Washington Secrets

Big 3 networks ignore MSNBC host's call to defecate on Sarah Palin

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The Big Three networks that flooded viewers with stories about Rush Limbaugh's labeling of abortion advocate Sandra Fluke as a “slut” have gone radio silent on MSNBC host Martin Bashir's call to defecate on Sarah Palin, according to a new analysis.

The score tallied by the Media Research Center: Limbaugh, 32 stories or interview segments demanding an apology. Bashir, zero stories.

“When it comes to civility, NBC and the rest of the broadcast networks are world-class hypocrites. They added fuel to the Democrats' ‘war on women’ mantra by howling with indignation over Rush Limbaugh's offensive remark last year, but are utterly silent over this vile, disgusting attack on a conservative woman, Sarah Palin,” MRC Research Director Rich Noyes told Secrets.

The offensive comments from Bashir came Nov. 15 when he suggested that Palin receive the same type of humiliation as slaves, including defecation in her mouth. He apologized three days later.

Limbaugh also apologized, but his comments about Fluke, who testified for funding of abortion, were made part of the Democratic claim that the GOP was conducting a “war on women.” No such similar claim has been suggested by Democrats or ABC, CBS and NBC about Bashir’s comments.

“Back in 2012, the same journalists who are now suspiciously silent about Bashir’s gross and hateful attack on the once-vice presidential candidate were apoplectic about Limbaugh,” said the MRC report provided to Secrets. For example, on March 5, 2012, ABC World News anchor Diane Sawyer pronounced: 'It was turbulent today as conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh tried to steer through the whirlwind he unleashed after calling a law school student speaking out about contraception, quote, a ‘slut’ and a ‘prostitute.’ One radio station canceled his show. More big sponsors withdrew. And, as Limbaugh apologized again, the Republican presidential candidates still tried to dodge having to make tough comments about the power broker.' "

MRC added: “While Bashir did offer an on-air apology to Palin, no actual punishment has been announced. In the past, MSNBC suspended Ed Schultz for a week for metaphorically calling Laura Ingraham a ‘talk slut’ on his own radio show, not on MSNBC’s airwaves. The network suspended David Shuster until he quit for suggesting Hillary Clinton metaphorically ‘pimped out’ her daughter Chelsea on the campaign trail. Years ago, mere political donations took Joe Scarborough and Keith Olbermann off the air. And most recently, actor Alec Baldwin received a two-week suspension for using anti-gay language, not on his MSNBC show, but in a personal dispute with a paparazzo.”

Paul Bedard, The Washington Examiner's "Washington Secrets" columnist, can be contacted at pbedard@washingtonexaminer.com.
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