On Saturday's Good Morning America, reporter Mike Von Fremd downplayed the
violence of protesters against Arizona's new immigration law. He spun, "Riot
police were called in to try and control demonstrators protesting outside the
capital. Most were peaceful. A handful threw bottles at police and were
arrested." Yet, ABC derided March's Tea Party rallies as "very ugly,"
despite the fact that there were no arrests.
In contrast, on March 20 , World News host David Muir scolded, "Protesters against the [health care] plan gathered on the streets of the capital where late today we learned words shouted turned very ugly, reports of racial and homophobic slurs, one protester actually spitting on a Congressman." Continuing to fret over those opposed the bill, he complained, "Late word from Washington tonight about just how ugly the crowds gathered outside the Longworth office building have become."
If Tea Party protesters had thrown bottles at members of Congress or police officers - or anyone else, for that matter - it seems
unlikely that ABC would have described them as "mostly peaceful."
Over on NBC's Today show on Saturday, Telemundo's Jose Diaz Balart reported from the scene: "Tensions were high outside the Capitol. Four protesters were arrested." On CBS's Early Show, co-host Chris Wragge made only a quick reference to the protests: "On Friday, there were protests against the bill outside the state capitol in Phoenix."