Just 32% of NBC's "Journalists" are Functionally Literate


I am Journalism (And so can you!)

Tea Party candidates ran in tough congressional races all across the country. Scores won. Others, like Sean Bielat, had the courage to run in districts that were apparently unwinnable. Good on those candidates. Win or lose, we appreciate their heroic efforts.

But what does it really say about the Tea Party movement that candidates like John Dennis, Van Tran, Stephen Broden, Bill Marcy, and Anna Little were unable to pull off the upset victories for which we were hoping? Was it weak tea?

For all the talk of the Tea Party's strength - and there will certainly be a significant number of their candidates in Congress - just 32% of all Tea Party candidates who ran for Congress won and 61.4% lost this election.
In settled Congressional races, NBC identified 122 Tea Party candidates, 40 of whom won on election day. There are some big problems with this analysis. First is the question of how these candidates were chosen to carry the "Tea Party" label:
Identifying Tea Party candidates is undoubtedly inexact. Our criteria, generally, was to include anyone who has either been backed by a Tea Party group or has identified themselves as a member of the Tea Party movement.
Undoubtedly inexact? No kidding! Especially when you're not even trying.

Even a cursory examination of NBC's Tea Party list raises concerns. When compiling their list of Tea Party winners, NBC excluded many Tea Party Republicans, e.g., Kristi Noem, Scott Tipton, John Runyan, Dennis Ross, Mo Brooks, David Schweikert, Nan Hayworth, Alan Nunnelee, Steve Pearce, Scott Rigell, Lou Barletta, Daniel Webster, James Lankford, Chris Gibson, Chip Cravaak, Cory Gardner, Jeff Denham, Bill Huizenga, and Tim Huelskamp ... just to name a handful.

Why were these candidates excluded from the Tea Party winners list? Was it because they would have made the Tea Party look too good? In lieu of an explanation from the brainiacs at NBC, we can only speculate.

An examination of NBC's analysis of losers raises questions as well. If constituents mindlessly insist upon returning corrupt and idiotic incumbents like Eddie Bernice Johnson, Steve Cohen, Loretta Sanchez, Russ Carnahan and Hank Johnson to Congress in perpetuity, is that an unflattering reflection of the strength of their Tea Party opponents, or is it a indictment of the voters who live in those districts?

Just askin'.

In scrutinizing NBC's method for identifying Tea Party candidates, bear in mind that as a matter of formal policy, many tea party groups don't endorse candidates, period. Also remember that there are strong defenders of the Tea Party agenda whose political careers predate the birth of the Tea Party (e.g. Jim DeMint, Mike Pence and Steve King). Do those members of Congress count as Tea Party winners? NBC left them out. Inexplicably, Michele Bachmann was included in NBC's list of Tea Party victors, but the rest of the congressional Tea Party Caucus was left out.

So there are big problems with the numerator and the denominator in NBC's Tea Party equation. Unfortunately, not very surprising...

A special "shout out" to Alexandra Moe for writing this Tea Party hit piece. Are you stupid, or are you a liberal activist? Either way, you're no literate journalist.

Update: Surprise! The New York Times uses the same fuzzy math.

Discussion at Memeorandum


  1. MSNBC's deplorable hatred of the Tea Party and conservatives means that they are unable to report "news". They (along with CNN) are able to spread vitriol but that's about it.

  2. For me it's a simple mater of "consider the source"... I might as well just call up obama and ask "will everything be okay soon?"...
    Folks, we have to do our own homework. that includes sorting out the RINOS!

  3. @John: RINOs are going down. The incumbents will be incredibly hard to take down, but we can do it. Orin Hatch should be a the top of the list.

  4. We conservative Americans need to Double Down on the RINOS, the free spending, free wheeling Demos, and most of all on the Corrupt Main Stream News Media.

    I believe of the three mentioned above the MSNM is indeed the most dangerous b/c of the power they have to review, rewrite, and use the news as their own vehicle for propaganda.

    This election is only the beginning and hopefully will be a trumpet call for all Americans to demand and work for a clean and genuinely transparent US government.

  5. "If constituents mindlessly insist upon returning corrupt and idiotic incumbents like ... Russ Carnahan... to Congress in perpetuity, is that an unflattering reflection of the strength of their Tea Party opponents, or is it a indictment of the voters who live in those districts?
    Just askin'."

    Oh, well played my friend, well played. That is quotable material right there!

  6. I agree with KOOK, totally quotable! Also, RK, this tactic via. the lame stream press (blaming the tea party for losses in some races), just may be the best thing for the movement. The more they ignore, the more momentum we get.

  7. @Kook, LCR

    Thanks, guys.

    It's good to see that most libs are still in denial. I don't expect to see them snap out of it anytime soon. As you pointed out, this works to our advantage.

    It's disappointing to see that NBC is increasingly in the tank for the radical left. Their "news" is starting to resemble that of Think Progress.

    There's no way the left would let the right get away with this kind of junk analysis. They'd justifiably be bombarding us with ridicule if we tried to sell this kind of garbage. We owe them nothing less.


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