On Tuesday's O'Reilly Factor on Fox News, political pundit Bill O'Reilly claimed "the American media overwhelmingly favoring Barack Obama over Mitt Romney" would lead to slanted news coverage that "will give the President about 3% or 4% of the popular vote" in the general election.
According to MRC, O'Reilly referred to studies that demonstrated the media "favors the more liberal candidate, and has for decades."
A recent sampling of news stories from US national print outlets, TV broadcast and radio transcripts covering the 2012 election does not support O'Reilly's claims, however. In news stories and broadcast transcripts analyzed over the last three months, Republicans are quoted at a 44% higher rate than Democrats a new study found. Additionally, the ratio of positive to negative coverage was 17.1% more critical of Obama than Romney according to media watchdog group The 4th Estate.
But O'Reilly sees clear bias from the left, arguing on his program that the electoral impact of the media being in the tank for the Democratic Party "gives the Democrats a major advantage because their agenda, whether it's bashing Mitt Romney or promoting the President, will be covered far more extensively than the Republican agenda."
"Second, stories that make the President look bad will be played down in the national press. While anything Mitt Romney does will be described as a gaffe, a mistake or just plain dumb.
" O'Reilly referenced a discussion with media critic Bernie Goldberg, who told Fox News viewers: "Look, obviously journalists are Barack Obama's most loyal base. They will not abandon him and they've got too much invested in him."
Goldberg claimed that 86% of US network news coverage of Romney's recent gaffe-filled overseas trip focused on his missteps and the angry reactions of stunned politicians rather than on the substance of the trip itself.