How evenly did the media divide the blame during the first few days of this national debate about civility? Media Research Center analysts reviewed all 55 broadcast network stories or segments discussing the discourse from just after the shooting January 8 through the evening of the national memorial service on January 12, reviewing the ABC, CBS and NBC morning, evening and Sunday talk shows. They discovered:
• 8-to-1 Against Conservatives – Of the 31 stories containing references to instances of supposedly intemperate speech, more than eight out of ten (82%) were about the conduct of conservatives or Republicans, compared with just 11% which talked about liberals or Democrats
• Sarah Palin was Most Frequently Impugned — mentioned in 24 stories, or more than three-fourths of those containing references to specific actors
• Tea Party – Another nine stories linked the Tea Party to the tragedy.

Media Research Center

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