Reporters ‘Feel Obligated’ to Deflect McCain Campaign Reality

Economist Dean Baker is the highlight of a Politico feature (10/29/08) asking several political commentators the question, “Is the press really biased against McCain or does poor coverage reflect the reality of his campaign?”:

No one would expect Saddam Hussein to get good press. The reality is that he was a pretty bad guy and objective reporting would show this. While the analogy is overblown, the fact is that Senator McCain supports policies that are really bad for the vast majority of the American people and has run a terrible campaign.

At the most basic level, he had been an eager supporter of the one-sided regulatory policy that allowed banks free rein to take risks with the taxpayer dollars under the “too big to fail” doctrine….

His tax policy would almost exclusively benefit the richest 1 percent of the public, and his healthcare plan seems as though it was designed by the insurance industry. His whining about Obama’s ties to terrorists and questioning of his patriotism would do Joe McCarthy proud.

While arguing that “objective reporting would show Senator McCain in a really bad light,” Baker asserts that, “if anything, he has benefited from affirmative action in reporting, because the media feel obligated not to paint such a negative picture of a major party candidate.”

Read FAIR’s recent Media Advisory: “Ayers = Keating?: Media Falsely Balance Obama, McCain Attacks” (10/10/08)