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FOX News Adds Its Vote For Gonzales And Against Democratic Concerns Over Torture Memos

Reported by Ellen - February 4, 2005

You could practically see the glee on the faces of FOX News reporters Brian Wilson and Julie Asher as they gloated over the confirmation of Alberto Gonzales as US Attorney General and bashed the Democrats for their concerns over his role in condoning mistreatment of prisoners.

In an article published on FOXNews.com, the reporters took their first swipe at the Democrats in the third paragraph by making them look like Don Quixotes tilting at foolish windmills: "Though Gonzales' approval seemed certain days ago, Democrats continued to voice strong opposition to him on Thursday."

Next our "Fair and Balanced" reporters defended their man Gonzales and bashed the Dems a bit more when they wrote, "Gonzales has said on several occasions that the memos he wrote, including one written in January 2002 that was often cited by Democrats, did not endorse torture tactics but merely described that terrorists are not signatories to the Geneva Conventions, which prohibit certain interrogation techniques."

In other words, Gonzales "merely" thinks it's OK to use "certain interrogation techniques" that FOX conveniently doesn't name. But they are likely to include water-boarding - a simulation of drowning - and the threat of live burial among others. As Steve Chapman wrote in the Chicago Tribune, "(Gonzales) told the committee, 'There is no legal prohibition under the Convention Against Torture on cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment with respect to aliens overseas.' Cruelty at home? No way. Cruelty abroad? Let's get it on!"

But, of course, Fair and Balanced FOX didn't see fit to report that point. Instead, FOX said that "Sen. Richard Durbin, D-Ill tried to make a link between the memos and abuses at prisons run by U.S. troops abroad." After a brief mention that Democrats "clearly did not have the backing to mount a filibuster" and an enumeration of the Democratic senators supporting Gonzales or the ones not voting because they were traveling with the president, FOX moved on to accusing the Democrats of prejudice.

"Democratic opposition this week stirred Republicans to ask aloud why Democrats were so opposed to Gonzales' nomination. 'Is it prejudice? Is it a belief that a Hispanic-American should never be in a position like this because he will be the first one ever in a position like this?' Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah said."

Then, as if to prove that Republicans are the party of civil rights, FOX reported that "Republicans agree that confirming Gonzales as the new attorney general will resonate throughout the Hispanic community. 'This is a breakthrough of incredible magnitude for Hispanic-Americans and should not be diluted by partisan politics,' Florida GOP Sen. Mel Martinez, the nation's first Cuban-American senator, said... Martinez delivered his remarks on the Senate floor in Spanish, saying the confirmation would mean a lot to young Hispanics, who have never seen one of their own in the top four Cabinet positions."

And the Dems? They "were sent scrambling after Martinez's break with Senate tradition. They quickly issued a statement written in Spanish opposing the Gonzales nomination."

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