Less than eight hours after the movie theater shooting spree left 13 dead, “Good Morning America” host George Stephanopoulos turned to reporter Brian Ross who, he said, had “found something that might be significant.”
Ross’ finding? There’s a guy named Jim Holmes who joined the Colorado Tea Party last year.
Stop the presses!
Never mind that a simple online search of the Denver area turns up more than a dozen Jim Holmeses, any one of whom was just as likely to be the shooter as the guy Ross found on the Tea Party site. And never mind that Ross had zip, zero, nada information on the Jim Holmes whose name he did find.
Why bother taking such elemental journalistic steps when you can possibly be the first to tag a right-wing group with a mass shooting?
There’s also the question of why Ross’ first instinct was to go trolling around Tea Party sites. That, as much as Stephanopoulos and Ross’ decision to go on the air with the bogus information, reveals the enormity of the media bias at work here.
This is the same bias that was on glaring display after the Gabby Giffords shooting, when reporters tried — falsely and based on no evidence whatsoever — to pin the shooting on heated Tea Party rhetoric.