We've shown how CNSNews.com's coverage of Ketanji Brown Jackson's Supreme Court nomination started out balanced then began to revert to its anti-liberal right-wing bias. Nowhere was this more pronounced than its coverage of Jackson's confirmation hearing, which was largely devoted to echoing anti-Jackson narratives as expressed by Republican senators -- particularly hammering on the discredited attack on her sentencing of those convicted of child porn offenses and the gotcha question of what a woman is.Here are the articles devoted to Republican senators asking Jackson questions and otherwise pontificating:
- Cruz Challenges Left-Wing SCOTUS Nominee: 'Will You Protect Freedom or Restrict It?'
- Hawley Lists Seven Times Ketanji Brown Jackson Issued Soft Sentences in Child-Porn Cases
- Sen. Graham Wonders Why 'Extreme' Leftists 'Spent the Money They Spent' to Have Biden Pick Jackson
- Cruz to SCOTUS Nominee: In 100% of the Child Porn-Possession Cases, You Sentenced 'Far Below' What the Prosecutors Requested
- Sen. Graham: Jackson Over-Ruled DHS’ ‘Unreviewable Discretion’ in Expedited Removal of Illegal Aliens
- Graham to SCOTUS Nominee: It’s Better to Put Child Porn Criminals in Jail, ‘Not Supervise Their Computer Usage’
- Hawley Gets Judge Jackson to Answer Question Durbin Wouldn’t Allow Cruz to Ask About Lenient Child Porn Sentencing
By contrast, CNS devoted no articles whatsoever to questions to Jackson from Democratic senators. The only time a Democratic senator's name appeared in the headline of a hearing-related article was a piece by managing editor Michael W. Chapman, "Durbin Interrupts Cruz to Stop Questioning SCOTUS Nominee Over Child Porn Cases" -- though it was clear by the transcript of the exchange in the article that Durbin was trying to get Cruz to stop talking over Jackson so she could actually answer the question he was badgering her with.
CNS also devoted a few articles to cherry-picked answers from Jackson largely framed to portray her as an evil liberal or focus on other right-wing obsessions:
- Ketanji Brown Jackson--Who Did Legal Work for Abortion Advocate--Thanks God at Confirmation Hearing
- SCOTUS Nominee: 'I Believe I Did' Celebrate Clarence Thomas' Nomination to the High Court
- Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson Avoids Saying That Punishment Deters Crime
- Judge Jackson: 'No, I Can't' Provide a Definition for the Word ‘Woman’
- Judge Jackson: ‘Roe and Casey Are the Settled Law…Concerning the Right to Terminate a Woman's Pregnancy’
CNS then sent intern Emily Robertson out to do her intern thing of pestering senators about the manufactured child-porn issue, asking them: "“Sen. Hawley yesterday listed seven child-porn cases in which he thought Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson had given sentences that were too lenient. Do you agree?” She wrote four articles compiling their reponses:
- GOP Senators: SCOTUS Nominee’s Leniency in Sentencing Child Porn Cases is a Serious Concern
- Democrat [sic] Senators Okay With SCOTUS Nominee’s Lenient Sentencing in Child-Porn Possession Cases
- GOP Senators ‘Very Concerned’ With SCOTUS Nominee’s Leniency in Child-Porn Sentencing
- Democrat [sic] Senators: SCOTUS Nominee is in ‘Mainstream’ in Sentencing Child Porn Criminals
At no point did Robertson tell her readers that the child-porn talking point has been discredied, with even conservative National Review legal expert Andrew McCarthy denouncing it as "meritless to the point of demagoguery."
Roberetson was made to do the same with the other right-wing narrative, hurling this biased question at senators: “Senator Blackburn asked Judge Jackson to define the word ‘woman’ and Judge Jackson said, ‘No, I can’t.’ Should someone who does not know what a woman is serve on the Supreme Court?” These senators responded:
- Kevin Cramer (R)
- Sheldon Whitehouse (D)
- Cynthia Lummis (R)
- Ted Cruz and Josh Hawley (R)
- Four other Republican senators
By focusing almost exclusively on Republican senators, it's clear that Robertson's mission wsa to advance right-wing talking points, not engage in journalism. Driving the point of her intent home even further, she even did an article on how Republican Newt Gingrich -- who hasn't been a senator for more than two decades -- huffed that Jackson "should be disqualified" from consideration on the Supreme Court "unless she can come back in and explain what a woman is and she can explain whether words like 'he' and 'she' are acceptable pronouns."