It seems even journalists who reflexively scoff at conservative
complaints about liberal bias will blame the media when their
favorite candidate goes down to defeat. CBS's Katie Couric led
the pack of those grumbling that Hillary Clinton's campaign was
undermined by a "sexist" news media.
"However you feel about her politics, I feel that Senator Clinton
received some of the most unfair, hostile coverage I've ever seen,"
Couric told a Washington, D.C. luncheon on June 11. The same day, on her
"Katie Couric's Notebook" video blog on CBSNews.com, Couric
alleged the Democratic primaries revealed "the continued and accepted
role of sexism in American life, particularly in the media."
"Many women have made the point that if Senator Obama had to confront
the racist equivalent of an ‘Iron My Shirt' poster at campaign rallies,
or a Hillary nutcracker sold at airports, or mainstream pundits saying
they instinctively cross their legs at the mention of her name, the
outrage would not be a footnote. It would be front-page news."
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Couric, however, was not a big media-basher when Katherine Harris in
2000 and Linda Tripp in 1998 bore the brunt of far nastier journalistic
attacks that could easily have been categorized as "sexist."
Earlier in the week, CBS's The Early Show brought on
ex-Congresswoman Patricia Schroeder to scold journalists: "The sexism
that we saw in some of the media really troubled me....It was like they
made a witch out of her, some people. You know, we thought the Salem
witch trials were over."
On Friday, the New York Times treated the complaints as a
worthy topic, with a front-page article headlined: "Media Charged With
Sexism in Clinton Coverage." Reporters Katharine Seelye and Julie Bosman
even found their own paper among the culpable: "The New York Times
wrote about Mrs. Clinton's ‘cackle' and the Washington Post
wrote about her cleavage."
show journalists have strongly liberal views on women's rights
and affirmative action. So do Couric and company really think a sexist
press sank Hillary's campaign? Or do they just wish their candidate had
received the lavishly positive press that buoyed Barack Obama's road to
For more, see the June
12 CyberAlerts, and MRC’s TimesWatch,