Accuracy in Media

WASHINGTON, June 5, 2007 – As Fox News comes under fire for depicting Rep. John Conyers as the indicted Rep. William Jefferson, Accuracy in Media editor Cliff Kincaid is drawing attention to another major embarrassment for the channel — Bill O’Reilly’s smear of noted conservative Dave Kopel as a “secular-progressive.” O’Reilly’s false charge was made on his Monday night program, in which he got so flustered that he told Kopel to “shut up.” O’Reilly appeared to lose complete control on the air as Kopel calmly discussed a controversy over advice on sex and drugs dispensed at a Boulder, Colorado, high school, rebutting various falsehoods told by O’Reilly in the process. (watch the video)

Kopel is research director for the Colorado-based Independence Institute, a think tank that promotes free markets and individual freedom.

Kincaid is strongly urging O’Reilly to apologize for his conduct.

The flap over Kopel occurred on the same day that the Fox News Channel ran tape of Rep. Conyers while reporting on the indictment of Rep. Jefferson on bribery charges. Fox blamed the mistake on a young production assistant and has apologized.

But no apology has yet been issued by Bill O’Reilly, who hosts the channel’s most popular program, for falsely labeling Kopel a “secular-progressive.” Kopel, who attends a Catholic Church and maintains a pro-Virgin Mary website, tried to correct O’Reilly on the air but the host didn’t want to hear any of it. Indeed, O’Reilly said that if Kopel were not a “secular-progressive,” than he, O’Reilly, was Donald Duck.

In a column on the controversy at the AIM website, www.aim.org, Kincaid says that an apology from O’Reilly would be preferable to O’Reilly wearing a Donald Duck costume on the air.

Accuracy in Media (AIM), founded by Reed Irvine in 1969, is America’s original media watchdog organization. For more information, please visit http://www.aim.org.

To arrange an interview with AIM editor Cliff Kincaid, contact Sarah Schaerr Norton at (202) 364-4401 ext. 107 or (JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

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