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Special Report Decidedly Unfair and Unbalanced in its Coverage of Yesterday's Vote on Iraq War Bills

Reported by Melanie - May 17, 2007 -

Two bills designed to curtail George Bush's open-ended Iraq war policy went down to defeat yesterday (May 16, 2007) in the Senate. One was a bill introduced by Democrat Russ Feingold and one was a bill introduced by Republican John Warner. Last night on Special Report, Fox did a segment on Feingold's bill, using it to smear Democrats, but no mention was made of the Republican bill until the final seconds of the segment. Fox devoted 11 words to it.

Brit Hume introduced Fox's Jim Angle with:

Democratic leaders in the Senate today took another vote that seemed mainly designed to measure support for ending the war in Iraq. It failed, as expected, by a wide margin. In discussing the outcome later, the Democrats claimed though, that they are making progress and the vote did put a couple of presidential candidates on the record.

Angle came on and explained that the bill aimed to, "pull funding for the Iraq war by the end of next March." Fox showed clips of Feingold and Ted Kennedy speaking in support of the bill and Angle continued:

Though none of the 2008 Democratic frontrunners spoke on the issue, all the candidates voted in favor of the bill, a significant change for Clinton and Obama who announced they'd support the bill after Senator Chris Dodd started running an ad trying to shame them into supporting the bill.

-Clip of Dodd ad.-

But some Democrats...are nervous about any talk of pulling funding.

-Video of Carl Levin speaking against the bill.-

Republicans couldn't help but note that the effort to establish what they call a 'date for defeat' didn't come close to passing.

-Video of Trent Lott calling the bill a "surrender now" bill.-

But several Democrats argued that wasn't the point.

-Video of Joe Biden saying that Democrats are "keeping pressure" on Bush so the public sees, "that we're trying to change the president's course in Iraq," and video of Feingold saying that, "Today, a majority of Democratic senators said it is time...to bring this mistake to an end."-

Angle then turned to video of Mitch McConnell, saying McConnell argued that, "This was just another distraction from the central issue," and then to audio of McConnell saying, "The House and Senate have voted 30 times on Iraq amendments this year. The president's request for funding the troops came up 100 days ago. 30 votes, 100 days [holding his thumb and index finger together in the shape of a zero], no money for Iraq."

Three minutes on, Angle wrapped up. Pay attention or you'll miss the part about the Republican bill:

But, today's action on Feingold and a Republican bill from Senator Warner to establish benchmarks which also failed, clears the way for the Senate to pass a simple measure calling for funding the war... Everyone is committed to getting the funding passed and signed by Memorial Day.

Comment: Warner's bill could also be described as one that "pulls funding for the Iraq war," sets a "date for defeat," and calls for "surrender now," but never mind that. On Fox, Republicans are treated differently than Democrats. It's commonly known as, "fair and balanced."