Accuracy in Media

If you wanted any more proof of Big Media backing for John Kerry’s presidential campaign, consider the report in Broadcasting & Cable magazine that Kerry “is getting a big fundraising boost from television- and movie-studio brass.”  Reporter David Hatch reports that the Kerry backers include Peter Chernin, News Corporation president; Viacom CEO Sumner Redstone; Sony Chairman Howard Stringer; and Motion Picture Association President and CEO Jack Valenti.  Each of these men is pledging to raise at least $50,000 for Kerry. 

Some may be surprised that officials of News Corporation are backing Kerry.  This is the company behind the Fox News Channel.  But officials of this corporation have been playing both sides of the street for years.  Fox News Corp Chairman Rupert Murdoch served as vice finance chairman for a Gore fund-raiser in 2000, and contributed $50,000 to the Gore campaign.  He also signed off on a deal allowing the Democrats to use the Staples Center for the 2000 Democratic Convention in Los Angeles at no charge.  That was worth $10 million.

Honest liberals have always recognized that John Kerry has been a media darling.  Indeed, writing on the website, Justin Felux blamed the media for destroying the Howard Dean campaign and elevating Kerry to the status of frontrunner.  He cited an analysis that 37% of the coverage of John Kerry’s campaign after his victory in the Iowa caucuses had been positive whereas only 10% of the coverage had been negative.  Kerry was described in news reports as “handsome,” “articulate,” “a war hero,” “statesmanlike,” and “strikingly Lincolnesque.”

But this isn’t just because Kerry is a liberal.  As Felux noted, “?while the media has indeed been very nice to John Kerry, over the course of his career John Kerry has been very nice to the media.”  He points out that Kerry was a strong supporter of legislation that permitted the consolidation of media companies.  He points out that Kerry’s “special relationship” with the telecom industry is the focus of a devastating report by The Center for Public Integrity entitled “Kerry Carries Water for Top Donor.”

The report says that the Boston-based firm known as Mintz, Levin “has been the biggest financial backer of the Massachusetts Democrat’s two-decades-long political career in elected office, with its employees contributing nearly $187,000 to various Kerry races, including his current presidential campaign.”  Kerry’s brother, Cameron, worked for the firm since 1983. 

This company lobbies on behalf of telecom organizations.  And according to the report, “Kerry and his wife Teresa Heinz Kerry have substantial holdings in telecommunications companies; between $17.6 million and $47.1 million of their combined fortune is held in companies with a stake in the industry?”  Kerry seems to have a very close relationship with some powerful Big Media Corporations.  They like him.  He likes them.

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