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FOX Calls Democrats “Death-O-Crats” As It Promotes Author Misrepresenting Public Opinion On Abortion

Reported by Ellen - May 1, 2006

He may not have a missing blonde daughter but Ramesh Ponnuru, author of The Party of Death, is sure to be getting a lot of exposure on FOX News in the near future. The party of death refers to the Democrats’ support of abortion and “disregard for human life,” as substitute co-host Rich Lowry put it on Hannity & Colmes Friday night (4/28/06). During a teaser for the segment, the screen said, "Death-o-crats?"

In a trademark maneuver of radical conservatives, Ponnuru and Lowry tried to sell their extremist positions as centrist by painting the mainstream as radical. Ponnuru said, “Democrats are actually losing voters because of their extremism on the abortion issue.” In fact, Democrats are gaining voters, if a FOX News poll released 3/16/06 is to be believed. To quote from the article on FOXNews.com, “a majority wants to see changes on Capitol Hill. About one in three Americans (32 percent) say they want Republicans to keep control of both the House and Senate, while over half either want Democrats to win control of both houses (31 percent) or for control to be divided between Republicans and Democrats (26 percent).”

Rather than stand up for truth or journalistic integrity, Lowry disingenuously added that the Democrats’ position on abortion is “a loser for them.” He also asked how people misunderstand “the radicalism” of Roe v. Wade.

As Ponnuru answered, “Journalistic elite is a functional ally of the party of death” appeared on the screen.

Alan Colmes noted that in a recent FOX News poll, 36% of Republicans are pro choice, 32% pro life. “Wouldn’t they be the party of death as well?”

Not surprisingly, Ponnuru didn’t think so. He claimed it was a fault in the questioning. “The polling which simply asks people what label they choose is I think less informative than… (asking) what kind of abortion policy they want.” He also made the astonishing statement that the polls show “overwhelmingly” that most of the public “is willing to ban most abortions.”

Unfortunately, Colmes did not have rebuttal data handy but he rightly said that the public “overwhelmingly” wants at least some degree of legality and does not want the government telling them what kinds of personal choices they can make. He challenged Ponnuru to name the polls that show otherwise.

Ponnuru responded that Gallup has “consistently found that.”

Once again, Ponnuru misrepresented the truth. A lengthy roundup of polls by PollingReport.com, with various forms of questions, indicates that the publicly strongly supports Roe v. Wade and the right to choose.

“This is really a hit piece on Democrats,” Colmes said.

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