Cross posted at the MRC's NewsBusters blog.
Over the past several days, the networks have delivered the latest example of the dominant liberal media suddenly taking notice of a normal government activity done by the Donald Trump administration and treating it as outrageous when the same activity was also done by the Barack Obama administration without media scrutiny.
On Tuesday afternoon, MSNBC anchors began giving air to an online report by correspondents Julia Ainsley and Frank Thorp V that hyped complaints from congressional Democrats that, in July, the Trump administration informed Congress that it would divert funding within the Homeland Security Department, including FEMA, to ICE to pay to house the large number of illegal immigrant detainees, and to build facilities near the border to try asylum cases more quickly.
Anchors on MSNBC used words like "shocking" to describe the news coming as a hurricane is about to hit the U.S., and several times incorrectly claimed that the money would be used for border wall construction. MTP Daily host Chuck Todd even hinted that it might be investigated by Democrats as part of an impeachment inquiry.
After CNN began informing its viewers of the story, also Tuesday afternoon, its anchors similarly treated the news as questionable activity by the Trump administration as it was barely mentioned by either of the liberal news networks that the Obama administration had similarly transferred funding from FEMA to ICE when there was unusually high demand for resources.
By contrast, it did not take long after arriving at the story for Fox News Channel late Tuesday night and early Wednesday morning to inform viewers that similar activity had occurred during the Obama administration without any apparent complaints from Democrats. A couple of former Obama administration officials also dismissed the story as nothing to be concerned about, noting that the $155 million acquired from FEMA would only amount to about one percent of the $27 billion that the agency would have to deal with hurricane disaster relief.
Former ICE acting director and Fox News contributor Tom Homan recalled that the Obama administration had similarly transferred funding to FEMA nearly ever year he was in office, although he did not clarify if FEMA was the source of funding in all cases.
Other reporters noted that, in 2014, the Obama administration did use FEMA money for dealing with illegal immigrants.
Several shows on the broadcast networks ABC, CBS, and NBC also gave similar attention hyping the issue like MSNBC and CNN.