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Thursday, September 14, 2006
CNS Labeling Bias Alert, Plus a Double Standard

A Sept. 14 article by Susan Jones on a conservative group's call for more "constitutionalist" judges uncritically uses the term "terrorist surveillance program," the Bush administration's preferred terminology for its warratless eavesdropping.

Jones also glibly dismisses criticism of one controversial Bush judicial nominee. Jones noted that nominee Michael Wallace was "declared 'not qualified' by the American Bar Association," then added in parentheses: "bunch of liberals, conservatives note." Jones fails to note, let alone contradict, the ABA's reasons for giving Wallace that unanimous "not qualified" rating -- doubts about his commitment to equal justice; misgivings about his impartiality and open-mindedness; and the potential that Wallace may use his position and legal skills to "change or modify the law to reflect his person views rather than rely upon and apply existing precedent."

Curiously, in the very next paragraph, Jones touts the fact that the ABA gave a "qualified" rating to another judicial nominee, Terrence Boyle, as a counterweight to conflict-of-interest charges surrounding him. Why doesn't Jones dismiss Boyle's ABA rating as offered up by a "bunch of liberals" as she did for Wallace's? She doesn't say.

Posted by Terry K. at 3:31 PM EDT

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