Accuracy in Media

Monday on MSNBC’s Daily Rundown with Chuck Todd, he ran a quote from the L.A. Times that was shown in full screen, in two parts. The odd thing about the quote is that it was from an unnamed source, who supposedly commented to the Times reporter, but didn’t give her name. Great source.

The quote from the Times, which MSNBC shortened to make it even worse, was, “A New York City donor a few cars back, who also would not give her name, said Romney needed to do a better job connecting. ‘I don’t think the common person is getting it,’ she said from the passenger seat of a Range Rover stamped with East Hampton beach permits. ‘Nobody understands why Obama is hurting them.

“We’ve got the message,’ she added. ‘But my college kid, the baby sitters, the nails ladies — everybody who’s got the right to vote — they don’t understand what’s going on. I just think if you’re lower income — one, you’re not as educated, two, they don’t understand how it works, they don’t understand how the systems work, they don’t understand the impact.’”

In other words, “Romney donor says ‘Let them eat cake.’”

Even if the quote was accurate, it is totally anonymous and unverifiable. Yet for MSNBC, it was worthy of a major graphic, and was introduced by Chuck Todd saying, “It don’t exactly help Romney dispel the Obama campaign narrative.” At MSNBC, they call this journalism.

Immediately following that quote in the Times was one by someone who actually identified herself, but Todd didn’t find it newsworthy. “Sharon Zambrelli voted for Obama in 2008 but has been disappointed with his handling of the economy and leadership style. ‘I was very disenchanted with the political process and he gave me hope,’ she said, but ultimately: ‘He’s just a politician,’ she said, an ‘emperor with no clothes.’”

Just another day at the MSNBC office.

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