Democrats in November.”

By Curtis Houck | September 17, 2014 | 10:56 PM EDT

The major broadcast networks on Wednesday refused to cover the first hearing held by the House Select Committee on Benghazi to begin assessing what happened in the 2012 attack that left U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens, foreign service officer Sean Smith, and CIA contractors Tyrone Woods and Glen Doherty dead.

Between their morning and evening newscasts, the “big three” networks of ABC, CBS, and NBC neglected to offer any stories on the bipartisan hearing chaired by Congressman Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.), who promised that: “[O]ur fellow citizens deserve all of the facts of what happened before, during, and after the attacks in Benghazi and they deserve an investigative process worthy of the memory of those who died and worthy of the trust of our fellow citizens.”

By Curtis Houck | September 17, 2014 | 9:13 PM EDT

On Wednesday, CBS and The New York Times made the point of omitting results from their own poll which show President Obama’s job approval at 40 percent and his approval on foreign policy at only 34 percent from the newscasts and print newspaper, respectively.

CBS This Morning and the CBS Evening News with Scott Pelley only mentioned the latest CBS News/New York Times poll in regards to how 57 percent of Americans do not feel as though the President is being tough enough in dealing with the threat posed by the Islamic terrorist group ISIS. At the other end of the spectrum, only 31 percent of those asked said they approved of his handling of ISIS.

By Ken Shepherd | September 16, 2014 | 9:04 PM EDT

MSNBC's Chris Matthews turned a September 16 Politico story about three ne'er-do-well Republican congressmen who are likely to get reelected into an excuse for a Hardball segment to hand-wring about why voters this November are likely to return them handily to Congress. Nowhere in the story, however, did any perpetually ethically-challenged Democratic incumbent get held up as a counterpoint.

By Curtis Houck | September 16, 2014 | 12:15 AM EDT

In a conversation on Twitter with Fox News Channel (FNC) contributor Richard Grenell, Boston Globe reporter Bryan Bender continued the media’s double standard of slamming then-President George W. Bush’s international coalition for the Iraq War and President Obama’s current coalition for fighting the Islamic terrorist group ISIS. 

Writing in a tweet addressed to Grenell, Bender stated that “Bush had no coalition” when going into Iraq. To that claim, Grenell cited how 48 countries were actually part of Bush’s “coalition of the willing” compared to the nine for President Obama’s ISIS coalition (as of Sunday morning).

By Curtis Houck | September 15, 2014 | 9:57 PM EDT

CBS and NBC continued to provide positive coverage of Hillary Clinton’s visit to Democratic Senator Tom Harkin’s steak fry event in Iowa on Monday night after both networks gushed over her appearance in their morning shows and NBC’s Meet the Press wondered on Sunday if she might not be liberal enough for Iowa Democrats in 2016. The nearly three minutes of coverage between the two networks was in comparison to their zero coverage of news from investigative reporter Sharyl Attkisson that aides to Clinton when she was Secretary of State engaged in a weekend meeting that included the removal of documents related to the Benghazi attacks that portrayed her in a negative light.