Brent Bozell

On Sunday, Oct. 12, CBS wrapped up its "Evening News" with the apparently charming scoop that Sister Cecilia Gaudette, a 106-year-old Catholic nun living in Rome, would cast her first presidential ballot since 1952 ... for Barack Obama. That's one more evening-news story than CBS has devoted to Obama's radical legislative record on abortion.

Try this on for size: ABC, CBS and NBC together have unloaded more than a thousand stories on Obama's presidential campaign, and we're still waiting for the first broadcast network TV story devoted to examining Obama's abortion record.

CBS's man in Rome, Allen Pizzey, packaged his story without the slightest interest into inquiring as to why this Catholic nun would vote for a candidate who is clearly the nation's fervent advocate of abortion. Instead, Pizzey chose to ... ooze. "She has a simple, old-fashioned standard for politicians," Pizzey proclaimed, before giving the good nun the opportunity for her on-air national endorsement of Barack Obama: "A good straight man; good private life, honest and politically able to govern, of course."

Wait a minute. Isn't this a classic Catholic scandal story, a nun publicly defying church teaching? This kind of story cheering a "dissident" Catholic as "old-fashioned" is a natural for Pizzey, a reporter who kicked the casket of Pope John Paul the Great in 2005, saying his rigid opposition to abortion was a "flaw" of his life: "His legacy is not without flaws. His staunch refusal to ordain women as priests and rigorous rejection of birth control, abortion and homosexuality, have alienated many."

CBS skipped that angle. It detracts from the Obama story line.

Not only has CBS chosen -- yes, chosen -- to skip Obama's abortion controversies, this network has also refused to cover the controversies surrounding Obama's Catholic running mate, Sen. Joe Biden. He weirdly pronounced on "Meet the Press" in September that the teachings of St. Thomas Aquinas could be used to confuse Catholic doctrine against abortion. Just like his Catholic friend John Kerry, Biden couldn't "impose" his faith on anyone: "For me to impose that judgment on everyone else who is equally and maybe even more devout than I am seems to me is inappropriate in a pluralistic society."

CBS didn't find it newsworthy that more than a dozen bishops publicly corrected Biden for mangling Aquinas, or that the Supreme Knight of the Knights of Columbus wrote a terrific open letter calling him out for his remarks. As CBS and other networks touted Biden's "working-class Catholic roots" growing up in Scranton, Pa., they refused even to note that the Bishop of Scranton had announced it wrong to give Holy Communion to pro-abortion politicians like Biden.

CBS briefly covered Obama's remarks to a right-to-life question at Rick Warren's church, yet completely ignored his infamous declaration that deciding when life begins is "above my pay grade." They just ran the quote "I am pro-choice. I believe in Roe vs. Wade. And I come to that conclusion not because I'm pro-abortion, but because ultimately I don't think women make these decisions casually." For CBS, abortion has been an issue in this race only on the Republican side. CBS has described Gov. Sarah Palin's views on abortion as "fierce" several times, but would never apply that adjective to Obama or Biden.

Obama's record is beyond "fierce." Not only has Obama dared to support the right to a partial-birth abortion, but in the Illinois state Senate, Obama fought against a Born-Alive Infant Protection Act, designed to offer legal protections to a child who survived an abortion attempt. In one debate in 2002, in a great spasm of ideological ardor, he argued it was acceptable for babies to be killed after they'd exited the womb, since trying to keep this tiny survivor alive "would just burden the original decision of the mother to abort the child."

Obama wouldn't want that gnawing tension across the dinner table: "Mom, why did you want me dead?"

This is the same Sen. Obama that declared in April that he wouldn't want his daughters to be "punished with a baby" for having premarital sex without contraceptives. CBS ignored that, too, as well as ABC. (NBC skipped it except for Tim Russert airing a clip on "Meet the Press.") There is apparently nothing harsh Obama can say about babies that will be considered newsworthy by Barack's disciplined message providers in the media.

Remember all this omission when you see vapid pseudo-journalists like Jon Stewart oozing to Michelle Obama that her family has been "vetted about as much as a family can be vetted." Remember all this when the networks claim the campaign should be about "the issues." Obama's been on the presidential campaign trail for 20 months, and the TV networks are still giving him a pass. At this point, it isn't accidental, nor is it coincidental. It is deliberate.


Brent Bozell

Founder and President of the Media Research Center, Brent Bozell runs the largest media watchdog organization in America.
 
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