Though former President Donald Trump told more than 30 thousand lies over the course of his term in office and the GOP largely embraced these lies, especially in regards to the COVID-19 pandemic and the legitimacy of the 2020 election, a growing number of conservatives have come to mock the age-old journalistic practice of fact-checking.
They also claim that allegedly liberal-leaning journalists are less susceptible to fact-checks than conservatives.
Author and founder of the right-wing Media Research Center, Tim Graham, is one such conservative. On Monday, he shared a January 7 video of CNN's Anderson Cooper discussing Republican Senator Ted Cruz of Texas. In the days prior, Cruz referred to the deadly failed insurrection against the United States Capitol as a "violent terrorist attack." Because condemning an attempted siege of the Capitol is apparently a gaffe for Republicans now, Cruz saw immediate backlash from conservatives for his characterization of the attack, including from far-right Fox News host Tucker Carlson.
Cruz later went on Carlson's show to apologize for his "sloppy" and "dumb" wording, but was forced to cower further when Carlson expressed skepticism.
This prompted Anderson Cooper to mock Cruz by saying he had the "spine of a cantaloupe"—clearly an idiom calling Cruz out for being spineless.
Though Cooper's message was clear to the vast majority of people, Graham is livid that fact-checkers didn't feel the need to point out that Cruz's spine—which helps connect his central nervous system from his brain to the rest of his body—is not, in fact, composed of melon.
Graham railed against Cooper's "claim" in a recent tweet.
The mockery was almost immediate.
Some said Cooper's claim was misleading for implying Cruz had a spine in the first place.
Conservatives don't seem insulted that Graham thinks they're unable to realize Cruz's spine isn't made of cantaloupe.