Weekly news review: Saturday, April 15, 2023
What does the news landscape look like?
Trump continues to dominate the news rankings, holding the top spot for the fifth day in a row. Abortion was also a top topic all week.
This is how the top stories were covered on each side of the media yesterday:
Trump / Fox / 2024 (31% more on the left)
Abortion pill rulings (62% more on the left)
Pentagon leak (9% more on the left)
Media bias ratings are from AllSides.
This is how articles from liberal and conservative outlets were distributed over the past five days among the top stories.
Liberal outlets used these words more than conservative outlets:
Conservative outlets used these words more than liberal outlets:
What is happening in the top stories?
Now for a deep dive into our top three stories, starting with…
Trump / Fox / 2024
Key people: Donald Trump, Ron DeSantis, Donald Trump Jr., Mike Pence, Alvin Bragg
Donald Trump faces 34 felony charges related to paying hush money to a porn star, making him the first president to face criminal charges.
Trump said in an interview that he wouldn’t drop out of the 2024 race for any legal reason, even if he faces a possible conviction in the hush-money case.
Despite his legal problems, early polls show Trump as the favorite to win the 2024 Republican presidential nomination, with Ron DeSantis as a distant second.
A Morning Consult poll found Trump widening his lead over DeSantis in a hypothetical Republican primary matchup to 33 points, with Trump and DeSantis performing similarly in a hypothetical matchup against President Biden.
A political action committee supporting DeSantis launched an ad criticizing Trump as a “gun-grabber” over comments he has made supporting gun control legislation.
Mike Pence ramped up his criticism of fellow Republicans at a GOP donor summit, trying to paint his would-be rivals as straying from party principles as he inches closer to an expected presidential run.
Trump and DeSantis are both viewed overwhelmingly favorably among Republicans, with 78 percent of potential GOP primary voters viewing Trump positively and 69 percent viewing DeSantis positively.
Pollsters found that almost half of respondents who said they supported Trump would support DeSantis as their second choice, while 41 percent of those who prefer DeSantis said they would support Trump as their second option.
Trump’s campaign was reportedly trying to poach DeSantis’ donors, even though DeSantis has not announced that he is seeking the GOP nomination.
Abortion pill rulings
Key people: Kamala Harris, Merrick Garland, Xavier Becerra, August Pfluger, Cindy Hyde Smith
The Supreme Court temporarily blocked lower court orders that imposed restrictions on mifepristone, keeping the status quo for the most common form of medication abortion while a legal challenge to the FDA’s authority plays out.
Justice Samuel Alito ordered that the lower court rulings are stayed until next Wednesday, April 19.
The action by the conservative justice freezes the litigation and maintains the current availability of mifepristone pending a further order from himself or the entire court.
The U.S. Justice Department and Danco Laboratories, the pill’s manufacturer, filed emergency requests earlier on Friday asking the justices to freeze an April 7 preliminary injunction by Texas-based U.S. District Judge Matthew Kacsmaryk that would greatly restrict mifepristone’s distribution while litigation contesting its federal regulatory approval proceeds.
Alito’s temporary stay was a procedural move that does not indicate how the case will eventually be decided by the full Supreme Court.
Key people: Jack Teixeira, Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Ukrainian Foreign Affairs Minister Dmytro Kuleba, National Security Council spokesperson John Kirby
Highly classified military documents on the Ukraine war were leaked, exposing private assessments by allies on an array of intelligence matters.
The leaked documents present a “very serious risk to national security,” according to a top Pentagon spokesman.
The documents range from briefing slides mapping out Ukrainian military positions to assessments of international support for Ukraine and other sensitive topics.
The leaked documents also include information about South Korea’s internal discussions regarding the sale of artillery shells to Washington.
Jack Teixeira, the suspected leaker, was arrested and charged with violating the Espionage Act and another statute that prohibits the unauthorized removal of classified documents.
President Biden directed the military and intelligence community to take steps to further secure and limit distribution of sensitive information.
South Korean officials said a “significant number” of leaked documents from the Pentagon were likely altered, casting doubt on records that indicated the U.S. was spying on Seoul.
U.S. documents included in the leak of sensitive material online show that the war in Ukraine has decimated Russia’s elite special forces.
Secretary of State Antony Blinken reassured his Ukrainian counterpart that the United States maintains “ironclad” support behind the Eastern European country in a call following the bruising leaks of U.S. intelligence on the war.
Thanks for reading Partisan Playground’s Newsletter! Subscribe for free to receive new posts and support my work.