It was a week ago today that media fire ignited over Sen. Harry Reid’s use of an outdated racial term to describe President Barack Obama. It was a fire that burned hot but burned out in a few days after Reid apologized and obtained absolution from Obama and a number of prominent African Americans.
On Tuesday, when top Senate Republican Mitch McConnell declined to jump in and criticize Reid, the story seemed to be down to embers, and it was gone from the airwaves almost entirely a short while later when attention focused heavily on the Haiti earthquake.
The conservative Media Research Center says a reason why the Reid controversy flamed out: The “liberal media” helped control the scandal.
The center, which analyzes the national media in an effort “to bring balance to the news,” counted 37 items on national television from Saturday to Tuesday that discussed Reid’s description of Obama as "light-skinned," and his use of the word “Negro," including interviews and panel discussions.
“Broadcast opinions were heavily skewed in Reid’s favor: 71% of interview guests, soundbites or quoted sources were supportive of the Democrat, vs. 29% who were critical of Reid,” the center said.
“It’s an excellent case study in how the liberal media aid in Democratic scandal control,” the center said. “Over four days, the networks morphed the story from one of an embarrassing racial gaffe by the Senate’s top Democrat into one about Republican over-reach in going after Reid, with some journalists even crediting the Senator with keen insight on race relations.”