MRC Special Report: The Media's Obama Miracle

How Journalists Pretend There Aren't Any White House Scandals

A recent Gallup survey concluded that almost 80 percent of those surveyed did not have confidence in television news. Part of that distrust comes from ideological bias, and part of it comes from the media’s ratings-conscious addiction to human-interest stories and celebrity coverage. Those two trends can combine, and demonstrate a media more intensely covering fluff than the stuff of scandal.    

As the nonpartisan Tyndall Report found, networks racked up 171 minutes of royal-wedding coverage and 111 minutes of the Michael Jackson wrongful-death trial on the evening news in 2011, Obama scandal news – and hence, any notion the media acts as a watchdog or a check on government – was almost nonexistent.    

If the networks were interested in repairing their deeply damaged public image as watchdogs of government during Democratic administrations, they would stop this disturbing trend of going blind, dumb, and deaf on Democratic scandals – to the point of skipping over broadcasting their own scandal questions to the President so they can make time to talk about Dr. Seuss books.