Mainstream Media Lies and Sloppy Reporting on Voter Integrity Measures Exposed

Journalists Press Racial Rhetoric Over Facts About Voter ID Laws, Says New Paper

Washington, D.C. – The mainstream media is flouting journalistic standards for fact checking, objectivity and integrity when they report on voter ID laws, concludes a just-published paper by National Center for Public Policy Research General Counsel Justin Danhof.

“The media are on a quest to deceive the American people into believing that voter integrity measures are racist, suppressive laws written by conservatives to diminish the black, poor and elderly vote,” said Danhof. “Nothing could be further from the truth. Voter ID laws treat every eligible voter equally and with dignity.”

Danhof’s paper, “Media Shows Pervasive Bias When Covering Voter ID,” evaluates media coverage of voter ID laws. Rather than objectively reporting the legal basis for voter ID laws, Danhof found, the media are engaging in race baiting and a misinformation campaign.

“The bias is staggering,” Danhof says. “The media needlessly injects race into discussions of race-neutral voter integrity laws almost 150 times more often than it discusses their legal underpinnings. Since 2011, 37 states have passed or considered some form of voter integrity measure. Many of these laws are based on Indiana’s voter ID law that the United States Supreme Court ruled was constitutional only four years ago in the case of Crawford v. Marion.”

“But it appears the media would rather claim new voter integrity measures are modern-day Jim Crow laws than explain that the Supreme Court found such a law to be constitutional,” Danhof added.

“I expected to find journalists arguing against the Crawford decision, but they don’t even do that much,” said Danhof. “Most voter ID articles don’t even bother to mention the decision. The media are either willfully misleading the public or grossly negligent when it comes to the voter ID debate.”

Danhof also discovered that the media often present “studies” and “reports” from liberal advocacy groups and pass them off as objective evidence that voter ID is evil.

“Whether it is News21 or the Brennan Center for Justice, the media use liberal advocacy studies to advance their progressive narratives. News21 is just a bunch of college kids whose recent ‘comprehensive’ report on voter ID – that was praised by the mainstream media – was debunked by National Center Executive Director David Almasi. And the Brennan Center is a George Soros-funded advocacy group whose work has been laid bare by election scholars,” said Danhof. “No objective journalist should ever rely on work by these groups.”

Danhof previously wrote about Pennsylvania’s voter ID law here and here. He has been interviewed about voter ID laws on dozens of radio shows nationwide, including, the Armstrong Williams Show, Talkback with Chuck Wilder, America Tonight with Kate Delany and the Tim Constantine Show.

The National Center for Public Policy Research is a conservative, free-market, non-profit think-tank established in 1982. It is supported by the voluntary gifts of over 100,000 individual recent supporters. In 2011 it received over 350,000 individual donations. Two percent of its revenue comes from corporate sources. Contributions to it are tax-deductible.


The National Center for Public Policy Research is a communications and research foundation supportive of a strong national defense and dedicated to providing free market solutions to today’s public policy problems. We believe that the principles of a free market, individual liberty and personal responsibility provide the greatest hope for meeting the challenges facing America in the 21st century.