Topic: Media Research Center
As we know, the Media Research Center just hates accurate reporting when it makes its look bad. And the MRC's Bill D'Agostino was mad that CNN pointed out that, according to William Barr's summary of the Mueller report, President Trump has not been completely exonerated on the issue of obstruction of justice:
Attorney General William Barr's inclusion of the phrase “does not exonerate” in his summary on Sunday afternon of the Mueller report has become a much-needed security blanket for liberal journalists. For the past 24 hours, CNN analysts, commentators, correspondents, and hosts have clung to the phrase, repeating it ad nauseam in a vain attempt to reassure themselves that maybe — just maybe — President Trump might still be found guilty of obstruction of justice.
MRC analysts looked at the past 24 hours of CNN coverage (from 5:00 p.m. Eastern on March 24 to the same time the following day), and found a total of 120 instances in which hosts or other journalists asserted that President Trump had not been exonerated. Those 120 cases did not include quotes from Democratic politicians or other explicitly partisan sources.
About one third of those 120 instances were journalists reading aloud the same phrase found in Barr’s summary of the Mueller report, which read:
…while this report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him.
Every show featured at least one direct reading of that line, while some uttered it at a considerably higher rate.
That's right -- D'Agostino is mad that CNN directly quoted from Barr's letter.
D'Agostino then cast doubt upon whether that claim was even true: "As far as the veracity of the claim that the President has not been exonerated? That’s only true of [sic] one believes Special Counsel Mueller is the only individual capable of doling out said exoneration. Mueller himself left the determination of whether to prosecute President Trump for obstruction of justice up to the Attorney General, who in turn determined that the President was not guilty of any such crime."
So, apparently, it's OK if the media reports a false claim as long as it makes Trump look good.