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MRC names Swift Boat Vet John O'Neill 'Conservative of Year'

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DisHonors Awards Showcase Liberal Media Bias

MRC names Swift Boat Vet John O’Neill ‘Conservative of Year’

The Media Research Center’s 2005 DisHonors Awards, a roast of the most outrageously biased liberal reporters of the last year, drew a record crowd of 950 at an April 21 laugh-filled gala dinner at the J.W. Marriott Hotel in Washington. Cal Thomas, Sean Hannity, Ann Coulter, Neal Boortz, Zell Miller and T. Boone Pickens highlighted the presentations and acceptances of the awards. Following the presentation of DisHonors Awards in five categories, a look at the “Best of the Worst of Dan Rather” and audience selection of the “Quote of the Year,” the MRC presented a 12-minute video tribute to the Swift Boat Vets and POWs for Truth. MRC President L. Brent Bozell honored a founder of the group, John O’Neill, with the MRC’s Conservative of the Year Award. DisHonors Awards winners were selected by a panel of 16 leading conservative media representatives, including HUMAN EVENTS’ own Tom Winter. Thomas, a syndicated columnist and host of Fox News’ “After Hours with Cal Thomas,” served as master of ceremonies. Hannity, co-host of Fox News’ “Hannity & Colmes” and a radio talk-show host, joined HUMAN EVENTS Legal Affairs Correspondent Ann Coulter and Atlanta-based radio talk-show host Neal Boortz as presenters. In place of the journalist who won each award, a conservative accepted it in jest. Those standing in for the winners: Colin McNickle of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, the target of Teresa Heinz Kerry’s “shove it” remark; renowned businessman T. Boone Pickens; radio talk-show host Janet Parshall; Midge Decter, author and conservative intellectual; and former U.S. Sen. Zell Miller (D.-Ga.). The MRC paid tribute to Reed Irvine, the founder of Accuracy in Media who died November 16. Later, Thomas urged the audience to put ailing ABC News anchor Peter Jennings in their prayers. The five award winners and “Quote of the Year” are below. A full list of the runners-up can be found at www.MRC.org. Really Time to Retire Award “I have a feeling that it [bin Laden’s new videotape] could tilt the election a bit. In fact, I’m a little inclined to think that Karl Rove, the political manager at the White House, who is a very clever man, that he probably set up bin Laden to this thing.”

–Former “CBS Evening News”
anchor Walter Cronkite on CNN’s
“Larry King Live,”
Oct. 29, 2004.

Send Bush to Abu Ghraib Award Bill Moyers: “There have been 37,000 civilians killed in Iraq, or as many perhaps as 100,000. Why is abortion a higher moral issue with many American Christians than the invasion of Iraq and the loss of life there?” Sister Joan Chittister: “Could I ask you that question? Because that is the moral question that brings me closest to tears. I do not understand that, Bill. You see, I’m absolutely certain that some of the people that we’re killing over there are pregnant women. Now what do you do? Now what do you do? That’s military abortion.” Moyers: “Somebody said to me–that’s what?” Chittister: “That’s military abortion. Why is that morally acceptable?” Moyers: “Somebody said to me the other day that Americans don’t behead, but we do drop smart bombs that do it for us.”

–Exchange on PBS’s “Now,”
Nov. 12, 2004.

Al Franken Award for the Stupidest Analysis “Veterans haven’t been a big force in past campaigns … but the Vietnam vets may feel bound together more strongly. … It may be too early to know how influential they’ll be in Kerry’s campaign, but they have already done one thing: If the Republicans had any hope of casting Kerry as some Michael Dukakis-style effete Eastern liberal, that’s over. The band of brothers stands in its way.”

–CNN’s Bruce Morton on
“Inside Politics,”
Jan. 30, 2004.

The I’m-Not-a-Political-Genius-But-I-Play-One-on-TV Award Joe Scarborough: “Since George Bush got into public life, he’s been underestimated by his opponents. … Is that a part of an act that this guy does to lull Democrats into underestimating him, or do Democrats just put up really, really bad candidates against this guy every four years?” Comic and liberal radio host Janeane Garofalo: “Well, I don’t recognize that as a valid question. First of all, George W. Bush is a bad candidate. George W. Bush is unelectable, in my opinion. And secondly–” Scarborough: “Well, why does he keep winning?” Garofalo: “I don’t know, voter fraud? A failed mainstream media that fails to inform the electorate about what their government is doing? Ignorance? Apathy? I don’t know.”

–MSNBC’s “Scarborough Country,”
Jan. 20, 2005, the night of
Bush’s second inauguration.

John Kerry Suck-Up Award “It was four years ago during the Democratic convention, not far from where we stand tonight, that John Kerry stood near his father on his deathbed. Earlier, as the family was preparing to leave John Kerry’s home in Boston, I’m told he whispered to his sister, ‘Remember the words of our mother on her deathbed when she said, “‘John,'” knowing he would run for President some day, “‘remember, John, integrity, that’s what matters.'” Tonight, John Kerry tried to show that integrity.”

–CBS’s Byron Pitts during
live coverage of John Kerry’s
speech to the Democrat convention,
July 29, 2004.

Quote of the Year “’60 Minutes’ has now obtained a number of documents we are told were taken from Colonel Killian’s personal file. Among them, a never before seen memorandum from May 1972 where Colonel Killian writes that Lieutenant Bush called him to talk about how he ‘can get out of coming to drill from now through November.’ We consulted a handwriting analyst and document expert who believes the material is authentic.”

–Dan Rather on
“60 Minutes,”
Sept. 8, 2004.

“The ’60 Minutes’ report was based not solely on the recovered documents, but on a preponderance of the evidence, including documents that were provided by what we consider to be solid sources.”

–Dan Rather on
the “CBS Evening News,”
Sept. 10, 2004.
Written By

Mr. Baker is the Vice President of Research and Publications at the Media Research Center.

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