Tuesday, September 13, 2005

John Roberts Hearing

CNN and Fox News each ran their own articles on the John Roberts hearing. The headlines were very similar but biases can be seen within the articles with Fox being more pro-Bush/Roberts than CNN. Here are some examples:

1. CNN’s opening sentence says that Roberts “deftly sidestepped the volatile issue of abortion.” That sounds more like he was a little slippery compared with Fox’s description that paints a picture of a stronger nominee with senators out to get him. Fox said that Roberts “battled a number of senators who tried to wring out of him opinions on hot-button issues like abortion and end-of-life issues. But he stood his ground, …”

2. The only Republican mentioned by CNN is Se. Arlen Specter (PA). Fox, on the other hand, mentioned Senators Hatch (UT) and Grassley (IA), plus Fred Thompson, who is acting as the White House liaison.

3. CNN slips in a comment about the “the infamous he-said, she-said battle between Supreme Court nominee Clarence Thomas and Anita Hill riveted the nation in 1991.” Fox slips in a comment about Democratic Senator Schumer (NY): “As chairman of the committee charged with electing Democrats to the Senate in 2006, the Times reported that Schumer has used the confirmation battle to raise money for campaigns and to strengthen his standing as a party leader.”

4. CNN makes this statement:

“But Biden grew animated when he claimed Roberts was refusing to answer specifics, contrasting his responses with Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg's testimony during her 1993 confirmation.”

Fox adds more background information that is more supportive of Roberts:

“Republicans like to point out that Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg refused to answer some 60 questions during her own confirmation hearings on the basis that in doing so, she would be giving clues as to how she may rule in certain cases. Refusing to answer such questions has therefore been dubbed the "Ginsburg Rule."”

5. The following was mentioned by Fox and not noted in CNN’s article:

“Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, D-Mass., pressed Roberts about his writings on civil rights while a lawyer in the Reagan administration two decades ago. … Kennedy continued to interrupt Roberts and was told by Specter to allow the nominee to finish his answers.”

Links to the articles:
http://www.cnn.com/2005/POLITICS/09/13/roberts.hearings/index.html
http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,169216,00.html

2 comments:

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