Media Tries To Spin GOP Lies On Katrina Into A Poll Bump For Bush
On the subject of GOP myths propagated by the willing media, a couple of points need to be made tonight. First, you have seen an attempt at fluffing Bush’s approval ratings by both USA Today and CNN over the last couple of days based on a Gallup poll taken through Sunday. In the Gallup poll, it is claimed that by Bush’s active engagement in the Katrina recovery effort that his approval ratings have gone up. As Media Matters for America noted yesterday, both Julianne Malveaux and Wolf Blitzer put out the spin that Bush’s numbers were on the upswing because his approval rating had gone up one percentage point in the Gallup poll to 46% from the 45% figure that was logged in the same poll at the end of August. (And yes, in the most recent poll there were fewer Democrats in the sample than the last poll, but of course CNN didn’t mention that.) USA Today continued that spin in its piece today.
And how did CNN and USAT claim that Bush was getting a bump in the polls? By comparing Gallup’s 46% figure with other recent polls by different pollsters where Bush was consistently logging figures in the high 30’s or low 40’s. Of course, you cannot draw apples and oranges comparisons between a Gallup poll and a Pew, AP/Ipsos, ABC News/Washington Post, Newsweek, Time, or CBS News poll to make a relevant comparison, yet that didn’t stop CNN or USAT from trying to prop Bush up. So instead USAT spun it today and said that the Gallup poll was more relevant than the others because it was the latest poll among the group. Well, by that standard, then Gallup still looks like an outlier because both the Pew poll and the ABC News/Post polls were taken at exactly the same time, and both showed approval ratings at their lowest levels and below Gallup’s reading. So give it up CNN and USAT. You are returning to your shilling ways for Bush.
Second, Pew reports that there are more and more people finding fault with the response of state and local officials. One good source to debunk most of the right wing claims in this area is to refer to this summary by the fine folks at ThinkProgress that debunks the right wing myths about Katrina. Gallup also is saying that the public’s outlook on Katrina has improved. One reason why Bush may get away with putting this off onto the heads of state and local officials is simply because the media is a willing participant in spreading lies.
As compiled by David Brock’s Media Matters for America, here are just a few examples over the last week where lies were told in the media.
-Fox lies about Governor Blanco’s state of emergency declaration.
-Columnist Jack Kelly had five lies in one column over the weekend.
-Rush continues to lie with reckless abandon.
-Weasel Rich Lowry smeared Governor Blanco with lies while a guest host on Fox.
-Hapless George Stephanopoulos on Sunday went along with the “school bus” lie.
-CBS News’ Peter Van Sant told several lies on “48 Hours”.
-Several media outlets including Fox keep lying about the Red Cross access to New Orleans.
And that is just this week. I love the smell of GOP desperation in the air.