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What Bias? Here's How Much Coverage the Pelosi Attack Got vs the Kavanaugh Assassination Attempt

Townhall Media

In the week since Paul Pelosi, the husband of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, was attacked by an assailant who broke into the Pelosi home in San Francisco, the mainstream media has selectively seized on portraying the alleged perpetrator as a Trump-supporting Republican who was inspired by GOP campaign ads rather than the unhinged Berkeley looney toon the suspect's writings actually portray. 

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Despite the fact that most well-known Republicans have rightfully condemned the attack, the mainstream media has chosen to make the bizarre situation a midterm campaign issue. Their apparent hope is that the attack will back up President Joe Biden and other Democrats' claims that this election is about "Our Democracy" against Republicans who are all waiting to attack the spouses of Democrat leaders, or something. 

And while the White House claims that Biden has "always" condemned political violence (spoiler alert: he hasn't) the media is treating the Pelosi situation far differently than they did the attempted assassination of Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh following the unprecedented leak of a draft opinion in the Dobbs case showing Kavanaugh voting in the majority to overturn Roe v. Wade.

Our friends on the Media Research Center's NewsBusters crew watched all the mainstream blather so you all didn't have to and crunched the numbers. Looking at the first five days of coverage of the Pelosi attack, they found that the major broadcast networks (ABC, CBS, and NBC's morning, evening, and Sunday shows) had 11 times more coverage than in the same five-day coverage period following the attempted assassination of Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh.

Here's how much coverage NewsBusters tracked for the attempted assassination of Justice Kavanaugh:

MRC analysts found the Kavanaugh story fetched a total of 15 minutes and 1 second of airtime in the first five days since the story broke, which was June 8. The story completely fell out of the news cycle in less than 24 hours with all three evening newscasts (ABC’s World News Tonight, CBS Evening News, and NBC Nightly News) dropping the story on June 9, after covering it that morning.

The Kavanaugh attack garnered 5 minutes and 44 seconds on the first evening. ABC gave it 2 minutes 30 seconds, CBS had 2 minutes 8 seconds, and NBC came in last with 1 minute 6 seconds.

The story popped back up thanks to authorities releasing the 911 call on Saturday, June 11 with NBC’s Today giving it a 23-second recap and ABC’s World News Tonight giving it 41 seconds.

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Notably, the Sunday shows on those major networks did not mention that a would-be assassin was apprehended on the street near Kavanaugh's home with the intent to break-in and kill the Supreme Court justice.

But when it came to the days following last week's break-in and attack of Paul Pelosi, here's what NewsBusters found:

In stunning contrast, analysts found that the broadcast networks gave a whopping 166 minutes and 16 seconds to the Pelosi attack in the first five days. That’s almost three hours of coverage (2:46:16).

On the first evening, ABC alone eclipsed the total first-night Kavanaugh coverage with 6 minutes and 40 seconds. NBC gave it 6 minutes and 9 seconds, while CBS gave it 5 minutes and 22 seconds. This brought their first night total to 18 minutes and 11 seconds. The first night of Pelosi coverage surpasses the five-day total for Kavanaugh.

While ABC’s This Week, CBS’s Face the Nation, and NBC’s Meet the Press ignored the Kavanaugh attack on Sunday, June 12, the attack on Pelosi was their number one story NBC devoted almost 31 minutes (30:54). CBS gave it 12 minutes 32 seconds, and ABC came in last with 7 minutes 2 seconds.

As NewsBusters' analysis notes, those mainstream media outlets have used their obsessive coverage of the Pelosi attack to fear-monger about Republicans before the midterms — a narrative that President Biden tried to advance in his unscheduled remarks at a DNC event on Wednesday evening. 

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