Topic: Media Research Center
Brent Bozell tries to draw attention to himself in a Sept. 26 Media Research Center press release, in which he claims he "issued a letter to the heads of NBC, CBS, and ABC television networks calling on them to end their bias against GOP Presidential hopefuls in their reporting and interviewing."
The MRC curiously did not make a copy of this letter public, including only one paragraph of in the release, in which he touts an MRC "research" piece claiming that "by a 5-to-1 margin, ABC, CBS and NBC morning show hosts employed an adversarial liberal agenda when questioning this year’s Republican candidates":
"This is thorough, well documented research. Among other data, the research shows that by a 5-to-1 margin, ABC, CBS and NBC morning show hosts have employed an adversarial liberal agenda when questioning this year’s Republican candidates. It is completely different from the treatment these same shows accorded Democratic primary challengers in 2007. . . Viewers are tuning out in droves because they are sick and tired of such undeniable bias."
Actually, like most MRC work, this is most definitely not "thorough, well documented research." First, as the MRC usually does, its scope is limited to the broadcast networks and excludes cable news networks in order to avoid having to pass judgment on Fox News. Second, there's no documentation at all -- no comprehensive list of questions grouped by categorization, and no explanation of the methodology used to determine if they were "liberal" or "conservative," a subjective dermination if there ever was one. Actual researchers would do that; Rich Noyes and Geoffrey Dickens, the MRC researchers who wrote this analysis, have no interest whatsoever in showing their work.
Bozell invokes the "analysis" again in his Sept. 27 column, using it to mind-read the networks, claiming that "they hope to damage whoever the Republicans nominate." Actual research involves quantifiable data, not mind-reading.
That Bozell would use such a deficient study as a partisan political tool shows us yet again that the MRC isn't really about "research" at all.