Now that the Ketanji Brown Jackson hearings are complete, we have collected another fascinating exhibit of the leftist tilt of “independent fact-checkers.” Just try to find a single fact check on anything Jackson said. Try to find a single evaluation of any statement by a Democratic politician touting Jackson — from President Joe Biden to Dick Durbin and on down.
Checking liberals and Democrats is apparently not listed among their job duties.
On March 28, White House deputy press secretary Andrew Bates addressed Jackson’s qualifications. Bates claimed what speaks to the strength of her public record “is the multitude of fact checks from the press, from retired judges and from former prosecutors who have dismantled attacks brought by a small group of GOP senators.”
“Dismantling” Republican critiques is the job of the Fact Check community? That’s what it looks like.
Bates applauded the nation’s largest Democrat rags for their efforts. He touted The Washington Post Fact Checker article by Glenn Kessler titled “These Trump Judges Failed Hawley’s Sentencing Test for Jackson.” He also cited New York Times fact-checker Linda Qiu’s article, titled “Critics of Jackson’s Child Sex Abuse Sentences Backed Judges with Similar Records.”
The Biden press aide correctly noted, “This was all on top of a raft of other fact checks already establishing that the basis of these criticisms was dishonest.” Democrats can float on a raft of “fact checks” attempting to censor or downgrade the reach of Republicans.
The targeting tilt was unanimous.
The Associated Press team offered three “checks” with a self-evident aggression: “Republicans twist Jackson’s judicial record,” “Republicans skew Jackson’s record on crime” and “Senators misrepresent Jackson on abortion.” Why they left “Republican” out of the third one is anyone’s guess.
Reuters offered two “fact checks” defending Jackson, claiming that it was “missing context” when she attacked loud anti-abortion protesters and that it was “misleading” to say she accused President George W. Bush and Donald Rumsfeld of being “war criminals” when she complained terror suspects were tortured at Guantanamo.
CNN’s Daniel Dale offered one fact check on the “war criminals” complaint.
FactCheck.com offered three “checks” that energetically explained why Jackson was unfairly maligned, including her views on critical race theory.
Snopes.com wondered, “Was Ketanji Brown Jackson Drama Scene Partners with Matt Damon in College?” The verdict was “Research In Progress,” which shows you Snopes wants the clickbait before the research is even completed. That’s not a fact check at all.
It’s absolutely shocking that Bates didn’t bask in the glow of PolitiFact. Since March 22, these transparently partisan servants offered eight “fact checks” attacking conservatives and Republicans in defense of Jackson.
Add to that one bizarre attack on a Trump fan on Facebook with 2,700 friends. He was ruled “False” when he claimed the Kavanaugh hearings drew more live coverage than the Jackson hearings. That is “True,” and PolitiFact is “False.” Once they started throwing around shoddy rape claims, “The Price Is Right” and “The View” had to take a hike.
This is why Jacob Siegel of Tablet magazine proclaimed, “America’s new public-private ‘Ministry of Truth’ mainly serves the interests of the tech platforms and Democratic Party operatives who underwrite and support the fact-checking enterprise. This, in turn, convinces large numbers of normal Americans that the officially sanctioned news product they receive is an ass-covering con job.”
Tim Graham is director of media analysis at the Media Research Center and executive editor of the blog NewsBusters.org. To find out more about Tim Graham and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.