Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.) on Tuesday, Nov. 19, amid the Democrat-led impeachment inquiry against President Donald Trump, grilled the press for being “puppets” for the Democratic Party.
Nunes, the ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee, dismissed accusations of President Trump engaging in a “quid pro quo” with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in a July 25 phone call and urged Americans to see for themselves the truth versus the media’s portrayal of it.
“If you watched the impeachment hearings last week you may have noticed a disconnect between what you actually saw and the mainstream media accounts describing it,” Nunes said in his Nov. 19 opening statement. “You saw three diplomats who disliked President Trump’s Ukraine policy discussing secondhand and thirdhand conversations about their objections with the Trump policy.”
“But what you read in the press were accounts of shocking, damning and explosive testimony that fully supports the Democrats accusations,” Nunes continued, before blasting big media for their prejudiced coverage of the impeachment inquiry.
“With their biased misreporting on the Russia hoax, the media lost the confidence of millions of Americans, and because they refuse to acknowledge how badly they botched the story, they’ve learned no lessons and simply expect Americans will believe them as they try to stoke yet another partisan frenzy,” he said.
A recent study by MRC NewsBusters’ Bill D’Agostino has found that the vast majority of media coverage on the impeachment inquiry relied on reports from unnamed sources.
The study revealed that “nearly three fifths” of the sources used by three major broadcast networks (ABC, CBS, and NBC) in their reports about the impeachment probe were unnamed, and that the purpose of using anonymous sources was “mostly to pass along damning accusations against the President that cannot be independently verified.”
D’Agostino explained in an Oct. 29 report that using anonymous sources is an effective method for politicians to promote their beliefs without having their agenda exposed.
“Every source who talks to a reporter is promoting the facts and spin that best reflects their agenda,” D’Agostino wrote. “When President Trump or House Speaker Nancy Pelosi speaks on camera, viewers can make up their own minds about how much to trust what is said. But when a source hides behind the cloak of anonymity, that source’s agenda is also hidden from the audience.”
“Because this impeachment inquiry is unfolding behind closed doors, journalists have relied heavily on leaks – provided on the condition of anonymity – which audiences have no means of verifying. The result is a deluge of hearsay reporting that looks more like a game of telephone than serious journalism,” D’Agostino added.
White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham earlier this month lambasted the testimony of U.S. ambassador to the E.U. Gordon Sondland for his understanding of the July 25 phone call and assumptions that there was collusion involved.
Grisham also dismissed allegations of a quid pro quo since Ukraine had no knowledge regarding the distribution of military aid by the US, and took a jab at misleading media headlines, and Sondland, as he “didn’t identify any solid source” in his testimony.
“No amount of salacious media-biased headlines, which are clearly designed to influence the narrative, change the fact that the President has done nothing wrong.”
With speculation aside, both Presidents Trump and Zelensky have denied of wrongdoing and asserted that there was no problem with the phone call.
The aid to Ukraine, too, eventually flowed free of condition.