Rich Noyes is currently Research Director at the Media Research Center where he is co-editor of Notable Quotables, MRC’s bi-weekly compilation of the latest outrageous, sometimes humorous, quotes in the liberal media, and the Media Reality Check, a regular analysis of how major news stories are distorted or ignored.
Noyes has authored or co-authored many of MRC’s authoritative Special Reports, including: The Censorship Election: How the Broadcast Networks Buried the Bad News That Threatened Barack Obama’s Quest for a Second Term; TV’s Tea Party Travesty: How ABC, CBS and NBC Have Dismissed and Disparaged the Tea Party Movement; Cheerleaders for the Revolution: Network Coverage of Barack Obama’s First 100 Days; Better Off Red? Twenty Years After the Fall of the Berlin Wall, Recalling the Liberal Media’s Blindness to the Evils of Communism; and Megaphone for a Dictator: CNN’s Coverage of Fidel Castro's Cuba, 1997-2002.
An expert with nearly 30 years of experience studying the news media’s impact on U.S. politics, Noyes has discussed the issue of liberal bias on the Fox News Channel, CNN, MSNBC and dozens of radio talk shows, and has authored articles which have appeared in the Journal of Political Science, New York Post, Investor’s Business Daily, Roll Call and Human Events.
Latest from Rich Noyes
In covering the President’s proposed budget this week, network reporters unanimously claimed it “cut” or even “slashed” federal spending. An MRC analysis of ABC, CBS and NBC morning and evening news coverage since Monday (May 22) finds that not a single reporter ever told viewers that overall federal spending would actually RISE under President Trump’s planned budget — just not as much as forecast under the budget baseline Trump inherited from President Obama back in January.
The liberal media are up in arms over President Trump’s labeling of the investigation into Russian hacking and the 2016 presidential campaign a “witch hunt.” All three broadcast networks led their Thursday evening newscasts with Trump’s use of the phrase, with NBC’s Lester Holt saying Trump was “lashing out.” Yet long before Donald Trump arrived in Washington, liberal reporters themselves employed the “witch hunt” slogan to discredit investigations into their Democratic friends, especially Bill Clinton, Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. But now that Trump uses the same tactic, it’s somehow deplorable?
Like the rest of the liberal media elite, NBC's Today was in a frenzy over the Washington Post's charge -- denied by the Trump administration -- that the President shared classified information in a recent meeting with Russian officials. Co-host Savannah Guthrie started Tuesday's show by saying the White House was in "crisis mode," with "outrage in Washington" over the "jaw-dropping story." But five years ago, Today had a different take when the allegation was that the Obama administration leaked classified information to a pair of filmmakers making a Hollywood blockbuster (later released under the name Zero Dark Thirty) about the highly-secret raid that killed Osama bin Laden.
CNN claims it’s right down the middle, somewhere between the left-wing MSNBC and the more conservative-friendly Fox News Channel. But an MRC study of an entire day of CNN’s coverage shows the network spent almost all of its time covering the Trump presidency, with a heavily skewed roster of anti-Trump guests and on-air commentators.
Just a few days after CBS’s Stephen Colbert unleashed a vulgar tirade against President Trump, a new study has documented just how unfriendly late night TV has been to the new Commander-in-Chief. The Center for Media and Public Affairs at George Mason University counted an incredible 1,060 jokes directed against Trump during the President’s first 100 days in office. That’s more than ten times as many barbs as aimed at all Democrats — combined — during the same period (95), and considerably more than both Barack Obama and Bill Clinton received during the entire first year of their presidencies (936 and 440 jokes, respectively).
Twenty-five years ago this week, South Central Los Angeles saw six days of rioting that left 58 citizens dead, more than 2,000 injured, and more than $1 billion in property damage. The May and June 1992 editions of the Media Research Center’s MediaWatch newsletter chronicled how liberal journalists wasted little time in using the riots as an excuse to bash conservatives as racist and promote even more government spending.
President Trump is skipping this year’s White House Correspondents’ Association Dinner, but that hasn’t stopped the media from nevertheless hyping the event. At that same dinner on April 30, 2011, journalists thought it was hilarious when then-President Obama and comedian Seth Meyers lampooned Trump from the stage, while the billionaire businessman sat in the audience. The media loved it.
CBS Evening News anchor Scott Pelley is plainly the most anti-Trump of the Big Three anchormen, having gone out of his way since the Inauguration to slam Trump's “falsehoods,” even asking if the President “is having difficulty with rationality.” For taking on the President in such a direct way, Pelley has become something of a rock star among his fellow journalists.
As President Trump approaches the end of his first 100 days in office, he has received by far the most hostile press treatment of any incoming American president, with the broadcast networks punishing him with coverage that has been 89% negative. The networks largely ignored important national priorities such as jobs and the fight against ISIS, in favor of a news agenda that has been dominated by anti-Trump controversies and which closely matches what would be expected from an opposition party.
Since Saturday, when Donald Trump first took to Twitter to accuse former President Obama of wiretapping Trump Tower, the morning and evening shows of ABC, CBS and NBC have devoted 107 minutes, 33 seconds to refuting the President’s claim. In contrast, new reports from previous weeks suggesting the Obama Administration did, in fact, initiate surveillance were essentially ignored at the time.
If you ever doubted that the media see the news through a partisan prism, consider this: in less than two days, ABC, CBS and NBC devoted nearly 7 times as much coverage to Jeff Sessions meeting with the Russian Ambassador in his role as a U.S. Senator than they did when then-Attorney General Eric Holder was held in contempt of Congress in June 2012.
A new American President is always a big story, but TV news is obsessed with the Trump administration — and not in a good way. In the first 30 days (January 20 to February 18), our analysts determined that the President and his team were the subject of 16 hours of coverage on just the Big Three evening newscasts, or more than half (54%) of all of the news coverage during this period. And while most new presidents enjoy a media honeymoon, the tone of Trump’s coverage was nearly as hostile (88% negative) as we found during last year’s presidential campaign (91% negative).
An MRC analysis of labels used on ABC, CBS and NBC morning and evening news shows during the 24 hours after each of the past six Supreme Court nominations demonstrates the pattern. GOP nominees John Roberts, Samuel Alito and Neil Gorsuch were labeled by reporters as “conservative” a total of 36 times, while Democratic nominees Sonya Sotomayor, Elena Kagan and Merrick Garland were called “liberal” a mere seven times — all on CBS. In fact, there were more occasions (10) when reporters either denied that a Democratic nominee was liberal, or labeled them “centrist” or “moderate.” Republican nominees were never described as “centrist” or “moderate.”
Network reporters have barely noticed the brass knuckles threat from Senate Democrats to filibuster whoever President Trump nominates for the Supreme Court, regardless of the nominee’s qualifications or ideology. But that’s not the approach they took when Republicans blocked President Obama, then a lame duck, from picking a Justice during his final months in office.
Instead of scolding the divisive and unhelpful repudiation of a new President, the news media are enabling the sore-loser Left. But eight years ago, liberal journalists freaked out after Rush Limbaugh said of incoming President Barack Obama and his ardently liberal agenda: “I hope he fails.”
When Donald Trump announced his presidential campaign on June 16, 2015, the savants in the news media weren’t just skeptical — they were openly disdainful of the man who will be sworn in as America’s 45th President at noon tomorrow. Reporters sniffed that Trump’s campaign was a “carnival show” which threatened to turn the GOP primary race into “a joke.” CNN’s Jeffrey Toobin called Trump a “fool,” NBC’s Chuck Todd blasted him as “a political streaker,” and pundit after pundit insisted the real estate mogul had no chance of winning.
Millions of Americans will celebrate Donald Trump’s inauguration on Friday, but the vast majority of journalists probably won’t be among them — and it’s not their scrupulous “objectivity,” or a unique aversion to Trump’s personal style, that keeps them from joining the party. Reviewing the media’s inauguration coverage since 1989 finds that incoming Republican presidents receive little of the worshipful coverage that’s accompanied the ascension of Democratic presidents. Instead, journalists measure new presidents using their standard liberal yardstick.
Critics from across the media spectrum have slammed BuzzFeed for publishing something they failed to corroborate, a 35-page dossier of smarmy allegations against Donald Trump that was assembled by a firm hired to do opposition research on the GOP candidate. But on CBS Saturday morning, Slate editor-in-chief Jacob Weisberg saluted BuzzFeed’s decision to disseminate the anti-Trump hit piece: “I’m glad BuzzFeed published it because I got to read it.”
With the Democratic Party defeated, ObamaCare set for repeal, and incoming President Donald Trump poised to revoke a host of his executive orders, Obama’s actual legacy will likely fall far short of what his media fan club once imagined. But one aspect of his place in history seems secure: Barack Obama has been the lucky recipient of more biased, positive “news” media coverage than any other President in history.
The news media reward Donald Trump with a “honeymoon” as unfriendly as their campaign coverage, with journalists blasting the President-elect as a “racist,” “authoritarian” and a “demagogue,” while some cast his election as “tainted” and potentially “illegitimate” because of Russia’s hacking.