Many members of the mainstream media have made sure to paint nationwide protests as “peaceful” in recent months-- and “CBS Evening News” anchor Norah O’Donnell demonstrated how far they're willing to go on Wednesday night.
Axios reported earlier in the day that damage caused by "riots and civil disorders” from May 26 through June 8 would cost insurance companies between $1-2 billion.
“The vandalism and looting following the death of George Floyd at the hands of the Minneapolis police will cost the insurance industry more than any other violent demonstrations in recent history,” Axios reported.
When O’Donnell reported the overwhelming figure, she made sure to insist the protests were mostly peaceful.
“The protests in late spring were mostly peaceful, but damage from looting and arson will cost $1 to $2 billion in claims. That’s according to the Insurance Information Institute. And that would eclipse the previous high, the 1992 riots that followed the acquittal of four officers in the beating of Rodney King,” O’Donnell told viewers.
Media Research Center analyst Nicholas Fondacaro pointed out that NBC’s “Nightly News” and ABC’s “World News Tonight” didn’t bother to report the alarming statistic. While O’Donnell at least informed viewers of the damage, Fondacaro doesn’t understand why she needed to add the disclaimer.
“Earth to the liberal media, ‘peaceful’ protests don’t leave behind death, destruction, and shattered lives in their wake,” Fondacaro wrote.
Insurance Information Institute (or Triple-I) compiles information from a company called Property Claim Services (PCS), which has tracked insurance claims related to civil disorder since 1950, and other databases. It provided reports to Axios that the damage from unrest between May 26 and June 8 will be the most expensive in the nation’s history, surmounting the Rodney King riots of 1992 in Los Angeles.
The price tag could be as much as $2 billion and possibly more, according to Triple I. But the protests related to Floyd differ from others the database has tracked – never before have they been so widespread.
"It's not just happening in one city or state – it's all over the country," Loretta L. Worters of the Triple-I told Axios. "And this is still happening, so the losses could be significantly more."
The last time PCS compiled insurance losses for a “civil disorder event” was 2015, when riots erupted in Baltimore after Freddie Gray died from a neck injury in police custody. But those riots did not even accrue $25 million in damages.
Fox Business' Morgan Phillips contributed to this report.