Accuracy in Media

On Saturday, The Boston Globe published an editorial that criticized Vice President Joe Biden for telling a group of supporters, which included “hundreds of African Americans,” that the Republicans would “put y’all back in chains” if they were given the chance to loosen banking regulations.

The Globe correctly pointed out that if Paul Ryan had said that, both he and Mitt Romney would have come under attack.

But imagine if Republican Paul Ryan uttered comments like that. Mitt Romney’s pick for vice president would be pilloried for racial insensitivity — and so would Romney. In the fight for civility and substance over pointless hyperbole, Biden may not be the worst offender. But he’s an offender nonetheless, and he should apologize.

The Globe also pointed out that liberals routinely dismiss Biden’s gaffes while making sure to highlight similar comments made by conservatives, resulting in a double standard.

Liberals routinely dismiss Biden’s gaffes as the rhetorical excesses of an overly exuberant speaker — it’s ‘Joe being Joe.’ And there can be something appealing about a politician who throws caution and the script that goes with it to the winds. Yet when conservative speakers get overly exuberant and cross a rhetorical line, they are presumed racist or culturally insensitive, rather than refreshingly free-spirited. One standard should apply.

Deputy campaign manager Stephanie Cutter was asked about the editorial on CNN’s State of the Union on Sunday. She defended Biden’s remarks by saying that the Republicans have used similar language every time they say the word “unshackle,” which has become the campaign’s standard answer, weak as it is.

Cutter was given a chance by host Jim Acosta to redefine Biden’s remarks and possibly put them behind the campaign when he asked her whether or not it was a poor choice of words. She blew the opportunity by at first ignoring the question, then calling it a “distraction” and Romney hypocritical.

The Globe is right and Cutter is wrong. The only hypocrites in this case are the liberals and their allies in the media who consistently allow people like Biden to play the race card while at the same time criticizing conservatives for remarks they deem insensitive or racist.

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