The media and the Democrats have been using one Big Lie after another to attack Bush. Another example: the Times' White House reporter wrote that Bush claimed the threat from Iraq was imminent. But Bush actually said was the threat wasn't imminent, and then he proceeded to argue that we should act anyway. It's interesting that no one at the Times caught this obvious error.
It is common knowledge that about 90 percent of journalists vote Democratic, and it is common sense that this must affect their news coverage. A recent survey of journalists found that only 7 percent call themselves conservative versus 34 percent liberal and 59 percent moderates, and that the large majority of moderates took liberal stands on issues. Ordinarily most journalists try to be fair and accurate. But it's hard to resist the conclusion that at least some have crossed the line and are, consciously or unconsciously, actively trying to defeat the president.
The good news is that the public is on to this. The recent Pew Research Center poll showed that the credibility of most major media has declined since 2000. (Among the exceptions are U.S. News & World Report and Fox News Channel, two organizations that I work for and that, unlike most other media outlets, have staffs with significant numbers of Republicans as well as Democrats.) And the voting public does not seem to be buying the line, repeated with almost religious intensity, that it has been absolutely and positively proven there was no connection between Al Qaeda and Saddam Hussein's Iraq on 9-11. In a June 22-23 Fox News poll, voters said they believed there was a partnership between Iraq and al Qaeda by a 56 percent to 28 percent margin, and by a 68 percent to 23 percent margin they say it was very or somewhat likely that Saddam had prior knowledge of 9-11.
Believed, likely -- people understand that these are matters of uncertainty, that decisions have to be made without perfect knowledge and that the 9-11 Commission's failure to find evidence of an Iraq-Al Qaeda tie on 9-11 is not final proof that there was not one.