NY Times’ Idea Of Covering Stimulus Debate: Let One Side Be Heard
By Don Feder
Wednesday February 11, 2009

Try to imagine the following scenario: It’s the first month of George W. Bush’s first administration. The president is pushing a controversial proposal, opposed by most Americans and not supported by a single Democrat in the House of Representatives.

The New York Times does a front-page story that only quotes the president and his supporters. No other voices are heard.

Impossible, you say. You’re absolutely right.

But with a Democrat in the White House, it isn’t hard to imagine at all. Yesterday, The Times did yet another piece touting the president’s so-called stimulus plan, thinly disguised as a news story.

We were told that Obama took his case to the American people with a press conference on Monday, as his boondoggle cleared the heavily Democratic Senate.

The story noted that the president then “took his message on the road,” traveling to Elkhart, Ind., a city with high unemployment.

There Mr. Obama said Republican criticism of the Porky-Pigulus bill came from “the folks who presided over a doubling of the national debt.” Did any Democrats vote for deficit budgets during those years? Did the president? The Times didn’t care to inquire.

Of course, what was missing from the piece were dissenting voices.

Apparently, The New York Times couldn’t find one Republican congressman to quote, an economist who thinks the stimulus plan is voodoo economics, or an opinion poll to complement the article.

A Rasmussen poll, released the same day, showed 62% of voters want more tax cuts and less spending in any stimulus bill. Only 20% like the bill in its present form, while 14% want more spending and fewer tax cuts (presumably, all government workers and their dependents).

Instead of reading The New York Times, you could go to the website of the Democratic National Committee. Either way, you’ll get the same balanced coverage.

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