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‘The Single Biggest Misconception Is That We Are Lying’: CNN Contributor
Host of Reliable Sources and Senior Media Correspondent at CNN, Brian Stelter speaks onstage at Day 1 of the Vanity Fair New Establishment Summit 2018 at The Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts on October 9, 2018 in Beverly Hills, California.
Photo by Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images

The two biggest misconceptions about the legacy media are “that we are lying” and that they manifest “political bias,” according to CNN’s “Reliable Sources.” The media’s bias actually benefits the people journalists are biased against, the show insisted.

“The single biggest misconception is that we are lying,” guest Mara Schiavocampo told host Brian Stelter on Sunday’s episode, which tackled alleged common myths about the state of American journalism.

“There is a lot of media mistrust,” she said accurately. Schiavocampo said she frequently encounters media misconceptions “when I’m at a cocktail party.”

“I hear this all the time. And here’s what I would love to correct about that misperception: We are human. We make mistakes.” But she added that “most often,” when people point out examples of the media’s lies, “what they’re pointing to is an example of a mistake, not an intentional lie.”

Neither she nor Stelter addressed “60 Minutes” reporter Sharyn Alfonsi accusing Florida Governor Ron DeSantis (R) of corruption, then editing out the substantive part of his response, which refuted her allegation.

Mistakes are “almost always innocent,” Stelter said. Schiavocampo asserted, “We do not have malicious intent.”

Neither mentioned CNN contributor Reza Aslan, who suggested he’d like to punch 16-year-old Nick Sandmann in the face during his viral stand-off with left-wing activist Nathan Phillips. “Honest question. Have you ever seen a more punchable face than this kid’s?” Aslan tweeted of the teenager. Earlier, in 2017, Aslan had called President Donald Trump a  “piece of s***.”

CNN continued enumerating the common lies and errors about the media, with Shiavocampo saying “another big” misconception about the legacy media is that reporters suffuse their coverage with their own “political bias.” She said it seems “really ironic,” but “journalists are aware of our own political bias,” and so “we’ll overcompensate to make sure the other side really gets a fair amount of coverage and really gets explained properly.”

“So in my view, when we do have a political bias, it’s the other view that actually benefits from that because we’re trying to counter our own human impulses,” she claimed.

“That’s very interesting,” replied Stelter, who said that mistakes often creep in because of the network’s “crazy workflow.”

In reality, CNN has systematically purged every contributor who expressed the view of the 78 million Americans who voted for the Republican ticket last November. After the firing of former U.S. Senator Rick Santorum in May, nearly half of CNN’s remaining “Republican” commentators endorsed Joe Biden in advance of the 2020 election: Amanda Carpenter, S.E. Cupp, former Congressman Charlie Dent, Ana Navarro, former Ohio Governor John Kasich, and “Anonymous” author Miles Taylor. The network’s latest hire, Alyssa Farah, has also been highly critical of former President Donald Trump. Instead, CNN host Don Lemon said everyone who voted for the Trump-Pence ticket voted to associate themselves with neo-Nazis and the Ku Klux Klan. He featured no opposing viewpoint.

Stelter and Schiavocampo went on to address why CNN often does not cover stories that have already circulated on social media. “Verification takes time,” she replied.

That does not explain CNN’s error-laden coverage of numerous recent stories. For instance, in September, Stelter criticized a “faulty media narrative” that erroneously claimed Border Patrol agents whipped illegal immigrants from Haiti attempting to cross into Del Rio, Texas. He did not mention that CNN had repeated the same narrative at least seven times in the past week.

Nor did CNN await “verification” before presenting Nick Sandmann and other students of Kentucky’s Covington Catholic High School as aggressively mocking American Indians based on their ethnicity.

“CNN’s tagline is ‘facts first.’ And what we believe their reporting was in this circumstance was lies first, cover up second, and facts not yet determined by that organization,” Sandmann’s attorney told Fox News. “That’s millions and millions and millions of repetitions of the lies and falsehoods that CNN spread.” CNN ultimately settled Sandmann’s $275 million lawsuit against the network on January 7 for an undisclosed sum.

When Stelter lamented the fact that Governor DeSantis has said conservatives should “assume” the legacy media are lying, Sandmann pointed to his own story as an example.

The ratings of Stelter’s show, which frequently critiques Fox News while ignoring his own network’s foibles, have plummeted throughout 2021.

The views expressed in this piece are the author’s own and do not necessarily represent those of The Daily Wire.

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