FLASHBACK: Media Blamed GOP ‘Hard Right’ After Boehner’s Exit, Too

FLASHBACK: Media Blamed GOP ‘Hard Right’ After Boehner’s Exit, Too

Since Tuesday’s ouster of House Speak­er Kevin McCarthy, TV view­ers have heard waves of jour­nal­ists slam House Repub­li­cans as rad­i­cals and extrem­ists who lack the capac­i­ty for gov­er­nance. A look through the News­Busters archives shows that’s exact­ly what view­ers heard after Repub­li­can Speak­er John Boehn­er stepped down eight years ago.
This week, as News­Busters’ Kevin Tober doc­u­ment­ed, the media blamed McCarthy’s fall on “a hand­ful of hard-right mem­bers of his own par­ty” (ABC’s David Muir) or a “far-right fac­tion” (CBS’s Norah O’Donnell). And over on PBS’s (tax­pay­er-sub­si­dized) New­sHour, anchor Geoff Ben­nett point­ed the fin­ger at “a hand­ful of hard-right Repub­li­cans.”
Such slo­gans — “hard-right,” “hard­line,” “far-right,” “ultra-con­ser­v­a­tive,” etc. — are meant to sep­a­rate con­ser­v­a­tives from what the media would con­sid­er the respectable main­stream of U.S. pol­i­tics. As edi­tors Tim Gra­ham and Cur­tis Houck explained on the News­Busters pod­cast on Wednes­day, you don’t hear jour­nal­ists talk that way about even the wack­i­est Democ­ra­ti …