Fact checking the fact checkers

Larry O'Connor:
... This week, the media fact-checkers jumped the shark.

Within the first minute of Mr. Trump’s address, The Washington Post posted a political argument under the “Fact-Check” heading. Given that the post is time-stamped 9:02 p.m., the Post had to have been pre-written and published to time with the speech that had yet-to-be delivered.

“There is no new crisis at the border,” the “Live Fact Check” claimed. Politico issued a similar “not a crisis” “fact-check.”

Those are not fact-checks. The idea that an elected official is lying by calling a situation he is trying to resolve a “crisis” goes well beyond fact-checking and enters the realm of making a partisan political argument. Like other regurgitations of Democrat talking points, this is certainly a legitimate form of opinion journalism, but is not even remotely a dispassionate research project to verify facts.

Furthermore, the Post fact-check contradicted an article posted in their own publication just three days earlier, in which the Post’s own journalists described the border situation as a “humanitarian crisis.”

CBS News reportedly deleted a fact check that “corrected” Mr. Trump’s assertion that 1 in 3 women are sexually assaulted during the hazardous trek from Central America to the U.S. border. CBS claimed “Between 60 percent and 80 percent of female migrants traveling through Mexico are raped along the way, Amnesty International estimates.” Their fact check actually helped the president’s argument by correcting him for under-reporting the hazards of crossing the border illegally. The fact check was deleted with no explanation.

The number of false or misleading fact checks goes on and on and I suggest you read the great work of clear-headed journalist Mollie Hemingway who has cataloged a plethora of such examples.
These things happen because the media sees "fact checks" as an excuse to write an argument for the liberal agenda.  Many are just writing briefs in defense of Democrat arguments.


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