Media Research Center’s 2012 Awards for Left-Stream Bias

Quote of the Year

Melissa Harris-Perry 

“The land on which they [the Founders] formed this Union was stolen. The hands with which they built this nation were enslaved. The women who birthed the citizens of the nation are second class….This is the imperfect fabric of our nation, at times we’ve torn and stained it, and at other moments, we mend and repair it. But it’s ours, all of it. The imperialism, the genocide, the slavery, also the liberation and the hope and the deeply American belief that our best days still lie ahead of us.”
— MSNBC host Melissa Harris-Perry on her eponymous July 1 program, delivering what she called “my footnote for the Fourth of July.” [MP3 Audio]

The Throwing Granny Off a Cliff Award
for Portraying Romney and Ryan as Heartless

Jonathan Alter

“What the press should be focused on is what are the consequences of repeal of ObamaCare. And the consequences, as Mike [Kinsley] just indicated, are death. Repeal equals death. People will die in the United States if ObamaCare is repealed. That is not an exaggeration. That is not crying fire. It’s a simple fact….They [the Obama campaign] need to move on to a debate about the main issue, which is ObamaCare. And they can bring death into the conversation and say, ‘No, we’re not calling Mitt Romney a murderer. What we are saying is that if he’s elected President, a lot of people will die.’”
— Ex-Newsweek senior editor Jonathan Alter, now an MSNBC political analyst, on The Ed Show, August 9. [MP3 Audio]

The Obamagasm Award

Chris Matthews

“This guy’s done everything right. He’s raised his family right. He’s fought his way all the way to the top of the Harvard Law Review, in a blind test becomes head of the Review, the top editor there. Everything he’s done is clean as a whistle. He’s never not only broken any law, he’s never done anything wrong. He’s the perfect father, the perfect husband, the perfect American. And all they do is trash the guy.”
— MSNBC’s Chris Matthews talking about President Obama on Hardball, July 17. [MP3 Audio]

The “Never Let a Crisis Go to Waste” Award
for Exploiting Tragedy to Promote Liberalism

Brian Ross

Co-host George Stephanopoulos: “I want to go to Brian Ross here, because, Brian, you’ve been looking — investigating the background of Jim Holmes here, and you’ve found something that might be significant.”
Correspondent Brian Ross: “There is a Jim Holmes of Aurora, Colorado page on the Colorado Tea Party site as well, talking about him joining the Tea Party last year. Now, we don’t know if this is the same Jim Holmes. But it’s Jim Holmes of Aurora, Colorado.”
— ABC’s Good Morning America, during July 20 coverage of the movie theater shooting. A few hours later, Ross appeared on ABC to confess: “An earlier report that I had was incorrect, that he was connected to the Tea Party. In fact, that’s a different Jim Holmes….” [MP3 Audio]

The Sandra Fluke Award for Promoting Obama’s Phony “War on Women”

Joy Behar

“People like [Missouri GOP Senate candidate Todd] Akin that think the vagina is some sort of Magical Mystery Tour and men like that are running this country…This is why I took this job. I have a job already at The View. But I feel this country is going downhill because of people like Akin and Ryan and Romney. They’re trying to kill us and destroy us.”
— New Current TV host Joy Behar, as quoted by the Boston Herald’s Megan Johnson in an August 29 article.

The Ku Klux Con Job Award
for Smearing Conservatives with Phony Racism Charges

David Chalian

“They are happy to have a party with black people drowning.”
— Yahoo! News Washington bureau chief and former political director for ABC News David Chalian talking over a picture of Ann and Mitt Romney, as caught on an open microphone during ABCNews.com coverage of the Republican National Convention, August 28. [MP3 Audio]

The Politics of Personal Destruction Award
for Ripping Romney

Charles Blow

“This is the kind of man that Mitt Romney is. This man does not have a soul. If you opened up, you know, his chest, there’s probably a gold ticking watch in there and not even a heart. This is not a person. This is just a robot who will do whatever it takes, whatever he’s told to do, to make it to the White House. And he will take whatever push in the back from whatever nasty person is pushing him and move him further in that direction.”
— New York Times columnist Charles Blow on MSNBC’s The Last Word, July 17. [MP3 Audio]

Damn Those Conservatives Award

Allison Yarrow / Ramin Setoodeh

Newsweek/Daily Beast assignment editor Allison Yarrow: “Can you imagine being that organ donor? I mean, it’s such a difficult decision to say ‘I want to give my body to someone else after I’m dead.’”
Newsweek senior writer Ramin Setoodeh: “To Dick Cheney? I would never give my heart to Dick Cheney. It would freeze over.”
Yarrow: “I would never do it. I’d say ‘give me my heart back.’ Exactly …”
Host/columnist John Avlon: “Seriously, the ill will toward Dick Cheney getting a heart transplant is stunning.”
Yarrow: “He may be one of the most evil people in the world.”
— Exchange on NewsweekDaily Beast’s daily “NewsBeast” Web show, March 26. [MP3 Audio]

The True But False Award
for Fatuous Fact Checking

Martin Bashir

“[Newt] Gingrich lies repeatedly. First of all, we know today that more people were collecting food stamps under George W. Bush than are under President Obama. So, that’s the first — something like a difference of about a half a million people.”
— MSNBC host Martin Bashir on The Ed Show, January 23. In fact, U.S. Department of Agriculture showed more than 46 million Americans on food stamps at the end of 2011, a figure 40 percent greater than the highest number of recipients recorded during the Bush years (31.98 million, in January 2009). [MP3 Audio]

MSNBC = Mean-Spirited, Nasty, Belligerent Chris Award

Chris Matthews

C-SPAN’s Steve Scully: “Is the thrill still there today?”
MSNBC’s Chris Matthews: “Well, I had, actually, if you had done your reporting over at C-SPAN, you would have checked that I said the exact same thing in 2004….I’m thrilled as I speak about it now. I think this is the great country and I’m thrilled by it and I’m willing to say this, and I meant to say as part of my reporting, because I felt it. A guy like Tom Brokaw wouldn’t have said it. I’m an un-traditional person, but I have traditional values and I love the country and I said so. Perhaps I shouldn’t have said so because I’ve given a lot of jackasses a chance to talk about it….So I hope you feel satisfied that you raised the most obvious question that is raised by every horse’s ass right winger I ever bump into. And usually they say ‘tingle,’ which tells me about their orientation, but that’s alright.”
— Talking about Matthews’ 2008 comment that listening to Obama speak sends “a thrill up my leg,” during a May 22 panel discussion at the National Cable and Telecommunications Association’s convention in Boston. [MP3 Audio]

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