Chronicling MSM's Coverage Of Holder's Fast and Furious Testimony

Right off the bat C-SPAN should have aired this hearing. There is absolutely no excuse not to air it on TV. Since I had to stream it online I kept my TV on DirecTV News Mix to keep an eye on the news. The only network that had consistent coverage of the testimony was FOX News. I’m not shocked at all. I didn’t see anything about the testimony on the other channels. Jeff Poor from The Daily Caller helped me keep an eye on MSNBC and he didn’t see anything. He said they were hung up on Donald Trump all day. I was informed by a friend on Twitter, Doug Mataconis, that the hearing was discussed on The Situation Room on CNN for about 15 minutes. “Special Report” and The FOX Report both started off with Mr. Holder’s testimony.

Before I continue I noticed some friends on Twitter growing upset that headlines were partisan. The MSM was right: This was a partisan fight and every single Democrat coddled Mr. Holder. The Republicans were the only ones to demand withheld documents and answers from Mr. Holder.

Right after the testimony ended I began searching for coverage of the hearing on Google. First stop was Associated Press. Remember: If the AP doesn’t write anything on Fast & Furious more than likely the rest of the media won’t mention it. Pete Yost did write about the testimony, but hat’s where the excitement ends. Again, he distorts information to favor Mr. Holder and the Department of Justice. Mr. Yost fails to mention the subpoena was issued October 12, 2011. That’s 4 months ago. That is plenty of time to go through the hoops to release the documents. Mr. Yost says, “Though neither side said so, negotiations are almost certain to be the next step.” If you watched the testimony do you honestly think Mr. Issa or Mr. Holder will negotiate? Didn’t think so. Mr. Issa won’t accept anything less than the documents he needs. Then Mr. Yost describes a few dialogues, but doesn’t bother to get down to nitty gritty of the testimony.

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The article at FOX News was more straight to the point. It didn’t bother with the stuff that wasn’t about Operation Fast & Furious. Also, right after the testimony the website had it as their main story.

Reuters had a decent article right after the hearing. They even mentioned the $25 million dollar lawsuit the Terry family filed against the government. They kept it straight to the point, non of the mumbo jumbo from the Democrats. Reuters knows the hearing was suppose to be about Operation Fast and Furious.

Ah, The Washington Post. Once again, since this would require Sari Horwitz to talk about Republicans and quite possibly Mr. Holder in a not so good light, the Post decided to use the AP article. But I will give them props. Right after the testimony they posted the article and put the link under their Top Headlines column on the front page. As of this writing it’s still under the column, but still only the AP article. Under the “Politics” section they don’t have a link to this story, but do still have the link to Ms. Horwitz’s story.

This one was the biggest surprise. I went to the MSNBC website and I saw this:

I literally spit out my Diet Coke. I could not believe MSNBC not only had it on their front page, but it was the main story! Now, they didn’t write their own story, but it’s a baby step. MSNBC actually had the testimony as their main story. I’m proud of you MSNBC.

Not long after I received a tweet from Jay Caruso with this picture:

This made me cry. Thank you so much CNN for making a story on Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry your main story. This wasn’t about testimony. This wasn’t about about papers. This story by Moni Basu was all about the wonderful Brian Terry, who lost his life by people using weapons from Operation Fast and Furious. This is what needs to be known. If the MSM would just put a face to this tragedy maybe more people would pay attention and want to know about this. Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry must not be forgotten. It’s their most popular story. People want, need to know about this!

CNN also wrote an original article. It included the Terry family lawsuit and concentrated on Operation Fast and Furious. Could this be a turning point? It was a pretty fair and balanced article offering Mr. Issa’s argument and Mr. Holder’s argument. They included Mr. Issa blasting Mr. Holder for once again dumping a bunch of documents on Congress on a late Friday night.

USA Today had an original article as well. It started off as if it would be all about Mr. Holder, but the author, Kevin Johnson, included a lot of dialogue from the Republicans. Mr. Johnson did a good job keeping it in the confines of Operation Fast and Furious. However, USA Today decided it wasn’t nearly as important as Drew Barrymore’s new movie. Nope, the movie received the big picture and story.

The Washington Times has done a decent job with Fast and Furious and they didn’t disappoint with the testimony. First off, it was the main story on their front page and they wrote an original article. I enjoy how Jerry Saper wrote out a lot of Mr. Issa’s strong arguments. Mr. Seper did include the report the Congressional Democrats released on Wednesday morning.

Good for The Huffington Post. Their story on the testimony is on the front page. Granted it’s a way down, but it is on the front page. However, the article is a complete joke. No quotes from Mr. Issa or discussion on the documents. Instead John Rudolf gives us Mr. Holder’s answers and then decides to concentrate solely on the Democrats.

My colleague John Nolte wrote an article on Politico’s lackluster coverage. You can check out his article here.

All in all I have to say I was impressed. Maybe it’s finally going to get the coverage it deserves. I won’t hold my breath, but baby steps. I’ll continue keeping an eye on the media’s coverage of this scandal. Stay tuned!

Rest In Peace Agent Brian Terry

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