O’Reilly Cites ‘Very Accurate’ MRC Numbers in Planned Parenthood-Lion Coverage Comparison

July 31st, 2015 1:26 AM

For the second time in a week, Fox News Channel (FNC) host Bill O’Reilly turned to statistics from the “very accurate” Media Research Center to form the basis of a segment of The O’Reilly Factor concerning the major broadcast network coverage of the Planned Parenthood scandal with Thursday’s mention comparing it with the droves of coverage given to the shooting death of Cecil the lion in Zimbabwe. 

At the top of his weekly segment with FNC contributor Bernard Goldberg, O’Reilly alluded to “a comparison by the Media Research Center” that he described as having “been very accurate” about “the lion story versus the Planned Parenthood story reportage.”

O’Reilly then provided the hard numbers from the MRC (which ran through the Thursday morning newscasts): 

CBS, NBC, ABC spent a combined 30 minutes on the illegal killing of Cecil the lion in Zimbabwe by an American dentist who paid $50,000 to poach the animal. On Planned Parenthood, the nets spent 11 minutes, 13 seconds reporting on the videos combined.

Following O’Reilly’s observation that this disparity should be as “a major media story,” Goldberg responded by maintaining that the death of Cecil the lion is “interesting,” but that pro-lifers have “some justification” in raising concerns about the lack of attention given by the “big three” of ABC, CBS, and NBC to the horrifying videos from the Center for Medical Progress (CMP).

Goldberg continued by pointing out that, unfortunately, “[m]ost of the people who put news on the networks aren't pro-life” and instead are pro-choice liberals and thus “they play [the videos] down” because they “make their side look bad.” 

As for why the media have focused more on the lion, the best-selling author explained that much of the media “live[s] in New York City” and thus are “not hunters, for the most part” and “don’t like guns.” In turn, he observed that “[t]hey have more empathy for Cecil the lion who they can see and look at and see pictures of, than they do for what they would call a fetus or what would call an unborn baby.”

O’Reilly agreed, stating that he thought “the Cecil the lion story is a good story,” but stressed that there’s still room for the media to devote airtime to both topics:

I think that the poaching of animals and what they're doing to the environment and the oceans is horrible and it should be reported. I don't begrudge the 30 minutes they spent on this story, but to do 11 minutes on a shocking, and not only is it shocking in a human rights situation, but we're giving them half billion taxpayer dollars a year and the Justice Department has not said they're going to investigate, so this is a huge story about American justice, about misappropriation of funds, and about human rights and brutality among the most defenseless people.