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Sunday, March 21, 2010
Newsmax's Patten Becomes Anti-Reform Soldier
Topic: Newsmax

March 19 was a busy day for Newsmax managing editor David Patten -- he penned no fewer than four articles promoting opposition to health care reform.

First, he wrote that the outcome over reform "remains very much in doubt," with a focus on who which members of Congress were or were not voting for it. Then, Patten promoted the tea party movement's anti-reform rally, calling it "one last push to stop the Obamacare freight train."

This was followed by an article in which Patten allowed Stupak to uncritically claim that the Senate bill contains "pro-abortion language" and violates "the longstanding agreement that taxpayer dollars should not defray the cost of abortions." While Patten portrayed Stupak as responding the an Associated Press fact-check pointing out that the  Senate bill does not fund abortion, Pattenmade no apparent attempt to contact anyone to rebut Stupak's claims (which have been repeatedly debunked).

Finally, Patten uncritically repeats Dick Morris' attacks on reform, failing to disclose that Morris is among the Newsmax writer triumverate working for the anti-Obama League of American Voters stop the bill.Which means Morris' unsupported claims get uncritically repeated as well.

In complaining about "backroom deals" to get the bill passed -- a procedure that, for better or worse, happens with pretty much every piece of major legislation in which the vote is close -- Morris asserts that "There were two congressmen from California who got a multi-, multi-million dollar water project for their district." What Morris appears to be referring to is a report that California's Central Valley, which happens to be reprsented by two Democratic congressmen who were allegedly wavering on health care reform. In fact, allegations of a quid pro quo are baseless -- the water allocation was increased because more winter precipitation broke a drought and filled area reservoirs.

The only thing Patten seems to be managing here is right-wing spin.


Posted by Terry K. at 10:47 AM EDT
Updated: Sunday, March 21, 2010 9:12 PM EDT

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