Amid the Democrats’ PR push for public support for their massive, multitrillion-dollar spending plans pending in Congress, network evening news has allowed them more than seven times more air time than Republicans, according to a report.
After analyzing 30 segments from Sept. 23 to Oct. 10 on “CBS Evening News,” ABC’s “World News Tonight” and “NBC Nightly News,” a report by Newsbusters — a project run by conservative media watchdog Media Research Center — found 115 soundbites from Democrats versus only 16 from Republicans on the topic of budget stories.
The report added that the evening shows did feature moderate Democrats, such as Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV), but it noted that “they were still calling for more spending.”
Out of the shows analyzed, “CBS Evening News” featured 43 Democratic soundbites and eight Republican. ABC’s “World News Tonight” highlighted 41 Democratic soundbites and only three Republican, while “NBC Nightly News” featured 31 Democratic clips with five Republican.
The report comes as Congress looks to pass two key pieces of legislation, a bipartisan infrastructure bill and a $3.5 trillion “human infrastructure” package.
The spending bill has become a thorn in the Democratic Party’s side as progressives and moderates battle over its price tag. Progressives, backed by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and President Biden, are looking to stay at $3.5 trillion, calling that number a “compromise,” while moderate Sens. Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) and Manchin have vowed not to vote for it when it comes to the floor at that price.
On Tuesday, Pelosi slammed the media for not doing a good job of “selling” the $3.5 trillion budget reconciliation, despite the back-and-forth between members of her own party.
“Well I think you all could do a better job of selling it, to be very frank with you,” the speaker said during a weekly press briefing, after being asked how Democrats can do a better job on messaging.
“Because every time I come here, I go through the list, family medical leave, climate, the issues that are in there,” Pelosi continued.
“It is hard to break through when you have such a comprehensive package. But as we narrow it down and put it out there, I think that — for example, one of the things in the bill is the continuation of the Biden tax credit, the child tax credit that is within the rescue package. That has great appeal. Do people know where it springs from? No, but it is a vast bill.”
Newsbusters’ report accused the evening network shows of “almost completely” shutting out Republican voices as news coverage has been filled with stories on the legislation and increasing the debt ceiling.
The findings sparked outrage on social media, with users accusing the networks of bias while others said it wasn’t a surprise.
Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) accused the “corporate” media of being “corrupt.”
“The corporate media is corrupt. They no longer even pretend to be journalists,” he tweeted in response to the report.