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Sunday, May 1, 2022
MRC Defends Republicans Accused of Racist Questioning of Jackson
Topic: Media Research Center

With the actual confirmation hearing over for Supreme Court nominee Ketanji Brown Jackson, it was time for the Media Research Center to try and get a handle on the post-hearing narrative, starting with blanket denials that Republicans' aggressive and deceitful questioning of Jackson. First up, whining that said questioning was considered to have at least a tinge of racism:

Then it was Tim Graham whine time. First, he insisted that what Jackson faced was nowhere near as bad as what happened to Brett Kavanaugh:

Was this epic shamelessness or remarkable amnesia? (Pick A.)

Washington Post deputy editorial page editor Ruth Marcus penned a piece in the Sunday paper headlined "Confirmation hearings? More like defamation hearings." Online, the headline was "Forget advise and consent. This is smear and degrade." It's like nothing ever happened to Brett Kavanaugh.


In this case, the words "Brett Kavanaugh" never appeared, as if Marcus didn't have to address the Fake News about teenaged gang rape. In 2018, Marcus took after Kavanaugh for daring to get angry when he was accused of teenage rape. The headline then was "Ford’s testimony was devastating. Kavanaugh’s was volcanic." No "smear and degrade" or tarnish.

Oh no, "the fundamental wisdom of the Constitution’s approach was on display Thursday. Supreme Court nominee Brett M. Kavanaugh was confronted with the witness against him — one of them, anyway — and it was devastating." What a Democrat rag this paper is!

Graham offered no evidence that the sexual assault claims made against Kavanaugh were "fake news."

Then, Graham dedicated his March 30 column to issuing his usual complaint about fact-checkers fact-checking Republicans too much:

Now that the Ketanji Brown Jackson hearings are complete, we have collected another fascinating exhibit of the leftist tilt of “independent fact checkers.” Just try and find a single fact check on anything Judge Jackson said. Try and find a single evaluation of any statement by a Democratic politician touting Jackson – from Biden and Dick Durbin on down.

Checking liberals and Democrats is apparently not listed among their job duties.

On March 28, White House deputy press secretary Andrew Bates addressed Judge Jackson’s qualifications. Bates claimed what speaks to the strength of her public record “is the multitude of fact-checks from the press, from retired judges, and from former prosecutors who have dismantled attacks brought by a small group of GOP senators.”

“Dismantling” Republican critiques is the job of the Fact Check community? That’s what it looks like.

Graham went on to disingenuously rant:

Add to that one bizarre attack on a Trump fan on Facebook with 2,700 friends. He was ruled “False” when he claimed the Kavanaugh hearings drew more live coverage than the Jackson hearings. That is “True,” and PolitiFact is “False.” Once they started throwing around shoddy rape claims, The Price Is Right  and The View had to take a hike.

Graham conveniently didn't link to the PolitiFact fact-check in question so we could see it for ourselves. And it turns out that Graham is misleading about the fact-check; it actually said: "The coverage is comparable to how news networks reported on the initial days of Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearing. After  four days of hearings, sexual assault allegations against Kavanaugh emerged and another hearing was scheduled on Sept. 27 to address them. News networks canceled their regular programming to air that hearing live."

To repeat: The assault allegations against Kavanaugh weren't made until after the same round of hearings, and those were covered comparably to Jackson's hearing. The allegations were covered in an additional hearing, and that's the one that got widespread coverage. Graham's declaration of "false" is, well, false.

The MRC's parade of whining that Republicans are being criticized continued:

In that last one, Clay Waters made a lame attempt to throw shade at Democrats by suggesting Republicans treated better than Democrats treated Amy Comeyt Barrett: "At least Republicans stayed to vote against Jackson. The Democrats on the Judiciary Committee simply boycotted the vote for Trump nominee Judge Amy Coney Barrett in 2020." Waters conveniently omitted the context -- which was actually noted in the NPR article he linked to as backup -- that Democrats boycotted the vote to highlight how Barrett's nomination was being hypocritically rammed through by Republicans during a presidential election despite Republicans blocking Merrick Garland's nomination in 2016 by claiming that it was too close to a presidential eleciton.

Posted by Terry K. at 11:14 PM EDT
Updated: Sunday, May 1, 2022 11:15 PM EDT

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