FAIR AND BALANCED
Balance, in this article about the John Roberts fight in The Liberal New York Times, means quoting three people who accuse the Democrats of anti-Catholic bigotry plus two people who praise the religious right's decision to make such charges -- while quoting only two people who defend the Democrats.
Oh, plus there's this:
Conservatives say the debate over Judge Roberts is an extension of a campaign begun two years ago, when conservative groups ran advertisements headlined "Catholics Need Not Apply," attacking Democrats for posing questions about the "fervent personal beliefs" of a Catholic nominee for a federal appeals court, William H. Pryor Jr., even though they did not explicitly mention his faith.
Because, I guess, a five-to-two imbalance of quoted speakers isn't deferential enough to the red-state readers the Times craves -- it's also necessary to throw in an accusation of bigotry the evidence for which is invisible to everyone but the right-wing complainants.
And while we're on the subject, let me state the obvious: The people who are whining about "religious litmus tests" in the case of Roberts are the same people who didn't want you to vote for Kerry because he's a pro-choice Catholic. I guess some religious litmus tests are more bigoted than others.