News

ABC Director's Memo Stirs Concern of Media Bias
Posted by Staff on Oct 10, 2004 - 2:06:00 AM

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ST LOUIS - As the presidential race becomes tighter, the media's obligation to report fairly and in an unbiased manner becomes necessary for a fair race.

Canyon News' Declaration of Principles (see link above) is our policy of promise to report the news as it happens without spin or untruths or any sort of bias. In order to stay within our policy, we'll let you be the judge.

The following is an internal memo written by ABC News Political Director, Mark Halperin, dated October 8, 2004:

It goes without saying that the stakes are getting very high for the country and the campaigns - and our responsibilities become quite grave

I do not want to set off and [sic] endless colloquy that
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none of us have time for today - nor do I want to stifle one. Please respond if you feel you can advance the discussion.

The New York Times (Nagourney/Stevenson) and Howard Fineman on the web both make the same point today: the current Bush attacks on Kerry involve distortions and taking things out of context in a way that goes beyond what Kerry has done.

Kerry distorts, takes out of context, and mistakes all the time, but these are not central to his efforts to win.

We have a responsibility to hold both sides accountable to the public interest, but that doesn't mean we reflexively and artificially hold both sides "equally" accountable when the facts don't warrant that.

I'm sure many of you have this week felt the stepped up Bush efforts to complain about our coverage. This is all part of their efforts to get away with as much as possible with the stepped up, renewed efforts to win the election by destroying Senator Kerry at least partly through distortions.

It's up to Kerry to defend himself, of course. But as one of the few news organizations with the skill and strength to help voters evaluate what the candidates are saying to serve the public interest. Now is the time for all of us to step up and do that right.