One of the favorite complaints of Republicans centers on liberal media bias. They claim that the media is biased for Democrats, but today Face the Nation host Bob Schieffier became the latest alleged liberal media member to parrot the right wing’s racist attacks against Sonia Sotomayor.
Here is the video of Schieffer:
Schieffer said, “Let’s get past the bombast. When you come right down to it, there is a point here. If I said to you my experiences as a white man would lead me to make better decisions than your experiences as a white woman, I’d be in a heap of trouble if I said that, wouldn’t I?”
It looks like we can add Bob Schieffer to the growing list of people in the media who never bothered to actually read Sotomayor’s full remarks. Once again, here is what Sotomayor said, “Justice O’Connor has often been cited as saying that a wise old man and wise old woman will reach the same conclusion in deciding cases. I am not so sure Justice O’Connor is the author of that line since Professor Resnik attributes that line to Supreme Court Justice Coyle. I am also not so sure that I agree with the statement. First, as Professor Martha Minnow has noted, there can never be a universal definition of wise. Second, I would hope that a wise Latina woman with the richness of her experiences would more often than not reach a better conclusion than a white male who hasn’t lived that life.”
Here is the paragraph that Schieffer didn’t bother to read, “Let us not forget that wise men like Oliver Wendell Holmes and Justice Cardozo voted on cases which upheld both sex and race discrimination in our society. Until 1972, no Supreme Court case ever upheld the claim of a woman in a gender discrimination case. I, like Professor Carter, believe that we should not be so myopic as to believe that others of different experiences or backgrounds are incapable of understanding the values and needs of people from a different group. Many are so capable. As Judge Cedarbaum pointed out to me, nine white men on the Supreme Court in the past have done so on many occasions and on many issues including Brown.”
Bob Schieffer is yet another example of someone who Republicans have labeled as part of the liberal media bias, but Schieffer ran with a Republican talking point, and couldn’t even be bothered to do the most basic research on the subject. Bob’s question is invalid, because he based on a point that was never made by Sotomayor.
Sadly, it took Republican Senator John Kyl to add context to Schieffer’s question:
Bob Schieffer considers himself a serious journalist, but yet he chose to ask a one sided question that was designed to make headlines. It is one thing for somebody like Glenn Beck to do zero research, but Bob Schieffer knows bettef. On MSNBC, Chris Matthews used the parsed quote during one of the segments of his show last week.
So called liberal media members The New York Times and CNN also ran with stories that didn’t bother to put the quote into its proper context. This makes me wonder if the media has gotten so lazy and thirsty for controversy that they are willing run with unfounded claims by either political party, if it will generate headlines.
Mr. Easley is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association