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Was it the sneakers? Media adored Davis filibuster, rejects Cruz

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While complaints from the right about media bias are standard fare in politics, sometimes the partiality is so blatant that it must be called for what it is.

Case in point, the media’s reaction to Republican Sen. Ted Cruz‘s 21 hour stand on the floor of the U.S. Senate in opposition to funding Obamacare and how that stacks up to the treatment Democrat state Sen. Wendy Davis received when she filibustered for nearly 13 hours in the Texas Legislature.

Davis made a futile attempt to delay legislation that would make it more difficult to kill viable babies and was heralded for fighting against all odds, while Cruz is ridiculed for the same reason. Have we forgotten the tweet by The Associated Press that included a promotional #StandWithWendy hashtag?

In contrast, ABC’s George Stephanopoulos spoke of a “bizarre, blockbuster speech” by Cruz, and NBC’s Natalie Morales called it a “long-winded protest,” Newsbusters reported.

Newsbusters adds how CBS News’ Charlie Rose “played up how supposedly, ‘some people are saying this is about personal ambition and being seen fighting for this, because it serves his [Cruz’s] own presidential ambitions.'”

So what did Rose think of the Davis filibuster? In an interview on June 27, he gushed: “It [the filibuster] has also catapulted you in the political limelight. Will you run for governor or for national office now?”

Ari Fleischer, former White House press secretary for President George W. Bush, seemed to anticipate what was coming:

As documented by Right Scoop, the headlines alone tell the tale:

Washington Post:

“Wendy Davis is a formidable foe of abortion restrictions”

“Ted Cruz’s futile and counterproductive battle against Obamacare”

Bryon York, chief political correspondent for the Washington Examiner and Fox News contributor, made a headline comparison of his own via Twitter:

Even Politico’s Dylan Byers had to point out the obvious:

When a Democrat like Texas state Sen. Wendy Davis filibusters against abortion restrictions, she is elevated to hero status, her tennis shoes become totems. When Sen. Cruz grandstands against Obamacare, he is a laughingstock in the eyes of many journalists on Twitter, an “embarrassment” in the eyes of The New York Times editorial board…

And to be sure there was blatant media bias, liberals are tripping over themselves to justify it, as Mediaite’s Tommy Christopher offers:

If you read Byers’ [Politico] entire piece, you won’t find a single instance in which he suggests that anything about the coverage of these two disparate events was inaccurate, or even unfair, beyond the fact that they weren’t treated the same. But they weren’t the same. The merits matter.

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Tom Tillison


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