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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 19, 2009
2:19 PM

CONTACT: Media Matters for America

Jess Levin (202) 772-8162
jlevin@mediamatters.org

Fox News Avoids a Tea Party?

Bowing to pressure from White House and progressive organizations, network airs no live coverage of protest

WASHINGTON - October 19 - Facing intense criticism from the White House and progressive organizations about its political activities, Fox News bowed to pressure and aired no live coverage of the October 17 tea parties. This weekend's events were intended to protest "journalistic malpractice" but Fox News' silence was the real story, standing in stark contrast to its relentless promotion and live coverage of previous tea party protests.

"A protest of journalistic malpractice clearly hit too close to home for Fox News," said Eric Burns, President of Media Matters for America. "Fox's silence during this weekend's protests is a clear sign that the criticism coming from the White House, journalists, and progressive organizations is having an impact."

BACKGROUND:

Following White House communications director Anita Dunn's recent critique of Fox News serving as an "arm" of the Republican Party, Fox News did not devote any live coverage to what it had previously referred to as the October 17 "tea part[y]" protests by Operation: Can You Hear Us Now?, an organization that planned "to show the MSM [mainstream media] that we as the American Public are absolutely fed up with their journalistic malpractice." By contrast, Fox News devoted significant promotion and live coverage of the April 15 tax day tea party and the September 12 "March on Washington."

As Media Matters has noted, Fox News has come under increasing fire not just from the White House, but also from journalists and progressive leaders:

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Media Matters for America is a Web-based, not-for-profit, 501(c)(3) progressive research and information center dedicated to comprehensively monitoring, analyzing, and correcting conservative misinformation in the U.S. media.



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