It’s a given that the names lawmakers choose for their own bills tend to be glowingly positive. But CNN apparently decided to editorialize a bit when it came to Ted Cruz’s Consumer Freedom amendment to the GOP health reform bill. Here’s the tweet which is based on a line from the story itself:
— CNN (@CNN) July 13, 2017
If you follow the link, CNN describes it as the “so-called Consumer Freedom amendment” twice, once in the highlights that appear at the top left of the story and once in the body of the story itself:
Cruz’s so-called Consumer Freedom amendment is considered contentious among Republican senators with some moderates having raised concerns that it could hurt those with pre-existing conditions. The amendment would allow insurers that offer Obamacare plans on the exchanges to also sell policies that are exempt from certain of the law’s mandates. That could allow carriers to provide less comprehensive plans with lower premiums, which would likely attract younger and healthier Americans.
A couple hours after the story went up, Cruz responded on Twitter:
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) July 13, 2017
CNN got burned on a bogus story just a few weeks ago. That followed an earlier mess when CNN predicted what former FBI Director Comey would say in his congressional testimony (they got it wrong). At this point, you would think the network would be making every effort to be on its best behavior, i.e. to not suggest to readers and viewers that it taking sides. So why take issue with the title of the bill in this way? Why not simply go with the name Cruz gave it and then explain what it would do. It’s almost as if CNN doesn’t trust its own audience to know they are not promoting the bill so they have to distance themselves to prevent blowback. They may even be right about that.