Two comfortable institutions of the liberal media establishment, the Pew Research Center and the Project for Excellence in Journalism, have discovered once again that five times as many national reporters (34 percent vs. 7 percent) identify themselves as liberal than conservative. As for that broad middle of 54 percent that declares itself to be "moderate," just consider them liberals with an honesty problem.
For liberal tilt, look no further than this number: 55 percent of national reporters think they haven't been "critical enough" of President Bush. After the media's aggressive air war on the White House this year, the only way they could be tougher would be to physically beat the president with clubs and baseball bats. But that's precisely the attitude of the liberal media elite. Bush isn't a completely roasted turkey yet. Turn up the oven another notch.
Or perhaps the media bigwigs think they're wimps because they don't sound like Nancy Pelosi -- yet. The House Minority Leader, the woman aspiring to be the first female Speaker of the House, is so sputtering with Bush hatred that she needs a lobster bib. This is what she said last week: "Not to get personal about it, but the president's capacity to lead has never been there. In order to lead, you have to have judgment. In order to have judgment, you have to have knowledge and experience. He has none,'' she declared. "He's gone,'' Pelosi said of Bush. "He's so gone.'' No, nothing personal there.
But it grew only harsher. Pelosi also said Bush has American blood on his hands: "He has on his shoulders the deaths of many more troops, because he would not heed the advice of his own State Department of what to expect after May 1, when he ... declared that major combat is over,'' Pelosi charged. "The shallowness that he has brought to the office has not changed since he got there.''
So where are the media, that institution so supposedly intolerant of uncivil speech and red-meat partisanship? After all, in 1995, when then-House Majority Leader Dick Armey inadvertently used the words "Barney Fag" to describe gay Congressman Barney Frank, it led the nightly newscast on CBS and had ABC opening the show wondering about Armey's "deep prejudice."