Last fall, the Culture and Media Institute released “Baptism by Fire,” a study of how ABC, NBC and CBS covered the religion of the Republican primary contenders versus that of Democrat candidates in the 2008 cycle. CMI found that Republicans’ faith was discussed seven times more than Democrats, and their faith was 13 times more likely to be criticized or challenged.
Not surprisingly, the networks gave Barack Obama a near-total pass on his religion. Questions about Barack Obama's pastor, Rev. Jeremiah Wright, surfaced in early in March 2007 and were covered on Fox News and in newspapers, but it took an entire year for any of the networks to mention Wright. Out of 11 mentions of Obama's religion, not one challenged, criticized or took his statements at anything other than face value.