Elisabeth Meinecke

I get that Mitt Romney's overseas trip may or may not have been the most well-executed presidential campaign booster, but it appears the networks are determined to forego any flowery rhetoric they reserved for 2008 Obama and emphasize Romney's failures. According to the Media Research Center,

"Mitt Romney's week-long international trip resulted in unrelentingly negative coverage from the big three broadcast networks, a stark change from the glowing press awarded to then-candidate Barack Obama's world tour in 2008. While Obama was treated like a rock star (from the Associated Press: "It's not only Obama's youth, eloquence and energy that have stolen hearts across the Atlantic...."), Romney endured a focus on gaffes and the trivial. 

MRC analysts examined all 21 ABC, CBS and NBC evening news stories about Romney's trip to London, Israel and Poland between July 25 and July 31. Virtually all of these stories (18, or 86%) emphasized Romney's "diplomatic blunders," from his "golden gaffe" at the Olympic games to "missteps" that offended the Palestinians."

Honestly, the best part, though, is when MRC puts this side by side with coverage Obama received on his overseas tour before getting elected president:

In July of 2008, Barack Obama's international tour took him to Israel where, in an attempt to show toughness over Iran, the then-senator incorrectly told reporters that he was a member of the Senate Banking committee. (Obama erroneously referred to "his" committee's calls for divestment from Iran.) There was no outcry and no reporting of "errors" or "gaffes," at least on the three broadcast evening newscasts.

Obama's 2008 foreign tour, unlike Romney's 2012 version, received glowing coverage.

When the Democrat arrived in Berlin to speak, Brian Williams could hardly contain himself. On the July 24, 2008 Nightly News, he trumpeted, "...The man from Chicago, Illinois, the first ever African-American running as presumptive nominee of the Democratic Party, brought throngs of people into the center of Berlin, streaming into this city, surging to get close to him, to hear his message."

On the same program, Andrea Mitchell was beside herself, marveling at the large crowds: "It's hard to figure out what the comparison is. What do you compare this with?"

Then-CBS Evening News anchor Katie Couric couched the visit in the most favorable terms, hyping, "Barack Obama extends the hand of friendship to Europe."


Elisabeth Meinecke

Elisabeth Meinecke is TOWNHALL MAGAZINE Managing Editor. Follow her on Twitter @lismeinecke.