As NewsBuster Tim Graham reported Sunday, the media were quite late in bringing up Congressman Jack Murtha’s (D-Pennsylvania) ethics issues, as well as his connection to Abscam in the late ’70s. Instead, such matters waited to come to the front pages until after the Democrats safely regained control of Congress. Quite surprisingly, CNN’s “Reliable Sources” host Howard Kurtz (who also writes for the Washington Post) completely agreed that the media dropped the ball on this issue, and grilled his guests about this on Sunday’s program. This segment began:Read the whole thing.
Since calling for a U.S. pullout from Iraq one year ago, Democratic Congressman Jack Murtha has drawn all kinds of media coverage for his stance. But after the election, when incoming Speaker Nancy Pelosi backed the ex-Marine for next Majority Leader, stories suddenly popped up about Murtha’s relationship with lobbyists, and whether he had helped a company that hired his brother as a lobbyist. And suddenly, television was replaying a 26-year-old videotape from the Abscam scandal in which Murtha was offered a bribe by FBI informants posing as Arab sheiks.
Kurtz then asked the Chicago Tribune’s Clarence Page:
Clarence Page, there was a big LA Times expose last year about Jack Murtha doing favors for companies that contributed to his campaign and that sort of thing. It got almost no national pickup until after the midterm elections. Why?
Page amazingly responded:
I think after the midterm elections, suddenly Jack Murtha became a political candidate. An internal election in Congress, but nevertheless, a candidate. Before that, he was a spokesperson and advocate for a strategic point of view with regard to Iraq. When you become a candidate, suddenly now you’ve got political enemies. And that means people start digging up stuff on you, and suddenly things that weren’t relevant before like the old Abscam scandal suddenly become very relevant.
The media's agenda, grossly transparent in deciding what to print or not to print to push their candidates of choice is nothing new. But the blatant acknowledgement of such from media sources who have, in the past, built their reputations on so-called "unbiased reporting" is certainly something to behold.
Jack Murtha received a gift from the MSM. If the people of Pennsylvania's 12th CD really knew what a corrupt politician that Murtha is, he would be sitting on a rocking chair on his front porch in Johnstown, and a much more deserving candidate would have taken his place.