Establishment media outlets have a history of labeling Republican presidents’ Supreme Court nominees as “conservative” but much less often use the term “liberal” for nominees under Democratic administrations, according to a study from the MRC (Media Research Center), a watchdog for establishment media.
The MRC examined “ABC, CBS and NBC morning and evening news shows during 24 hours after each Supreme Court nomination,” according to its website.
Justices selected by Republican presidents — John Roberts, Samuel Alito and Neil Gorsuch — were deemed conservative at least ten times after their nominations.
But Obama administration nominees — Sonia Sotomayor, Elena Kagan and Merrick Garland — were labeled by broadcast media only a few times as liberal, with Kagan given the title only once.
The MRC points to several television hosts who detailed the educational background and childhood of Left-leaning nominees but stopped short of calling them liberal.
“This woman has a life story that you couldn’t make up! I mean, you know, she’s born in the public projects, in the shadow of Yankee Stadium, a single parent household, she goes to a Catholic school, she gets scholarships to the best schools in the country, Princeton and Yale, she overcomes all that while dealing with diabetes all her life, and she is Hispanic,” CBS’s Bob Schieffer said while covering Obama’s selection of Sotomayor in May 2009, the MRC reports.
But when George W. Bush and Donald Trump presented their nominees, the MRC says establishment media wasted no time deeming them “deeply conservative” and “very, very conservative.”
For example, Justice Alito was labeled a “staunch conservative” by reporters during his appointment in 2005.
President Trump will announce his second Supreme Court pick on Monday night. (RELATED: These Are Trump’s Two Top Picks For The Supreme Court)