"ABC News Director To O’Reilly: Media Has Liberal Bias And ‘We’ve Got To Fix That’"
Yesterday, Mark Halperin, ABC Political Director and co-author of the new book The Way To Win, went on The O’Reilly Factor and agreed with Bill O’Reilly that members of the “old media” are too liberal and should “prove to conservatives that we understand their grievances.”
When O’Reilly pointedly asked him if he believed major news organizations — including ABC — had a liberal bias, Halperin repeated the right-wing talking point that the media is trying to suppress Republican turnout. He told O’Reilly, “If I were a conservative, I understand why I would feel suspicious that I was not going to get a fair break at the end of an election. We’ve got to make sure we do better, so conservatives don’t have to be concerned about that.” Watch it:
Halperin’s comments to O’Reilly followed his 10/23 column in The Note, where he outlined 12 ways the media is being too liberal in its coverage of the midterm elections. Media Matters debunked some of his points.
(Big Tent Democrat has more.)
Full transcript below:
O’REILLY: “Factor follow-up” segment tonight, a somewhat surprising ABC News Internet posting. It’s entitled “How the Liberal Old Media Plans to Cover the Last Two Weeks of the Election.”
The article was written by Mark Halperin, the political director of ABC News, and also the co-author of a brand new book called “The Way to Win: Taking the White House in 2008.” Mr. Halperin joins us from New York.
This is a very tough piece of analysis that you wrote. I’m surprised. I’m not stunned, because you are a gutsy guy. You have done this before. But let’s walk through it. Who is the liberal old media?
MARK HALPERIN, POLITICAL DIRECTOR, ABC NEWS: Well, Bill, as you know in this country, we’ve got these old news organizations. The major networks, ABC, where you used to work, The New York Times, The Washington Post.
These organizations have been around a long time. And for 40 years, conservatives have looked with suspicion at them. I think we’ve got a chance in these last two weeks to prove to conservatives that we understand their grievances. We’re going to try to do better, but these organizations still have incredible sway. And conservatives are certain that we’re going to be out to get them. We’ve got to fix that.
O’REILLY: All right, so you’re actually admitting, you the political director of ABC News, that CBS News, maybe your own network tilts left?
HALPERIN: We write in the way to win (INAUDIBLE) that over the years, there a lot of examples. What CBS News did in the 2004 election with the president’s National Guard record. Lots of examples.
If I were a conservative, I understand why I would feel suspicious that I was not going to get a fair break at the end of an election. We’ve got to make sure we do better, so conservatives don’t have to be concerned about that. It’s just – it’s not fair.