During the twelve days since Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein publicly announced the existence of an unspecified allegation against Brett Kavanaugh, the ABC, CBS and NBC morning and evening news shows have spent nearly six hours (344 minutes) regurgitating various unproved allegations against the Supreme Court nominee.
But only a tiny percentage of that coverage — a measly eight percent — has been devoted to Kavanaugh’s denials and the lack of corroboration for his accusers’ accounts.
MRC analysts pored over all of the coverage from September 13 through September 24. Most of the airtime (305 minutes) was spent on the allegations made by Christine Blasey Ford, which were the only known charges for most of this period. The charges leveled by Deborah Ramirez drew 37 minutes during the September 24 morning and evening news shows; an additional two minutes of airtime was spent on an unknown third accuser teased by Democratic lawyer Michael Avenatti.
Amid that sea of coverage, our analysts found the networks devoted a minuscule fraction on the key points that support the Supreme Court nominee’s case:
■ Kavanaugh’s denials. Back on September 14, Kavanaugh issued a statement “categorically and unequivocally” denying Ford’s charges. For most of the coverage that followed, his flat denial was relegated to a few seconds in lengthy stories about the charges — sometimes no more than a parenthetical clause that reporters mechanically inserted in stories that bombarded viewers with the salacious details of each accusation.
On September 24, however, the three evening newscasts ran a combined three minutes showing clips of Kavanaugh’s interview on Fox News, in which he stated his denials on camera for the first time. That night’s coverage boosted the total airtime spent telling viewers about Kavanaugh’s denial to 14 minutes, barely four percent of the overall coverage.
SOURCE: Rich Noyes